For very young children, taking music lessons might seem like a big feat; how are you supposed to learn how to play the piano when you are just starting to learn how to do things like speak, stack blocks, etc? But considering the long list of benefits that come with an early exposure to music, many parents want their kids involved as soon as possible - and we can’t blame you! Private instruction is not very efficient at this age, but because exposure to music has such a positive impact on development and future engagement in learning music, we prepared special classes designed for this age group which provide a fun and enjoyable first experience with music, while also helping you reap the benefits that go beyond just music-specific ideas!
We’ve been having so much fun getting to work with all of the little ones that have come through our doors for these classes, so we wanted to spend a moment sharing with you some of the fun ways they are learning and developing! Check out a list below of some of the main activities we do in our early childhood music classes so that you can try to implement some of these things yourselves every day at home!
Studies have shown that singing songs to your little ones encourages bonding, helps to smooth difficult transitions, and better enables your little one to pay attention and follow instructions! The benefits of singing do not end there. Singing is one of the 5 practices of early literacy, along with talking, writing, reading and playing. Singing helps your little one to understand the sounds and meaning of words, improves vocabulary, and helps them to begin to understand syntax or sentence structure. Not to mention that singing is just FUN! For all these reasons and more, we sing all throughout our early childhood classes at Northside. Familiar nursery rhymes, transition songs, echo songs, fingerplay songs, and more are a part of our classes! We also do vocal exploration as well as introduce Solfege, which gives your child the building blocks of matching pitch and eventually of learning to read and create music too!
Music lights up multiple areas of the brain and helps the body and mind work together. When a child connects what they hear to the movement and rhythm they feel, it increases their motor skills and coordination. Movement and dance are a big part of our classes at Northside! We tap our laps to keep a steady beat and learn to identify body parts through songs that involve movement and dance. We march, jump, dance, spin, and tip toe all around the room! During class, we learn simple choreography together in a big circle and dance and sing along to upbeat recorded music! We also include finger-play songs such “Open shut them” and “1, 2, 3, 4, 5 Once I caught a fish alive” to work on fine motor skills and counting!
Music creates a beautiful outlet for self-expression! In our music classes, we create space for individual choice and creativity! Many emotions can be expressed safely through singing and instrument play. In our classes, a child can twirl around with a brightly colored scarf to express joy, shake the parachute to express silliness and excitement, or even bang on a drum or stomp her feet to express anger or frustration. Children get to explore and choose instruments, share favorite songs, and use their imaginations as they “fly” like an airplane around the room!
Our classes are wonderful for growing in self-confidence! Exploring music and creativity gives children a sense of independence and leads to increased self-esteem. In our class, your child is given the opportunity to stand up in front of their peers to echo sounds, rhythm and solfege into Mr. Microphone! I have seen students who hide behind their grown-ups eventually stand up confidently in front of the class and sing all by themselves!
Musical experiences bring people together. There is something unexplainable about the way music affects each one of us. It cheers us up, motivates us, and touches our hearts in a way that is hard to put into words. When people experience and participate in music together, it bonds us in a special way and creates a sense of community. It is so important for a child’s development to interact and socialize with other children. Beyond that, it is essential to have meaningful connections with one another, for both children and adults alike.
We hope that some things on this list inspire you to start your children with music at a young age and see how you can integrate it more easily into your child’s day to day experience at home! We’ve attached a video example of just a few of the fun music games you can learn in action below. If you’re interested in joining one of our classes as well, feel free to visit the link below where you can find more information!