This is not really related to music as such, but something I am thinking about quite a lot. My children are 2 and 5 (very nearly 3 and 6, with the 3 year old highly likely to celebrate her birthday in lockdown mode as it is towards the end of April). At this age we are lucky that the absence of formal school will not make much difference to their education. They are young enough that the stuff we do at home, playing board games, playing Lego, playing pretend, running about in the garden, are educational in themselves.
My son’s school have prepared a homework pack and we will probably do some of that if only as something different to do. However, I am not going to rush to get him to do all of the work every day because I want it to last. The school term should have lasted another 3 weeks, but we will not be leaving the house much for a lot longer I anticipate, so we have tonnes of time to do it in.
I am going to do a bit of a timetable for the week because I think my son especially will work well with a structure to his day- who am I kidding, one of the benefits of going back to work after a long absence with the children was getting that structure back into my life, so we all thrive with at least some structure?
We have been self-isolating for nearly a week now, and while I did put together a rough timetable for the week, it slipped a lot. That is fine in itself, but we really noticed a difference in how frustrated the children got with us, with each other and us with them on the days where we just drifted rather than did anything defined.
I am going to keep the weekends largely practical music-making-free, or rather directed music free so that the music activities we do are part of our “homeschool” timetable. And there will be quite a lot of them. After all, I am a preschool music teacher, this is what I know!! We still have a lot of music on at home all day. Listening to music and lots of different types of music is really good for children. Music and early exposure to music can help your little ones with forming connections in their brains. And it’s fun.
I often post on Instagram or Twitter the music that we have on when playing using the hashtag #musictoplayto. For example, on Friday we did some painting while listening to the fabulous Honey Siren II (Full Like Drips) by Oliver Leith. The children were trying to paint butterflies, but the watercolours we were using didn’t quite work, we’ll have to try again with acrylic paint next week. I would love to see what music you are listening to while playing or painting or cooking or anything really, so I’d love it if you joined me using #musictoplayto