“In order to find your way down the rabbit hole to join your child in their magical world, you should make a conscious transition from the daily constraints of adulthood into their world and set some time aside to partake in their imaginary play. For children, imagination can mean that a set of pots and pans can be an entire orchestra and a bluebell forest a fairy kingdom. Your challenge is to reach out to your child and enter his or her world”.
‘We invite you to extend your boundaries’
Hartbeeps classes are highly interactive, it is therefore important that you relax into our environment over time so that you will be able to:
- Play together - the richest imaginative play takes place when an adult takes an active role and sings and plays alongside their child
- Observe – watch your child display many new skills and determine favourite songs and activities.
- Follow – join in at your child’s level, it is such good fun to let go.
- Be creative – re-discover the child within yourself. Set aside restrictive adult norms.
- Have fun – sing, dance and enjoy - a specially created time with your child.
Your session leader will encourage you:
Why it is so important to enjoy music with your child?
- To dance and move with your child in order to foster their natural tendency to move and dance
- Sing new and old songs with gusto and confidence
- Realise all the many skills that your child is acquiring during music sessions
- Nurture the community within the family
- Create a sense of community within your group and be able to share experiences.
Children love music. They love to hear it, and they love to make it. Making music is fun. It's also one of the easiest things a child can do. Adults tend to be much more critical than children when it comes to making music. You don't have to be a professional singer or dancer to perform for a child - children don't care if the tune is correct, the words exact, or the pitch perfect. They only care if it is fun. And, even though it is fun, children learn a great deal through music. It is an excellent way to help them increase their social, physical, and communication skills.
How will music help my child's social skills?
Children feel important when they make noise that pleases themselves or others. Music is a socially acceptable way to practice doing this. It is also a good way to show emotions. Whether a child is happy, sad, frustrated, or excited, music can help express the feeling. Banging very hard on a drum is a good way to say, "I'm really cross"! Or humming a familiar tune can be very comforting.
How will music help my child's physical skills?
Exercise is more fun when it's done to music. Music makes any movement a little more entertaining and may encourage your child to work a little harder or a little longer. Climbing stairs can be hard work for a child with physical delays, but it seems like fun when it is done to a song like "Jack and Jill Went up the Hill". Crawling across the floor as a horn blows or a drum rolls may give just the touch to push your child to make that extra effort. Balance and coordination may be challenged with a fast paced start/stop song and even dancing together can be therapy when it includes stretching and moving around the room.
How will music help my child's speech and language skills?
Singing a variety of songs introduces much more complex and varied language than a child would perhaps use in everyday life and will help benefit language development. The intros and fills used during sessions will become instantly recognisable to children supporting memory skills. In order for children to enjoy talking and speaking, they must know what things are called. Tell children the names for everything in sight. You can sing out the names; songs are the easiest way to describe almost any experience your child has; for example, a routine lullaby can help you explain bedtime, sing songs about waking up, or bath time, or dressing or picking up clothes, or getting coats on to go outside. There are many wonderful songs available on children's records and tapes, but you can make up good songs, too. Take a favorite nursery rhyme and change the words to suite the situation. Putting these everyday experiences to music is a wonderful way to build a good understanding of what words mean.
Quiet listening is good, too.
Noise - musical and otherwise - isn't always good; quiet time is important for all children. People quickly "tune out" constant sounds. New sounds can be heard when the TV, stereo, and other noises are silent. The bath water running, footsteps on the stairs, or the creak of a door can ring throughout the house when other noises aren't too loud. Outdoors, the rustle of leaves, birds singing and water running are all sounds of nature singing. Make sure you let your child experience all of these.
What about instruments?
Many people make their own instruments. They might tap a pencil on the table, or strum with their fingernails on a table. Babies and young children make their own instruments - they crumple paper and shake rattles just to hear the sounds. This may be noise to others, but its music to them. Instruments to bang, shake and rattle
- Drums (or pots and pans from your kitchen cupboards)
- Sandpaper blocks
- Seeds for shaking in an old plastic bottle
- Bells (bracelet, anklet, or hand-held)
Things to crumple and crinkle
- Paper: foil, tissue, used wrapping paper
- Fabric: satin, taffeta, corduroy, net
Other musical toys
- Door bell
- Clapping hands
- Stamping feet
- Clicking fingers
Choose a few interesting instruments that fit your child's talents and abilities. All children are musical, all children are talented, and all children need a caring adult to identify what they are good at from an early age. This simple task of parenting has a lasting positive effect on children's self-confidence and spirit. Be sure you make or use sturdy homemade instruments, durable enough to stand up to hard use. Maybe buy one instrument for each special occasion, lowering the initial cost and giving the child time to fully explore each instrument.
Regardless of whether you or your child sings, dances, or plays instruments, enjoy yourselves. Music is to have fun with! Music is an expression of pleasurable sound - there's no need for criticism. Find out what interests both you and your child. Sharing music can be an important part of your child's development.
Music and Child Development
Aside from having an overall happier child, who happily sings songs such as If You’re Happy and You Know It, the benefits of music can also positively affect a child’s development. Fine motor skills (small movements to grasp objects) and gross motor skills (larger movements made with body) movements can be improved through improvisational dancing and handling of the instruments; vocal and speech development can improve through singing; and listening skills and concentration improve with aural training.
Making music is fun… Making music with Hartbeeps is magic!