Monday, December 18, 2006

Music; A gift for the soul.

Music; A gift for the soul!

Music cleanses the understanding; inspires it, and
lifts it into a realm which it would not reach if it
were left to itself.

~Henry Ward Beecher

All of our children have been registered and assigned music lessons during their schooling. Personally, as I was the lucky recipient of a large oak upright “Willis” piano delivery one year from my parents, the same one I learned to play on as a tot, as did my siblings, all of our children have benefited from owning it. More importantly, the whole family has benefited from hearing the soul filled music directly from children's fingers dancing up and down the keyboard, offering musical tunes to ever permeate through the air of our home and lift our spirits up, sometimes encountering and enjoying impromptu sing alongs.

“I have my own particular sorrows, loves, delights; and you have yours. But sorrow, gladness, yearning, hope, love, belong to all of us, in all times and in all places. Music is the only means whereby we feel these emotions in their universality.”

~ H. A. Overstreet

Ready for her turn, she is thrilled to have a spectator.

For several years just our oldest daughter played, taking lessons from a woman a few blocks away. Then, lucky me, I was able to find a woman who traveled to our home to instruct all four of the older children, each and every Monday morning, for a two hour duration.

Playing a duet together for Christmas.

When this teacher moved away, we found substitutes for the older ones, but when we discovered “Orff” music and theory for the much younger two children, we took a side route for five years to offer this type of unique teaching, and then moved naturally into piano solely as their next music style. As those two children moved easily into piano with their previous music teachings, the two other younger children were taught their music with a parent participation method down the road with a neighbor called “Music for Young children”, another incredible resource that sincerely benefited mother here very much!

Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.
~Berthold Auerbach

With our move to the east side of the country, the former owners directed me to a local piano teacher, only a bike ride away. Last May, after our arrival here, we met with her right away, then the older two began taking lessons from her through to the end of July. By September, we were unable to find local teachers to our other preferred music types with the younger two, so the thought occurred to send them straight into piano lessons with their older siblings.

Over the last three months, all four younger children still residing at home and living here in the east with us, are registered students with this new piano teacher. Week after week, we have been observing the love of music our little ones are expressing and very much enjoying the use of the piano, like the big kids.

They practise their lessons well accompanied at times with a music cd to pretend a whole orchestra is behind them. They work in their theory books, play their scales over and over again, and eagerly learn new tunes each week to build up their music repetoire. Currently there is an abundance of Christmas music being played for the family.

There's always someone hopping on the piano bench to warm up the piano keys and play a tune (or five) for us.

This week I sat in with their lessons, all four back to back for a total of a two hour time slot and thoroughly enjoyed both their playing sessions and the teacher, a friend now to me. We are very pleased with the music included in our parenting philosophy of education, and so very happy to have found a terrific piano teacher locally so quickly.

"It’s such an extraordinary thing, music. It is how we speak to God finally – or how we don’t. Even if we’re ignoring God. It’s the language of the spirit. If you believe that we contain within our skin and bones a spirit that might last longer than your time breathing in and out – if there is a spirit, music is the thing that wakes it up. And it certainly woke up mine. And it seems to be how we communicate on another level."

~ Bono