How do you learn to read music?
When couples marry, they are often horrified at the Christmas traditions of their in-laws. “But you don’t have any Christmas stockings!” “You’ve only got roast turkey, you should have roast chicken as well!” “We can’t open the presents on Christmas Eve, are you crazy?” When these couples have their own children, they have to choose their own ways for their newly created family to celebrate Christmas. In the same way, parents can create musical opportunities for their family so that a love for music is standard.
Find a good teacher- ask parents who their child learns with and if they enjoy their lessons. When your child starts lessons, explain to their teacher that you are keen to support your child’s music education. Good teachers give parents practical suggestions on how to help at home.
Go to concerts- start with casual environments like street performances and free outdoor concerts. Casual environments mean you can slip away if your child’s attention span isn’t long enough for the whole performance, and also gives them the freedom to dance or to ask loud questions. If possible, take your child to speak to one of the performers; some musicians are happy to give a quick demonstration of how their instrument makes music. Don’t limit yourself to “children’s music”; be as adventurous as you like. Discover music of different cultures and orchestral music.
Watch other children play music- ring a music school and ask for tickets to their concert. Children are fascinated by watching the performances of other children, which builds their confidence and interest in music. Another idea is to go along to a music lesson of your child’s friend or relative- just ask the teacher first.