Let’s consider the importance of music in child development.
Experts have already proven that music stimulates child’s intellect development.
It is interesting, the scientists say that stimulating effect of music lasts for about five years! Music has also a therapeutic effect. Even the ancients knew about the high impact of music. In ancient Greece, Pythagoras in his university at Crotona began and ended a day with the singing: in the morning – to clear the mind from sleep and initiate activity; in the evening – to relax and be able to rest.
Music education: when to start?
Many parents who want to give their children a music education, ask the question: when to do it? Professionals asked this question long ago: before birth! The fetus in the womb can hear the repeating “outside” sounds starting from the 19 week old. Since that time, a woman can give a music education to her future child: she can put quietly playing headphones or player on her belly, and her baby can hear the sounds of quiet classical music. Mother also should pay attention to her music development, often listening to a good calm music.
Experts assure that children, who were being given music education even before their birth, start quickly sitting, standing, walking, talking. Besides, these children have gentle disposition and confidence in their own abilities.
List of classical music for the regulation of mental and emotional state of children:
- to reduce the anxiety and uncertainty feelings – Chopin, Strauss waltzes, Rubinstein,
- to calm down – Beethoven, Schubert, Brahms,
- to remove tension in the relationships – Bach,
- to raise the vitality and activity – Mozart, Liszt, Khachaturian,
- to cheer up – Tchaikovsky, Beethoven,
- to reduces the anger – Bach, Haydn,
- to focus – Tchaikovsky, Debussy and Mendelssohn.
When children sing or play music they better read, think and learn. The more we discover how the brain works, the more we recognize how crucial music is to children’s learning. Elizabeth Lloyd Mayer, Ph. D., a psychoanalyst at the University of California, Berkeley.
What happens in the first few months of life leaves a lasting impression. Babies are emotionally smart and all they need is for adults to recognize and understand this.
At three or four months old a baby does not only listen to music but his reception of music is emotional. When he hears to the sounds of a lullaby, he is lying calmly and quietly, but when he hears cheerful, joyful music, he is crying, singing, and sometimes dancing. It will be a great pleasure for your baby who he cannot sit yet, if you take his hands and start bending and unbending his arms to a rhythmical and lively music. Baby will bend his body, bend the knees and rock the cradle. All this not only develops his movements, but also improves his mood as well as creates an important emotional bonding: music is the source of joy and pleasure.
When a baby is about one year old he listens to music, to which adults move rhythmically with a flag or a tambourine, with a great interest. A doll can be used as well. A doll is marching to a march and dancing to a waltz. A toy bird is singing to music, and flies away when the song is over.
How to listen to music?
Here are some basic tips:
- Do not turn music on if your baby does not want for some reason (he wants something else or he feels bad).
- Music should not be too loud.
- Music, even the most beautiful, should not sound continuously. For the baby will not only stop perceiving it as a pleasure and excitement, but will stop perceiving it at all.
- Your baby should not listen to music longer than two or three minutes three or four times a day. Gradually increase the duration to 15-20 minutes by 9-12 months old. By the age of 1 year, and sometimes earlier, your baby will point to the source of music and ask you to put it on. By this age, his reaction (whether he likes music or not) will be more certain.
And of course, games will help you develop your little one’s hearing.
2-3 months old. Ring a bell or shake a rattle so that your baby could see them. Then move them away so that your baby could not see them. He will look for them with his eyes and will be glad to find sounding objects again.
5-6 months old. When your baby starts crawling, hide with a bell in your hand and call your baby. He will find you listening to the sound. Gradually you can hide further and further. Due to such games your baby determines connection between sounds and their source.
At this same age use a game for listening to music. Music sounds half a minute. Then you cover the sound source with a cloth and ask your baby: “Where is the music? No music?”. Baby will glad to play, and being happy that everything is clear to him, he will crawl to the sound source and removes the cloth. Then he will crawl back, wait for you to turn the music on and will listen to it with a new interest.
You are free to create more various games for your baby to get music education. And education will be funny and easy for both you and your baby.
How to sing lullaby songs:
- If you can, dim the light.
- You should hold your baby and sing to her.
Infants and parents are biologically ready to have close emotional ties. Rocking, cooing, gazing and gentle singing while holding the baby close, help develop the close ties within the first year of life.
Lullabies are important for:
1. close emotional ties for parents,
2. a calming atmosphere before going to sleep.
In the research of Laurel Trainor of McMaster University in Ontaria, Canada, it has been discovered that 4-month old babies clearly recognize the difference between the recording of their mother just singing a lullaby and the recording of their mother singing the lullaby to them. The scientist believes that the difference is in the loving tone.
Singing softly will calm your baby down.
You don’t have to be a good singer to sing lullabies to your child. The important thing is the tight bond it creates between you.
Strong emotional bonds with a parent affects the baby’s biological system, strengthening his immune system and guarding against the negative effects of stress.