As I said in this post, N loves music and I wanted to have a musical focus for a time before introducing him to something new. I have to admit that maybe that was a bit ambitious, and that it probably would have worked better in the winter when we were stuck inside more. Now the weather’s brightened up, he permanently wants to be outside. Great for him and healthy wise, but not so good for blasting out music!
So this month I’m going to just do a round-up of where we are musically, and what we’ve been listening to.
This is where I’d decided to start as N had heard a song on the radio and said he liked it. After finding some Eagles tracks on my ipod and playing them in the car and at home, it appears that N might not tell the truth when I ask him if he likes a certain piece of music. Take it Easy was acceptable, while others seemed not upbeat enough even if I tapped out a rhythm for him. I talked him through the guitars which you could hear and asked him if he could hear the drums.
Not much interest in the easy listening charms of The Eagles when he’s used to rocking to AC/DC. So next time I might find some more upbeat music with a better beat that we can march and beat to more easily. Or try a genre to focus on for the month.
On the Radio
I always have the radio on at home. Usually Radio 2 during the week, with local radio on at weekends if we’re out and about. N does seem to prefer men singing to women, where he often tells me ‘don’t want that music on mummy’, so I have to find something else to play.
I love to sing along to tracks and he’s obviously starting to recognise a few songs that come on the radio frequently. I usually say ‘I love this song’, to which he’ll be quiet and listen (meaning it’s acceptable) or tell me to find more music. One track that seems to be on every Saturday that I love, and he’ll quite happily listen to as I tell him it’s our Saturday song is Pink’s Just Give me a Reason. I like to blast out and sing to it, and the other week, I heard him trying to sing something of it too which is great.
One app we like is Toddler Music which has pictures of instruments, and if they’re tapped, the instrument plays. N quite likes this one, as although it’s basic; it should be teaching him the different instruments and sounds, but he tends to rush past most of the instruments until he reaches the guitars…he does love his ELC guitar so I think he’s a bit obsessed.
N’s most recent favourite nursery rhyme is 1,2,3,4,5, once I caught a fish alive. He’s been singing it a lot recently, although I’m not sure he’s quite got all of the words included. He tells me they sing it at nursery, presumably to help him with his numbers, as he does the finger counting thing as he sings as well. Nursery rhymes and songs definitely help with memorising letters and numbers even if the child doesn’t fully understand what they’re singing. N can sing (a bit jumbled in bits) the ABC song, and the fish alive one, so he’s getting there in learning his numbers and letters. Hopefully he’ll then be able to transfer that to visual recognition as well if we use words, songs and pictures.
It’s not quite music, but encouraging a child to listen to everything around them is getting them used to tuning in and listening to different things. I think encouraging quiet listening will help them in future to focus in class, listen to teachers and instructions as well as listening to themselves and others if they progress to play musical instruments. This weekend we were at Salcey Forest and the birds were tweeting away. A few times I asked N to stand still and listen to what we could hear.
Next steps I’d hope to look out some bird books and sounds, so we could match them up…I’m very out of practice since my Watch group days in my childhood where I used to be able to recognise different birds from their song!
Finally, our favourite music of the week
We’re a bit hit and miss with showing N interesting clips on YouTube. Mostly because when we want to go online, it’s really slow with our connection. But the other morning I noticed a friend had shared the clip below and thought I’d show N to get his reaction. I was blown away – I’m always appreciative of any musical proficiency, but this was amazing, and instantly recognisable as tracks I used to listen to. Quite apt that 30 minutes after watching it, we then heard the original on the radio. (if the video’s not there – head for Show Hawk Duos. Amazing playing.
N loved it. He couldn’t get enough. Even though he knows nothing about the genre, just watching people play real instruments was really interesting to him.
I think I definitely have to look up the Cushion Concerts in Oxford to see if they’re running again this year, as I know he would love listening and watching musicians play.
What music have you been listening to with your children? What would you like to introduce them to, or how are you doing it?
If you have a post about music and your children, or want to write one, then please do link up below. I’ll be looking for lots of ideas to use with N to broaden his musical exploration, so would love to see what everyone else gets up to. If you could show the badge as well that will help share the word and point people back to the linky. Do tell people about the linky (it’ll be run monthly, from mid month) as the more people take part the more it will grow.