Your child and music

Young children are irresistibly drawn to music. The experience of music offers important learning opportunities for young children.

The experience of music offers important learning opportunities for young children.

The experience of music offers important learning opportunities for young children.

Young children seem to be irresistibly drawn to music and usually enjoy music of all varieties. It is a form of communication, a means of creative expression and an emotional outlet. Look at your young child’s face and body when they are engaged in a musical activity: they convey eagerness and enthusiasm. However, more than that, the experience of music actually offers important learning opportunities.

Listening intently to music, children are sharpening their sense of hearing and experiencing rhythms and harmonies that are fundamentally mathematical. Careful listening helps fine-tune your young child’s aural skills so they become more adept at paying attention to sounds and auditory details.

According to North Dakota State University Extension, listening to music and dancing:

  • Connects the world of movement and sound with a child’s inner world of feelings and observation.
  • Helps children learn patterns, rhythm and differences in sounds.
  • Expands a child’s imagination.
  • Aids a child’s physical fitness, balance, coordination and movement abilities.

In addition, finger plays and other nursery rhymes help children develop:

  • Language skills (verbal and listening skills)
  • Small motor skills; hand-eye coordination
  • Memory, rhyming
  • Self-esteem

Michigan State University Extension encourages all parents to share a wide range of musical experiences with their young child, from silly songs and finger plays to classical symphonies and jazz. You don’t have to worry about being musically inclined: simply sing songs with your young child, listen to different kinds of music, do finger plays, have a parade, dance together and enjoy each other as you enjoy music.

For more information about fun musical activities for young children visit extension.org.

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