Although there is no doubt that I have a prejudice towards lullabies and relaxing music, I have to admit that there are times when you don’t want your baby (or you) to go to sleep, and at those times soothing music may not be the best choice. Like when they wake up in the morning full of sunshine and energy.
What music is good for those waking times, music that entertains, enlivens, and will keep those brain cells connecting and growing? One of the best ways to discover great children’s music is to go to a music class with your baby or toddler.
There are so many worthwhile programs for babies and young children that I couldn’t begin to cover them all, but I’d like tell you about one that I know is excellent.
When my grandchildren were toddlers I took them to Kindermusik classes, this particular one led by a brilliant educator who has been helping children to love music for many years. Miss Yvette led the class through some simple songs and movements, all perfectly planned and timed. Afterwards I asked her to meet me for tea so I could learn more about how she feels that music affects very young children.
We talked about the fact that music has been found to be important for brain development, but she made the point that music for babies and toddlers actually creates the pathways in the brain that allow a child to understand mathematics in later years. They learn to measure intervals, the distance between notes, by singing them over and over.
So if, at a very young age, the basic elements of measurements have been learned through learning musical concepts, a child’s neural pathways have already been created and strengthened and the child is ready to learn anything. Watch out for that budding genius in your household!
Check out Kindermusik for classes in your area—babies as young as six months through pre-school years (and their parents!) can benefit from these wonderful musical activities. Music Together is another wonderful program for very young children, and is also available all over the country.
In the meantime, put on some lullabies and get a good night’s sleep, so you can enjoy all that morning sunshine and energy!