Monday, May 19, 2014

When you hear a parent talking about enrolling their three-year-old in a musical program, what do you think? There is some slight controversy over this issue. Some parents think children five and under can't learn much from music lessons and parents are wasting money by putting them in lessons too young. There is also a belief in some parents that those who register small children for music lessons are stage parents pushing their little ones too fast to become talented, get famous, and earn money at a young age.
Then there are the parents who sign their children up for musical programs because they know all the benefits that music can have on a child even at a very young age. These parents believe in the power of music to teach their children valuable lessons in communication, self-expression, and working with others as a group.
There are some parents who sign their children up for aggressive music and dance lessons for all the wrong reasons. Fortunately, there are many more parents who use musical programs as mental and physical enrichment. They use musical programs designed just for young children that focus more on fun and enrichment then performance. The goal is emotional and mental stimulation rather than developing little stars.
Which side of the argument do you fall on? Is your side a bit different now that you know there are musical programs designed for children which do not focus on competition and performance? This is an eye-opener for many parents who did not realize such musical enrichment programs existed for young children today.
What's Important in a Music Lesson for Babies?
Signing a small child up for music lessons is much different then signing a teenager up for guitar lessons or a ten year old up for piano. Young children don't benefit from learning a single instrument as much as they learn from exposure to a wide variety of musical instruments and sounds. Children are stimulated into deeper thinking and mental development when they are allowed to spend time with different instruments, make different sounds with their own voices, and listen to a wide variety of musical tones.
Exposure to a variety of different instruments along with stories and other entertainment is important to a musical program designed for small children.
A relaxed, easy-going environment where children can play with music and explore it at their own pace and within their personal comfort zones is also important. There should be no pressure to push further, do better, or hit the right notes. It is an environment of exploration and encouragement where children are free to learn and absorb information and musical sounds at their own pace.
Do Babies Need Musical Instruction?
Now where do you stand on the issue of signing small children under the age of 5 up for musical instruction? Most parents come around to seeing the benefits once they realize that there are programs out there designed to encourage and uplift children so they grow with increased self-esteem and a sense of self-awareness. These programs are not designed to make musical stars out of babies. They are designed to enrich the lives of babies. For most parents, that makes all the difference.
There are still others that believe at-home music exposure is all young children need. Others disagree since childhood musical programs have done great things for their own children.


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