What do you feel as you hear, or sing “You are my Sunshine”? Like many others, you may have loving memories of your grandmother or mother singing this to you, or you may remember singing this while pregnant with your little one soon to be. Your family may have a different song that invokes those deep feelings of connection and love.
This February, let’s expand on that, and Share the Love with Music… with our family, with our friends, and with those in our community who could use a bit of extra love and connection during this month.
Here are several ideas for you to enjoy sharing with all, anyone, anywhere, so send them a link and see how far it goes. Some of these are quite local, but families elsewhere can determine if there is a local equivalent for them.
Creating your Family’s Playlist of Love
First, lets make sure we each have a Playlist of Family LOVE. You can even set it up so your family can easily ask Alexa to play this. What will you have on your playlist? The heading above is a link to my article with considerations for gathering recordings specific to your family, as well as 5 Kindermusik recordings you can download for Free. And come join our conversation as we share our recommendations for songs to be added in our FB group.
While listening to music, get interactive… and creative. Enjoy finger plays, lap bounces keeping the steady beat, expressively dancing with the music. Add some scarves to play peek-a-boo, then move expressively with the music, upbeat or flowing. Engage in a Family Jam by adding some sound makers, whether they are real instruments, or “found sounds” around the home, or instruments you create together.
Create and Instrument with a Pencil
How many of you now have a Valentine’s Day Pencil? No… don’t sharpen and write with it, get your creative juices flowing and create an instrument with it. The pencil can be used to tap a variety of surfaces, drum style, as the rubber head and hard wood makes a great double sided mallet. This little boy wanted to make it into a shaker, and he chose to use the inside cup of a coffee percolator. Mom helped him attach it to the pencil, and cover the top with clear plastic so the beans would make a great sound. There are many more ideas and a delightful slide show of children with their creations. Children and families have enjoyed this challenge with us each February at Music Connections for over 10 years, and these students are so proud to show us their creations.
While listening to music as a family, and even with a group of friends, let your artistic side enjoy adding color to your world. The coloring pages at this link give you some defined options for focusing in on the delight that music brings to your family life. Or just start with a blank sheet of paper. Draw and color how the music makes you feel. Learn how these two creative processes work together to integrate your brain and bring a sense of calm.
Teaching our children to share the love with music can happen within our everyday friendships, but can also go a bit farther, to reach those who are less likely to be surrounded by so much.
Share the love of music with others in your community who may really benefit from some additional support. There are single moms, and single dads out there struggling to do the best for their family. You may know of someone, and/or your community may have a non-profit that provides services for young families struggling to get past extreme hardships. When you are making your pencil instruments, or creating beautiful art, can you make a few extras to share? Perhaps you can leave a completed coloring page with a creative music activity you enjoy, and a blank one together on the porch of a neighbor who could use the love, or a old beat up car in your store’s parking lot that has a car seat in the back. Perhaps you can invite all the neighbors children to bring their new Valentine’s Pencils over and have a craft party to make creative instruments.
Share the Love with Music with a Local Non-Profit
In Lakeland, our community is blessed to have the New Life Center for Family Preservation. It’s specialty is finding pregnant women who are in at-risk situations, sometime homeless because of their circumstances. You can learn more about their wide variety of services, including personal care, a home to live in, and a place to gain work experience as they gain the skills and confidence to become active and successful at raising a family and recognizing and fulfilling their potential in this world. Our local Kindermusik families are offering a variety of donations to support these young families, including instruments and music for these young families to enjoy at home. Learn more in this article, and watch a video of one of the women who is a success story. And find out how you, and your little ones, can reach out to share the love of music with these folks, or others like them in your own community.
Your ability to share the love of music starts at home. Kindermusik makes it easy. Come visit, make music with us, and see what adding music to your daily routines can do for your child, and your family. Your first visit is always free. As I want to share the love with music… with everyone, and you will find a whole community of families who share this love and desire. We look forward to making music with you and your family.
In the comments below, tell us your ideas on how you Share the Love with Music. I’m watching.