Music is vital to a child’s education. Every year of my elementary years we had music and it was my favorite class. I loved not only hearing those sounds but being able to make them myself. Music became an important part of my life. Even as I’m typing this I have my writing music playing in the background.
Why you need music in your homeschool planning
I recently read an article by a music teacher, Adam Kuzik, claiming, “music is part of human nature.” It is the reason we sing along with a song on the radio. Music ties people together. It brings complete strangers together. Have you ever been somewhere and just started singing along with a song, only to find others joining you? I have and not only was it bonding, but a BLAST!
“Music is the language of emotion,” according to Adam Kuzik. Think about it. Depending on what you are listening to, it can completely change your mood. On Sunday mornings, we listen to Christian music, this not only our families’ favorite music, but it prepares our minds for what we are going to be doing that day. When I’m cleaning my house, I want music to boogie to.
Also, if you don’t lead your children to the music you want them to listen too, then their choices may not always be what you want them to be.
How early do I need to start?
We started Jackson’s music training from the moment I found out I was pregnant with him. The rest were listening to music along with him. We started off singing him our favorite songs, but mostly we picked HIS SONG. This is the song I would sing to him while I was pregnant and wanting to sleep, but he was very active. It became his sleeping song. Even though he is 18 he says the song makes him happy and you can see the smile in his eyes while he sings along with me.
Ok, so maybe you didn’t start that early and feel like you are behind. I promise you aren’t. There is no time like the present. My youngest 2 love watching Little Einsteins. You can find Season 1 on Netflix. This will not only introduce them to classical music, but to art, instruments, conduct, singing and dancing.
You see music not only teaches preschoolers about language such as phonetic awareness, vocabulary, listening skills, and self-expression but also skills such as coordinations, balance, and physical fitness.
Crosswalk has a great article to give you some ideas on how to implement music into your home for your preschooler, HERE.
My child wants major in math and science, how will this help them?
Oh, Mama, let me tell you nothing is going to help them more than music.
“Mathematics, especially, are aided by music education because it targets a very specific set of brain activity: the development of spatial-temporal reasoning. Highly developed spatial-temporal faculties are imperative for working through solutions to the complex problems in fields such as architecture, engineering, science and obviously, mathematics.” Tom Barnes of Mic.com
Do you want the scientific information to back this up? Check out this study that was completed at UCLA by James Catterall. The difference in the grades for a student who also study arts and those who don’t is HUGE!
I’m struggling with my day as it is, I don’t have time for music education.
This is where the fun begins. Have you been struggling to get your child to sit still long enough to do their work? Why not get up and dance the wiggles out?
Are you trying to teach your child the States and Capitals? Why not watch the Animaniacs sing it? Not only will you get a good laugh, but it could be exactly what they need to start remembering it.
Music teaches discipline. Just like everything else, music takes practice.
“Exposing kids to musical instruments is the key. They are naturally curious and excited about them- and the discipline that parents and kids learn by sticking with it is a lesson in itself.” Says Mira Stulberg-Halpert of 3D Learner Inc, who works with Children who have ADHD. Click HERE for the rest of the article.
What does God say about music?
We have hymns at church to helps us remember God’s love, grace, and mercy for us. Many of these hymns are nothing more than scripture put to music. We have an entire book of the bible that is words put to song- Psalms.
If God tells us to sing, then there must be a reason for it.
Let the word of Christ swell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.
If for no other reason, Mama, you need to add music to your curriculum. HERE is a great article on how music brings us closer to God.
What do I suggest for music?
VARIETY! Your children need to be exposed to ALL kinds of music. My children music tastes, like mine, is ecletic. If you saw all the music that is on my Amazon Prime Playlist, you would be surprised. It takes you all over the emotional gammit.
In our morning circle time, we spend a month learning a hymn, listen to music by a specific composer, and learn a folk song. I pick these at the beginning of the school year. Stephen loves picking the composers, and I love having his help considering he was in marching band in high school.
Ambelside Online has a great collect Folk Songs, a list Composers, and even Hymns your children need to learn. I use these as a spring board for where to start. I’ve learned so many folk songs I’ve never heard before. If you don’t know what the song sounds like, just look it up on Youtube. I’m pretty sure you will find it there.
Musical compromise with my teens
My teens not only listen to what we listen to as a family, but they also have their own playlists for working on school work. I have put some stipulations on them, and they have found out how to make it work.
Jackson, my oldest, loves fast paced music. His taste usually runs to music I would exercise or listen to while running. I know there are a lot of bands out there that have this kind of music, but the words are horrid. Enter in DeadMaus and DaftPunk. These are bands that play instrumental music, mostly. He uses Pandora to set up his music choices.
Audrey, my oldest girl, loves pop music. She is easily distracted by the words of the music, so we found a compromise with The Piano Guys and Vitamin String Quartet. They play popular music, but it is just the music. She is able to hum along with her favorite songs and not be distracted by the words.
How do you know if they veer off music you approve of?
This is an excellent question and to be honest it took me a while to figure it out myself. To be honest Mama, you will never be 100% sure, and you can’t control EVERYTHING your child does. BUT they do give clues.
For Jackson, his give is the change in his vocabulary. Jackson is VERY VERY well read. His vocabulary since he was little has been HUGE! When he starts listening to his favorite music with words, he will start using slang. I’m not talking about foul language, even though that is a BIG tell, but words that aren’t noramally part of our conversations. They aren’t great and honestly not the words of someone who is as well read as he is.
For Audrey, her attitude changes. My girl is usually patient, sweet, understanding, and a voice of calm in this crazy house. When she starts listening to music with angst it shows up not only in her body language but in how she treats us. She becomes defiant and refuses to submit especially when her emotions are funning high.
Where do I find it?
My 3 choices are Pandora, Youtube, and Amazon Prime Music.
Pandora has stations that you can modify to cut out music you don’t like. This is usually my go to for instrumental music and for my kids to listen to while doing school work.
Youtube is my go to for songs for our Morning Circle Time. Just look the up the song you are after in the search bar and you will have what you are looking for without listening to a bunch of other things.
Amazon Prime Music, my go to for everything else. I’ve created playlists for Sunday, for quiet reading time, for bed time, for family game night.
Music is constantly playing in our house. It brings us so much joy. You can not only see it in my older 4 children but in the littles as well. Even Stephen will find himself singing along.
So how are you going to add music to your curriculum this year?