By: Kate Scally, Childcare 101 Guest Blogger
I am very excited to be a guest blogger for Trusting Connections! As the mother of a young child, I first ran across this group on Facebook and was impressed by the positive reviews and the posts/resources that this group offers. I am so happy that a childcare service like this exists for Tucson parents.
My post today focuses on the importance of music exposure and education in all stages of a child’s development, and some wonderful musical opportunities available for your children here in Tucson. Now, I’m sure you’ve heard something about how important music is for a young child’s development. As a local singer and music teacher, I see this first hand in the students that I work with every day, and I often get asked the question, “When should my child start music lessons?” I usually refer them to this wonderful article, which explains when more formalized lessons should begin:
PBS Article: What’s the Right Age to Begin Music Lessons?
When a child is between the ages of birth to age 3, music instruction should be fun and informal–for example, my daughter is almost two, and absolutely loves to dance (we have several special “dance” dresses already). One of our favorite things to do is put on a song and dance around the room. I incorporate some simple dance and directional movements, such as “reach up and wave your hands” and “stomp your feet,” but for the most part I allow her to move around on her own, praising her for her wonderfully creative movements. We also have many rhythm instruments she likes to use, such as shakers, drums, tambourines, etc. She recently got a plastic guitar from the dollar store, and she loves to strum it and sing along while wearing her sunglasses like a rockstar. Although these activities seem like play, they are in reality building important gross and fine motor skills, and the child is gaining valuable listening and ear training skills, as well as physical coordination.
I really enjoy bringing my daughter to Pima county libraries’ stay and plays and storytimes, which incorporate movement, songs, and dance. Click here to check out events near you.
As your child grows, more formal music instruction in school and through private lessons and camps is very important for brain development and emotional growth. Here are just a couple of articles that go into more detail:
Washington Post: “Music Lessons Spur Emotional and Behavioral Growth”
Time Magazine: “How Music Can Change Your Brain”
I am a performer and music director with the local “Arizona Rose Theatre Company,” a wonderful, family based community theatre company that offers a broad range of youth programming. After teaching music and singing to students of all abilities and working in many different environments over the years, I am proud to say that the Arizona Rose’s teaching environment is by far the most positive and nurturing that I have experienced. I have seen students grow in confidence and blossom in our classes and camps. This summer we are offering a youth musical theatre camp for ages 7-17 that will culminate in a performance of Disney’s “The Jungle Book.” Students will receive training in acting, singing, and dancing in a supportive, nurturing environment from highly qualified teaching artists. For more information, please check out our website.
The camp is July 11-29th, but the registration deadline of June 1st is fast approaching. We try very hard to keep all registration costs low, and we do have a couple of scholarships available through our local sponsors, so please let us know if you need financial assistance. There are also opportunities for you to sponsor a young artist through donations or buying an ad in our program. Registration is going fast, so please check out our website and sign up now! If you have any questions, please feel free to email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our childcare 101 series helps educate local families and nannies on a variety of childcare and child development topics. Want to be a guest blogger? Contact Rosalind at email@example.com