Coloring while listening to music can become an amazing way for children to relax and focus.  Playing instrumental music in the background engages the brain in a way that cuts down the clutter of thoughts that can be so distracting… for children and adults.  This allows the creative brain to flow freely in the coloring process.  Younger children may like to have coloring pages, whereas older children may like a blank sheet of paper to more effectively express the music to which they are listening.

It is a fun and connecting activity to sit side by side with your child, talking about the colors and pointing out the color choices and design choices – even if it is large scribbles across the whole page.  “Those long lines make me think of the long notes in this music.”   The music notes and little people are so much fun on this page !  Listening to music while drawing or coloring can be an excellent way to help the creative and analytical sides of the brain practice working together.  My children and I often listen to classical music like Mozart, Tchaikovsky, or Debussy while involved in artistic processes.
You may be wondering why instrumental music is preferred.   Music with words tends to engage the language centers of the brain, and may invoke other visual images.  Instrumental music activates a different part of the brain that is more open to creative expression, and self-directed color and image explorations.

It is incredibly powerful to use a style of music that connects with the artist, whether you or your child.  Classical music like string quartets may soothe and inspire some, but it may be annoying to some one else.  Try out a variety of styles, such as jazz piano, or guitar folk music, or even sweeping thematic music from a movie.  Will your child be inspired by music from the Titanic or Star Wars?

For younger children, ask them to choose from a selection of three coloring choices, whichever you feel your child is ready for – crayons, markers, colored pencils are typical, but you might also consider colored chalk, or water colors – perhaps even some tempura paint.  The more choices the child makes in the creative process helps them feel more confident in their choices.

Children a bit older might like to learn to use oil pastels – they are similar to crayons, but have a texture that allows the color to be smeared – use the finger to drag the color around on the page.

And if they want to use a little of this and a little of that – how wonderful – a multi-media collage.

These coloring pages were created as Valentine’s activities for my Kindermusik families.  I am adding them here for them, and for anyone who loves combining music and art.  Print out one or more, turn on some instrumental recordings, and enjoy the relaxing act of coloring.

Whether or not you attend Kindermusik, you may want to substitute “MUSIC” for Kindermusik, and talk about what your families loves about music,  What is your child’s favorite song to sing?  What is your child most likely to do with fun music starts in the background?  What recording or song is most likely to get your child moving and dancing?   Add these comments to the page, and keep it as a keepsake of your child’s musical interests at this moment.

For those in my Kindermusik programs, it is always interesting to hear what the child has to say in response to the open ended statement on the coloring page… “I love Kindermusik because…”   or “Kindermusik moves me because…”   One of my favorite child quotes in response to this is “Miss Debbie is sooo silly.”   I’d love to hear what your child’s response is…  of course, parents can express it in words if their child is unable.  AND, parents can add their OWN reasons for loving this experience.    You will certainly make my day if you will add  it in the comments below, even if you don’t color the page.  Bring the completed coloring page in to help decorate our music room with love this month.  Or the child can have their coloring page stamped and take it back home to decorate their own home.  Although I would like a picture first.

Most families attending Kindermusik have or will get to choose one in class, but I certainly know how the need to print another can be helpful !  We do have children after all, they may have torn one up, or they may want to color more than one.

Families, including those who have taken and enjoyed Kindermusik in the past, can scan and post to our Music Connections Facebook Page, and continue to share the love !