Wednesday, September 17, 2008


I'm not much of a singer. In second grade, they picked kids for a school choir and I wasn't chosen. I didn't sing out loud, even by myself until my junior year of high school when I had to sing to audition for a theatre group. I got in, but I didn't sing in the group.

When I was pregnant with Ian, I took a few singing lessons at Mercyhurst College from an elderly nun named Sister Helen Jean. She was incredibly gifted at explaining abstract concepts in concrete terms, like how to visualize in order to get a better sound. She really helped me. I wasn't trying to be an opera quality singer, like Mercyhurst specializes in, I just wanted to be able to sing to my baby without embarrassment.

Little did I know that every Mommy & Me activity from swimming to gymnastics would involve parental singing. Little kids don't sing so if the parents don't help out the teacher, the teacher is on her own. Many parents are shy about singing, but since I had my lessons, I try to sing loudly so others feel comfortable joining in. I do this in yoga as well with chanting, because many people are uncomfortable with it.

What is wonderful about singing to Ian is that he says"Yay!" after I sing a song he likes. What appreciation!

I do want him to have music in his life. I do not play any instruments or sing very well and I really think I am missing out. I wish we were the family that gets the guitar out after dinner and sings, but Curt doesn't play any instruments either. Maybe guitar is another hobby I can take up someday...


Connie said...

I can never remember the words to songs. That was ok with my son, I just made stuff up and he liked (still likes) the sound of my voice. Now Honor. She has musician genes. She could sing tunes as a babe in arms well enough for us to name the song, even before she could say the words (or letters, for ABC). With Honor, I am supposed to know all the words, tunes, etc. of every song she has ever heard in her life... "you know mom, the one we sang 2 years ago in Ms. Brenda's class??" :-D

Bravo to you for being so brave. I agree. I may feel silly for not ever remembering the words to anything, but I will open my mouth and sing anyway - to encourage my kids, as well as other kids and parents. Better to try, and feel a bit silly, than be one who is afraid to join in and miss all the fun. I think that not only is music itself good for your kids, but the action of joining in, and seeing mom or dad not be afraid to join in, is good for their confidence.

Sarah said...

I learned to play the piano when I was seven and took lessons until I was around 18. Then I taught at a local music store. I think the youngest kid I taught was four years old. He was just old enough to have some fun learning some notes on the keyboard and bang through a simple tune in a half hour lesson. He really enjoyed it. I agree with getting kids involved in music from a young age. I should dust off my piano so my baby can get an early start!