Welcome to Art's Articles for the Month of:
Never forget that sharing music with your child is important!

First, music is a great way to share with your child.  You hear that reading to a young child is important.  Not only does it allow you to convey the importance of reading and begin teaching the child the basis of telling stories (which builds into good reading and writing skills), it allows you to spend time with your child in an enjoyable setting.  But think of how much MORE effective it is if you SING with your child.  The same skills are emphasized as reading.  You tell a story, you impart the importance of the beginning, middle and end of a story, you can stop the song suddenly and ask, "What do you think will come next?" to build on predictive skills.  These are the same activities that a reading teacher would do.  But with singing you bring an emotional element into play.  The melody, the rhythm draws your child in.  And it's just plain fun.

Second, the rhythm is a great way to get a child active.  My daughter started DANCING to music.  Recently it has turned to GYMNASTICS to music.  As long as the music plays, she remains active.  She is getting exercise and drinking in the benefits of the music.  (Now if I could only get her to change the artist every so often . . . or even not repeat the same song 25 times in a row . . .)

Third, it is well-known that music has a positive effect on a child's math skills.  Frances Rauscher, PhD, a psychologist with the University of Wisconsin has found that there is a positive effect on children's spatial-temporal (puzzle-solving) and math skills when those as young as 3-years-old are given formal musical instruction.  But the effect does not appear when the child merely listens to music.  They have to actively study and play music.  Norman Weinberger, PhD, is a professor of neurobiology and behavior at the University of California, Irvine.  I read a statement he made not long ago.  He said,  "Music learning and practice benefit many mental and behavioral processes, including cognitive development, language learning, reading ability, creativity, motor skills, and social adjustment."

What you are doing with your child is important.  Remember that on the days that you have to coerce your child into that 10-minute practice on his violin, and don't give up!
October
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Thinking about a musical gift for the Holidays.  Now is a good time to start planning.  I am posting a couple of links here that may help you make a decision about what your student (or for that matter YOU) might like to have.  Take a look.  Get some ideas.  Discuss things with your student's teacher.