Music Education: 5 Tips for Growing Your Children’s Musical Talent
Music Education—The benefits of learning to play a musical instrument or sing have been researched and discussed for years. Beyond gaining a skill that can entertain and add auditory beauty to the world, we also gain better neural "adaptability" which enables easier acquisition of other skills. Parents would say that learning to play the piano teaches their children patience and focus, and that performing builds confidence. And so we enroll our kids in band and choir at school, enroll them in piano lessons and suffer through their "practice" sessions. We rely on music educators to guide our children in the acquisition of myriad musical abilities.
5 Tips for Incorporating Music Learning Into Home Life
- Play "Family Idol." Staci Salazar, aka popular MomItForward tweeter @7onashoestring, says when they do this, they have one kid perform at a time, the others act as a judge, and the only rule is that only positive feedback can be offered. She should know how "Idol" works; she recently took a friend to "American Idol" to try out. This was their experience:
- Make a big deal of their home performances by having tickets, making popcorn, putting up "red carpet" and other simple props bought at the party store, etc. @cafesmom recommends this.
- Expose your kids to Zydeco music. It is easy enough for us to expose our children to many different types of music, and encourage them to gain their own taste (within the boundaries you set), but Zydeco is a type of uniquely American folk music that can broaden their horizons even more. It's suggested by @cedarhillmom.
- Check out Pandora free internet kids' radio, recommended by @m_mduncan, to discover new bands. Also, consider using sites like Grooveshark.com (recommended by @thetattoedtype) and Playlist.com for free access to specific songs and customizable playlists.
- Encourage them to put together a performance. If you are comfortable with it, and your kids possess enough skill and are old enough, consider letting them put together an actual performance, taping it, and putting it up on YouTube or your own blog.
What are your children's natural talents? What ideas do you have for helping them develop their natural abilities? How can you introduce them to new opportunities that will best bring out their talents?