Social-emotional learning is a critical piece to positive early childhood development, and we know that music can accelerate this growth.
But how can educators use music to boost social-emotional skills in physically-distanced or virtual classrooms?
And what does it look like by age? Pair our free, colorful infographic with the quick tips below to keep track of SEL milestones and consider how music can elevate this critical piece of early development!
Music moves us. It’s a plain and simple truth, common to human beings all around the world since time began. In fact, it’s happened to you. You hear a certain song, and it instantly and vividly takes you back to a specific time, place, and memory. We know that there’s a deep-seated and innate response to music, even in very young children. And when you intentionally and consistently make music a part of a child’s life, music will strengthen a child’s emotional development and bonding with the loving adults in his/her life.
One of the often overlooked benefits of early music education and particularly a program like Kindermusik is that the music experience itself – both in class and at home – actually promotes healthy social-emotional development, a vital part of early childhood development. A class like Kindermusik gives families a place to just be together, and that together time with music becomes the basis for the kinds of things that contribute to happy, healthy, confident children.
The early years
In the early years, strong emotional ties are fostered as mom or dad cuddle, sway, or bounce their little one while humming a lullaby, rocking to a favorite song, or dancing around the room. Loving intentional touch during massage time releases those “feel-good” hormones in the brain responsible for feelings of safety and security. And a Kindermusik-inspired lullaby ritual before naptime or bedtime becomes a cherished time that strengthens the loving bonds between parent and child.
The toddler years
Later on, the time spent enjoying music together becomes a way to spend quality time, to enter into the child’s world through imagination and play, and to express through music sometimes what words cannot. It’s during these sometimes turbulent years of toddler-hood that children most need those special reassurances of their parents’ love, interest, and care.
The preschool years
As a child moves into the preschool and early school years, the security of the emotional bond with a parent paves the way for developing healthy relationships with peers and teachers. A child is ready and able to expand on the social skills that were first developed in the early years, skills that lead to confident and happy interactions with others.
Nothing more powerful than music
When it comes to your child’s social-emotional development from newborn to 7 years, there’s nothing more that will impact him more than experiencing the benefits of music, and no better choice for delivering those benefits than Kindermusik.
Learning how to express frustration appropriately.
Figuring out conflicts peacefully.
Helping someone who has been hurt.
Enjoying the company of others.
Internal motivation to succeed.
All of these qualities (and more!) describe what we all wish to see as parents is the healthy social development of our children. Like any skill, young children develop these abilities in small steps over time, and they learn them from you, their first social connection and teacher. On the whole, young children who spend time singing, playing, and moving with other children are better prepared to be confident and self-aware, build positive relationships with peers, and get the best out of the learning environments and opportunities that life will bring them…just one of the many reasons that Kindermusik is so much more than music!
The Kindermusik classroom is the perfect place for your child to practice and develop social skills. Our activities help children learn to work with, understand, and enjoy others, while teaching parents to model activities that include social interaction and the joy of learning. At every level from Birth – 7, Kindermusik curricula are written to support the development of your child’s social & emotional skills with age-appropriate, challenging activities.
In fact, studies show that music and movement experiences in a group setting impact all seven areas of social-emotional development* identified by researchers. Those seven areas are: