Raising children is probably one of the most challenging, exciting, and rewarding jobs in the world. I take all things I do in life and must make the most of it, be the best, try my hardest. Parenting was no exception.
I struggled growing up. My parents weren’t well off and my siblings never liked to spend time with me. I was the youngest of 3, with a different father than my sisters. That led to the dislike of me.
Feeling the negativity in my house all the time I was an outdoorsy kid. Always reaching out to play with my friends from school every day. Hoping they would ask me over for dinner or a sleepover, so I didn’t have to go home to the miserable dark hole. Often my best friends were busy in after school classes their parents had enrolled them in.
Hobbies… What are those? I only had hand me down barbies from my sisters that stayed in moving boxes in the basement. I did have a bookshelf of the classic “Gold Books” that I had read too many times to count. I wished I had the opportunity to do what my friends were doing. Learning to swim, sports… play musical instruments. Anything.
Listening to Classical Music
My best friend lived 4 doors down from me and almost every weekend would have me sleep over. She was an only child at the time of our friendship. What does that have to do with anything? Everything… Her dad was sent on leave to Bosnia months on end. Her mom loved having me over to distract her from being home alone all the time.
Aside from me filling her evenings, she had many of those hobbies to fill up her free time. I was always fascinated by the things she would tell me and teach me. She seemed like the happiest, smartest person I knew.
When younger it always stood out to me that the kids that had all these extra classes outside of school were smart. Like they never had to try at anything… Just pure lucky.
At one sleepover my friend showed me her new favourite music cd. It was so strange to listen to, but also, so beautiful. She said it was classical and she was learning how to play it at her piano lessons. I wondered why they didn’t just learn how to play the Backstreet Boys or Spice Girls… That would be so cool.
We started playing the classical music while we were doing all our regular sleep over things. It was strange to me the affects I was feeling from the music. Usually, we would be playing our awesome pop music and be all goofy. With classical music playing I was oddly more Zen and focused. My artwork I was drawing became more creative and I was less agitated with how the outcomes were.
My sleep on the nights I was there was over the moon better. My friend would play the music until we fell asleep. Which was almost instantly! Voodoo!
Beneficial Brain Development in Children
As a grown adult now, I still dive into classical music when I know I am starting to spiral or need that extra focused mind. Thankful that I had that friend to show me how beneficial classical music can be. Even my husband plays classical music while meditating or reading.
Throughout my entire pregnancy I would play classical music for the baby to hear. I had read studies on how beneficial classical music is for brain development. I had elevated blood pressure during pregnancy that was corrected with classical music. My stress was off the charts also, until I remembered the magic of classical music.
Routinely every day I made sure to get 20 minutes of classical music into my soul. Knowing it not only was doing tremendous beneficial things for myself but my developing baby too.
Story Time With Classical Music for Kids
Now that my baby was getting a bit older, I wanted to start reading to him. Even though he wasn’t understanding what I was saying I knew he could see colours and shapes. A babies mind rapidly growing and developing every minute of the day. I wanted to nourish him with every ounce I could.
That was when I started to wonder if there were ever any classical kids’ music collections. Ways to get toddlers into the mindset of connecting music to real life at a young age. I had found Mozart for Babies DVDs.
I didn’t want the experience to be on a screen though, I wanted to the whole experience to be in a classic way. Music, books, pictures, textures, and peace of mind.
That was when I stumbled upon Music and Narrative. I found a place that supported what we wanted to give our growing child. The first book we purchased has such meaning and depth to it. Reading the book at different age groups will continue to bring more meaning to the story. AND it also has a classical music soundtrack to go with it as you are reading to bring the story to life.
We have a fond bond with the illustrations of the books as well, being keen readers, we like to have a classic vibe to our books. Our little boy just loves the animals and music when I am playing it, he falls asleep after every session leaving us both content with the bedtime routine.
Classical music with stories might be the most genius parental gift you can give your child. The development advantages and self-awareness that reading, classical music and quality time spent together gives you and your child are way too great to not practice.
I cannot wait for the next book to come out and enjoy with my little man.