MUSIC MONDAY MAY 13, 2019
Welcome to the Blah blah blah blahg!  (kudos to Phyllis Fulton for that description!)

We’ve got a shorter post for you today – trying to be more streamlined.  Let us know what you think on Facebook @MusicTogetherOfCharlotte or Instagram @musictogetherclt. Use #MTCharlotteMondays and please share with friends. More music is a good thing!

 

WHAT’S HAPPENING
It’s strawberry picking season!  What a great way to fill your kitchen with the fresh smells of spring   Give your toddler an opportunity to practice small and large motor skills while connecting with our precious earth at any local farm.  Here are some suggestions:

VERY BERRY DAYS THIS WEEKEND!

STRAWBERRY SATURDAYS!

Also, don’t miss TEA TIME IN THE GARDEN on Sunday, May 19, 4:00 – 6:00 pm at Wing Haven Garden & Bird Sanctuary, 248 Ridgewood Ave., Charlotte.  https://winghavengardens.org  A real treat!

 

YOU PLAYIN’ YET??
We say it all the time…..informally playing musically with your child creates crucial neuropathways that allow him to sing in tune and keep a beat (not to mention all those amazing benefits we talked about last week).  So how do we do that?

  • Try improvising a counting song – how high can you go?
  • Make up new words about what you are doing to an old favorite song or nursery rhyme
  • Make weird sounds.  Babies and toddlers like nothing more than experimenting with their voices!  Start circling and dipping and swooning and swirling with your voices.  Think sirens and funny voices.  What does a llama say?  an aardvark? a sloth?
  • Find some drums in the kitchen!  Soup cans, pots and pans, spice bottles are all great rhythm instruments. 
  • Find a toy piano or guitar and bang and strum away!
  • Turn up the tunes – find the one you loved in college or high school – grab your child’s hand and dance, dance, dance!

The true power of musical play lies in YOUR participation.  If there is one thing we can learn from children, it’s how to play!  So, pay attention to her lead, and follow that unique creativity and experimentation with some good old-fashioned face-to-face interaction.

 

GIVE ME THE GOODS!
AREN’T BROKEN SLEEP CYCLES, DIFFICULTY BREASTFEEDING AND FEWER SHOWERS HARD ENOUGH?  DO I ALSO HAVE TO MAKE MUSIC WITH MY NEWBORN?

Well, the short answer is, we think you’ll find music helps us through those early months of a new baby’s life, and it can be tremendously beneficial to the child as well.

Your baby is a natural born music-maker!  Just listen to her coo, squeal, cry, giggle and eventually “babble.”  Just like babies babble in language, they also babble musically.  Have you ever heard your son “sing” on “da da da da da”? Or heard your daughter coo while a familiar song is playing?  That’s music-making, and only needs a bright smile and eye contact for her to continue.

If he has been lucky, he has been listening to you sing to him, play music for him, and feel you dance with him in utero.  Now that he’s in the world, just watch how your baby responds to music in his now independent body!  He’ll become very still, listening intently to the amazing sounds you are giving him;  or she will coo and may even “match pitch” (sing the dominant) towards the end of the song; or his eyes will brighten and move toward the sound of your voice; and, of course, her feet and hands will kick and wave and move about when music is around her!

So, what should you do?  Mimic his movements!  Coo back in the same pitch, tap a steady beat on her body, wave your arms about just like he does, and keep singing and dancing. It will reinforce that making these types of noises and movements is more than it seems – it’s music!