Updated: Dec 13, 2020
Many of us love music. And most have seen their child enjoy music from a very early age. Music is a fundamental form of human expression. People in all cultures make and enjoy music from the time they are babies.
No doubt you've seen a baby singing, moving, or dancing to music. Children love to bang on a keyboard or strum the strings on a guitar. There is something about making sound in an organized way to express ourselves that is fundamentally human.
Films such as Frozen help to engage children through singing and melodies, as infants can recognise melodies before understanding the meaning of the words. This allows children to express themselves through singing and dancing with their favourite characters.
So why would you want your child to learn more about music?
It's true most children will never become pop stars or have a career in music. But the clear benefits of learning about music can impact a great many other areas, all while giving children an appreciation of the art that provides enjoyment and understanding for a lifetime.
According to a five-year study by the Brain and Creativity Institute (BCI) at the University of Southern California in 2016: “music instruction appears to accelerate brain development in young children, particularly in the areas of the brain responsible for processing sound, language development, speech perception and reading skills”. This is why we have Adventure Box. A dedicated singing and music class for all our children, aiming to improve their development through singing and music.
The benefits of music for children
- Give your child a chance to hear music. It's very easy to turn on some tunes while preparing meals, driving your child, or putting him or her down for a nap. Kids like to hear their favourite songs over and over again. Familiarity is important. Help them learn the words to songs they like.
- Try to analyse what is going on in the song with lyric and instruments. You don't have to be a musician to do this. Simply note some repeated words or a guitar solo. This helps children better understand the elements that make up music. We make sure music is embedded in most of the activities the children take part in at Lucky Beans Childcare, helping them develop their language, how they process sound and also aiming to help develop children socially and emotionally as we prepare them for school.
- Encourage your child to sing. Far too many people unfortunately feel you have to be a professional or have uncommon talent to sing. But having a nice voice and singing in tune aren't necessary for enjoying this fun activity. Music can also lead to more expressive arts such as: dancing, acting, painting and creative writing. So not only does it have an educational benefit but also social benefit through practicing self-expression.
Sing a favourite song loud and often. Children learn they can make their own music. Rather than simply being consumers of music, they now create their own. It's important children realize they, too, can sing and make music.
The effects of music on child development
Music can also benefit other school subjects. Research has not been conclusive about this, but many experts feel music helps children excel at maths. This is probably because music has an abstract quality. It helps children understand concepts that can't always be found in physical objects. Just like maths, music requires abstract thinking and problem solving.
This different way of thinking can be a huge benefit to children throughout their life and means they will be able to understand concepts many other people can't
Music also requires a certain amount of method and technique. Children who study or appreciate music will be able to apply this approach to organization and problem solving to gain an advantage in just about any endeavour.
Above all, children just naturally love music. By encouraging your child to enjoy music, you are promoting one of their interests. This teaches children to have confidence, enjoy self-expression, and foster a greater love of music that can enrich for a lifetime helping them develop their social-emotional learning.