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Elements of a Musical Foundation for Children

by Rebecca Freeman
January/February 2012
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Article Link: http://www.childcareexchange.com/article/elements-of-a-musical-foundation-for-children/5020346/

Knowing a few key activities for incorporating music into a child’s routine can be both valuable and fun. Even someone not musically trained can provide a musical environment for children to explore and express themselves. Beats and rhythm, timing and tempo, dynamics and tonality, independent finger exercises, and musical patterns all can be taught while enjoying singing, instruments, and movement. Music is a creative process and children exposed to music at an early age will reap the benefits.

Beats

The easiest way to teach steady beats is to teach the heartbeat. It is a beat children have been listening to their entire lives.

• Bouncing or swaying an infant to a beat is the best way for them to feel it with their bodies.
• For older children, have them hold their hand to their chest to feel the heartbeat, then tap their chest with each beat.
• Once they feel the rhythm, you can lead a march around the room in the same time as the heartbeat.
• Once children have mastered the steady beat, you can have them run around the room to increase their heart rate and feel how their heartbeat is faster but still steady.

Exposure to many different ...

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