Here are the facts...1. Everyone has ears and a larynx (that's where your vocal chords live). That means that there are currently 14.3 Billion ears and 7.15 Billion vocal chords knocking about on Earth. That's a great deal of sound equipment to be used by their owner! Some ears are big, others small, some voices high, others deep...some need some help to hold a pitch or identify the difference between two sounds, some are hard of hearing, but can still 'hear' rhythmic vibration with their bodies. But we ALL perceive music!
2. The history of music and man goes back to the very first days of our primordial history, when one mummy growled rhythmic groans to let her little baby bi-ped know that she was near. She then listened for a responding gurgle. Add some bone instruments, consonant sounds and vowel shapes, and we're talking melody...its practically Bohemian Rhapsody!
3. Music brings people together and helps those involved to share what it means to be human, maybe even producing some sort of catharsis with therapeutic results. FACT. There is a whole world of ethno-musical research being done to explore exactly why this is. Bruno Nettl (ethno-musicology's Dan Brown) suggests that musical activity aids our socialising in a 'coherent system'.* Our whole society is an arrangement of 'social groups' that are defined by their soundtrack...Think of 'the wheels on the bus' and you may remember the chat you had with another new mum at your last NCT meeting. Think of an organ and you're sitting in a church pew, remind yourself of your favourite band and remember sharing your many feelings with your BFF aged 17 in your bedroom. From football chants to yoga mantras, music underwrites our social activity , and whether you're just listening or activity participating in it, you can't help but be involved, because you can't close your ears like you can your eyes!
Music is written into your biology. Your heart has a rhythm, you have hands and feet to percuss with and a mouth with teeth, tongue and cheeks to affect the sound waves leaving your larynx into melodies. Music is written into your social and cultural history. Music, when applied correctly can and will do wonderful things in your brain. When you bring your children into this activity with you, their brains light up too, and they begin to learn what it means to be in a community and make sense of the world with all 5 senses. Back to Mr Nettl...'Children...are not only socialized into this 'coherent system', but their development of reading skills and other proficiencies is enhanced'.
Music makes sense to us, right from birth! Did you know that a baby of 12 weeks can remember short melodies? Insane!
So here's one more fact...Less than 17% of women in the UK are engaged in making Music with their children, with 13.1 million have never played/engaged in any music making at all.**
Music is undeniably important for your child, but it can really impact YOUR relationship with your child too. So why are so few ladies taking the chance? Fear, Cost?
This is why Musical Mummies exists. Music is a community tool that isn't limited to attending every single baby music class aimed at introducing your Little Owl's ears to new sounds through endless renditions of 'wind the bobbin up' with copious use of maracas and bubble machines! The goal of our groups is to give mums a chance to Relax, Escape and Support one another, using music as an emotional lubricant. We meditate, and bond with our Little Owls by learning lullabies from all over the world. We benefit our physical health by exploring warm ups that facilitate good and easy singing. We learn to sing together, grow in confidence and teach our own little ones to do the same!
One last fact...
Singing with and to your baby and toddler produces Oxytocin-the love hormone, in both your brains! Forget helping your child to find their feet in a 'coherent system' whilst giving yourself some well needed mental and physical R&R. Singing can build a stronger love relationship between parent and child.
Of course, we'd love to to join a Musical Mummies group. You can find out more about what we do HERE. But for now, be encouraged to be an active music participant as a person. Its good for you! If you're a parent, be doubly engaged, for you and your baby/toddler.
Music is 'people glue', and what better way to apply it than between your heart and your child's.
*Bruno Nettl quotes taken from 'What’s So Important About Music Education?' -J. Scott Goble
**Data taken from 'Making Music : Teaching, Learning and Playing in the UK' research report 2014. ABRSM