My last blog post talked about the therapeutic benefits of in-home music lessons and how improvement in the areas of fine motor, self-esteem and attention span are evident. In addition to these goal areas, a child can improve his or her communication skills, social interaction and ability to follow directions by engaging in music therapy and in-home lessons.
In our world today, a high level of communicative skills is almost essential. Whether verbal/oral or non-verbal (writing, facial expressions, etc.), everyone needs to possess some way of interacting with the people around them. This, in turn, helps increase social skills and self-esteem. In-home music lessons and music therapy sessions can greatly improve a child’s ability to communicate effectively.
Learning Songs Helps:
By learning songs and playing an instrument like during private guitar lessons, a child gradually learns how to communicate musically (non-verbally) which, for a lot of children, makes them feel comfortable. For a lot of children (and most people for that matter), it is difficult to talk about particular situations, ranging from having a bad day at school to severe traumatic experiences. Thus, a child can communicate his or her feelings and emotions through music. In addition, for most of my students, I play an accompaniment along with them once they have mastered a song. I find that this helps them feel even more comfortable, helps with communication and encourages social interaction between teacher and student. These music therapy strategies utilized in sessions and during in-home music lessons can be applied to other aspects of the child’s life.
Social Skills/Social Interaction:
In-home music lessons and music therapy sessions are a great way for children to interact with their teacher, parents and peers their own age. It provides them with opportunities to feel good about themselves after learning a tricky piece of music and then showing off their talents to others. I try to encourage my students to play songs that they have been working on for their family, friends and in their music class at school.
Excitement In Music Lessons:
Growing up, I remember the excitement I felt after mastering a piece of music and playing it during a recital, piano festival or simply for my family and friends. Through music therapy and in-home music lessons, a child can increase his or her social interaction. In addition, drum circles, sing-a-longs and playing or singing in a musical ensemble with peers all help create a sense of involvement, belonging and teamwork, thus creating opportunities to build social skills.
To function in society, there are certain things that a child needs to learn that are not necessarily taught to them in the classroom. Along with academic, social and communication skills, a child needs to learn how to follow directions given to them by an authority figure. This is important not just to succeed at home and at school, but also because it prepares them for their future and encourages them to listen to people, follow the rules and make positive choices, thus avoiding run-ins with the law etc.
When a child is engaged in music therapy and in-home music lessons, they are taught that “practice makes perfect” (or as close to it as one can get) and that the teacher and parents know best. In addition to this, music is a separate language that children are learning with rules of its own that need to be followed. Although music making has a lot of gray areas, the basic rules are black and white.
In-home music lessons and music therapy sessions can help a child learn to communicate more effectively, thus increasing levels of social interaction. In addition, they learn to follow the rules of music and, in turn, are encouraged to follow directions in every aspect of their lives. There are a plethora of benefits to music therapy and in-home lessons and these are just a few. Contact us today to learn more!