* It is all about ears. I protect my baby’s ears like nothing else. I make sure no water gets in, she wears hat when windy or cold, she has ear muffs on if there are loud sounds around, like during the concerts or during the worship at church. View ear muffs for baby on Amazon.
* I sing to her every time I can. I make up songs, I sing children’s rhymes, I sing my favorite songs. It teaches her that singing is nothing to be ashamed of, its normal and people enjoy doing it. View Favorite Nursery Rhymes from Mother Goose on Amazon.* I carefully select music when I turn on CD player for her to listen. According to a study by researchers at Queen’s University in Belfast, babies’ reactive listening develops very early during pregnancy, proving that hearing is a major way babies process information, even before birth. When I was pregnant I used every opportunity to put on instrumental good quality albums, most of the time it was peaceful, relaxing worship music. Now we still listen to those CDs, but I also try to introduce her to various styles, different tempos. When choosing a song I make sure the voice is very clear and has a perfect pitch. Let me try to explain why I do it.. The reason is in the way human vocal cords are designed. When a person listens to someone sing their vocal cords are following and coping the singer’s vocal cords. That’s why it is easier to sing together with someone who knows what they are doing because your vocal cords automatically try to match their voice. But I have to mention that I am not a big fan of using music as a background sound during her moments of concentration and her Montessori time. I think in this case it is a distraction. Here is my favorite CD I played to my baby when she was in my womb: A Time to Dream (An Instrumental) by Peter Robertson We do some music activities to teach her very basics. For example,
I start to introduce her to it when she was around 11 months old.
Materials: I have a box with a soft material and a egg shaker; CD player; CD with fast/slow melodies/songs.
When the slow melody is on I pick up a material and start to wave it. Then I let my one year old to have a turn. When a fast melody comes on, I pick up an egg shaker and start to shake it to the beat. Then she has a go. This way she learns to hear the difference in music tempo. Now I have noticed when I turn the music on – she reaches her hand to take “slow/fast melody” box.
View wonderful Vibrant Rainbow Play Silks and egg shakers on Amazon*I collect all sorts of music instruments. I do make sure though that they are real or as close to real instruments as possible. I think it is very important to make sure every sound is a high quality sound. I present these instruments to her one at a time. If its something she can not use on her own I show it to her but then put away. View a great selection of musical instruments for children here
*We shake and we shake and we shake and we stop game
Materials: rattle or egg shaker.
We each pick up a rattle and I sing: And we shake, and we shake, and we shake and we stop. Sometimes I help her to stop shaking, sometimes she stops at the right time on her own.
Learning to appreciate music is a working process. I will be adding ideas as we go along. I just love moments when my baby starts rocking into beat every time she hears it, no matter if it is a song, or when daddy decides to be funky and very loud with our girl’s toys, or even to repeated sound of me grating a carrot. I just hope to pass on passion for this incredible world of music that makes life so much richer.