Most parents are familiar with the benefits of music education. For example, they know that children who study a musical instrument have better language and reading skills, higher standardized test scores, and improved math skills. What they may not know, however, is how to integrate music lessons into their homeschooling routines.
For that reason, we sat down with J. Stuart Fessant—a lifelong jazz musician, composer, and educator—to put together a list of five practical tips to help you integrate music education into your homeschooling routine.
Music is tuneful, ‘beatful,’ and artful.
Before dive in, it might help to start with an overarching philosophy that’s easily understood and implemented. Fortunately, Mr. Fessant provides a wonderful teaching philosophy that is astonishingly simple yet elegant. “Music is tuneful, ‘beatful,’ and artful,” he says.
Tip #1: Start with What Your Kids Like
Don’t worry about introducing your kids to the “great works of art” like Beethoven and Mozart or Steve Vai and Yngwie Malmsteen. If your kids fall in love with music, then they’ll inevitably be drawn to the great works later. Instead, meet them where they’re at. “If your kid likes to play drums,” Mr. Fessant says, “then lay out the pots and ponds and let them beat on that.”
Tip#2: Sing a lot of Songs
“Tuneful means I can sing songs in my head as well as out loud,” Mr Fessant says. For that reason, it’s a great idea to listen to lots of music around the house and sing along. In our experience teaching hundreds of online guitar lessons for kids, the most talented students are those whose families’ listen to lots of music and sing along! Let me put it another way: If this were a superhero movie, then singing around the house would be the moment when the hero acquires his/her superpowers.
Tip #3: Listen to a lot of Music
Listening to music is one of the best ways to open your child’s ears, broaden their perspectives, and shape their musical curiosity for years to come. For the best results, listen to a wide variety of music from classic rock to classical music, from blues to bluegrass. If you don’t know where to begin, the Rolling Stones 100 Greatest Guitar Songs of All Time is a great place to start!
Tip #4: Tap Out Rhythms
“Beatful means I can find a pulse in the music,” Mr. Fessant says, “or I can keep a pulse.” The easiest way to integrate rhythmic training in your child’s musical practice is by clapping simple rhythms and having them repeat those rhythms back to you. For a wonderful example of this, you can skip to around the 14-minute mark of the video interview below.
Tip #5: Sign Up for Online Guitar Lessons for Kids
Online guitar lessons for kids is the safest and most effective way of bringing the positive power of music education to your home during COVID-19. You can register your kids for online group guitar classes for beginners or private guitar lessons for kids online. During our online guitar classes for kids, students learn fundamental rock guitar techniques, must know musical concepts, and classic rock guitar riffs.
Integrating music education in your homeschooling routine is easy if you follow these five easy tips:
- Start with what your kids like.
- Sing a lot of songs.
- Listen to a lot of music.
- Tap out rhythms.
- Sign up for online guitar lessons for kids.
Finally, don’t be afraid to try things. After all, music is natural. It develops organically as a result of implementing these simple practices on a regular basis. Mr. Fessant said it best, “Music is who we are. It expresses things we can’t express anyway else.”
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Sign up for online guitar lessons for kids today. Want to learn more? Check out Rock Dojo’s FAQs and learn how our colored-belt systems works (here’s a hint: it’s like karate and you graduate with a black belt). Do you have a specific question about our guitar lessons for kids? Drop us a line at (503) 484-6417. Sign up for after-school guitar lessons in Portland, OR, on the Rock Dojo Find a Class page.