By Jodie Lynn
My brother-in-law is a musician and believes in the power of introducing music to babies before they are ever born. He claims that his own could recognize his voice once they were born and thinks that music indeed makes babies and children smarter. Is this an old wives tale? Or, does it actually work?
ANSWER FROM READER:
I am an elementary school music teacher and did in fact sing to each one of my five children before they were born. Once they arrived, my voice seemed to quickly soothe them if they were even remotely upset. Music also helped them to go to sleep. Personally, I feel that the flow, tone and calmness in music helped to build a smarter baby through personal growth inspired by listening, singing and engaging them while growing up. All but two are in the music business today and even the one's who chose a different path enjoy listening to various types. - D. Wilson in New York, NY
Singing to your unborn child or infant certainly couldn't hurt. Just ask all of the parents who have sat up at 2:00 a.m. singing a song to a crying baby. What we do know is that music affects all of us in different ways, mostly which are positive. A soothing lullaby might just help to quieten a wailing infant, just as much as a screaming toddler or anyone who has had a bad moment or an unnerving mishap of any sort. Happy music with various beats inspires many of us to want to dance around a little, sing along or lightens our mood. Either way, as a parent, grandparent or other member of the family, we can enhance the love of music in babies, toddlers and everyone in our household by choosing to listen to music more frequently. Play soft music at bedtime. Some parents swear by this nightly calming ritual, especially when the same music is played. Babies grow to love to hear familiar voices. Singing a special song is one more way for them to connect to you and actually inspires stronger bonding. Monitor the body language of your baby as you play certain kinds of music. When a baby seems calmer and happier, he is actually choosing his own music. Our goal in filling our environment with beautiful music may help to inspire our babies and children to become the next Mozart or Einstein. Along the way of listening to favorite tunes, should baby cultivate an innate intelligence that sparks the next mastermind plan behind the complexity of improving brain surgery, it shall be an additional bonus. However, keep life in perspective and remember, happier babies are healthier emotionally and physically.
CAN YOU HELP?
I am a gifted and talented teacher. Recently, my superiors have been revising the teaching techniques presented to students in the program. Even though I don't actually agree with the changes, I am being forced to implement them. Now, I'm wondering if it's being thrown at me because they knew I would balk. How should I handle the situation and how do I explain to the parents what is taking place without sounding bitter?
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