Music - From Dad's Point of View
Music has always been an important part of my life. Not that I could carry a tune (even in a sack) or play an instrument. But I grew up surrounded by music and I am raising my children surrounded by music. I confess that I don't really know that much about the Mozart Effect, but I guess it couldn't hurt. Through the deliveries of our three children, we brought taped music to the hospital, perhaps more for our own comfort than as a theme song introduction for the newborn. I couldn't now tell you a single song on those delivery tapes, but I think they helped.
I can't imagine living in a family without music. As I grew-up, my parents were involved in community light opera companies and so I heard the scratched albums playing songs over and over as my father tried to learn the chorus. Almost subconsciously I now know every lyric of every Rogers and Hammerstein musical. And the music didn't stop there. We sang together. Mostly in the car on long car rides. I really don't remember what we sang, or if I even sang along. But there was always music and it wasn't just something that professionals did.
Exposure to a variety of music is the key. We take our children to hear jazz, rock, ballet, bluegrass, folk, International, classical and popular music. We have all kinds of instruments in our house ˆ African drums, homemade shekere‚s, a hammered dulcimer, an electric piano, a thumb piano, harmonicas, flutes, guitars, pots and pans. You don't need a lot of money to expose your children to music. Where we live, there is a slew of free concerts every weekend all summer long. The University has free recitals, and the coffeehouses have free music if you don't mind the coffee and the company. Nowadays, the super bookstores are bringing in lots of local music talent to entise people to come and spend money. High Schools and Junior High Schools have music programs all through the school year. Even Public Libraries occasionally will host a music act for children. Music festivals are another wonderful way to introduce younger children to live music. Most outdoors festivals will have a variety of activities for children, so the potential for antsy kids and frustrated parents is lessened.
I have to believe we are doing something right. My oldest son plays the oboe and the violin. Although he is 13, he hasn't yet really fallen into the hypnotic control of only liking what is deemed cool by the deemers of cool. He listens to lots of different kinds of music. He appreciates the music for what it is and really likes to try to identify the different parts, the different instruments whether it is a bluegrass tune or a piece by Mozart.
So why are my thoughts so deep into music today? Perhaps because my wife and I went to a concert the other night. But I have rambled on long enough for now. I will tell you all about that concert in my next installment.
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Music - From Dad's Point of View
Monday, 26 January 2009
Music - From Dad's Point of View Jim Zola