Raising Musical Kids

This is a monthly post on 'Book Review for Parents'. Every 1st week of the month I will post review of the books that I have read with regards to raising our children.

I am mindful that I may be labelled as vain & boastful because my child can do this & that at tender age.  But I thought it may also be useful to share my experience with parents with young ones so that they can start their children early in music appreciation.  I pray that you will find my sharing helpful. 

I would like to begin with two verses taken from Ephesians 5:19 & Colossians 3:16 (KJV). Ephesians 5:19 says, “Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns & spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord,” & in Colossians 3:16, “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching & admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.

I was like many parents with young ones who have these questions: “Should we send our child for music lessons?”, “What is the good age to start learning music?”, “What kind of instrument is more suitable?”, etc.

All my questions were almost answered when I came across this book written by Pastor Patrick Kavanaugh called ‘Raising Musical Kids’.  I would encourage you to pick it up to read for yourselves too.  There is another book called ‘My First Hymnal’ which is very suitable for young children who just started learning piano.  All the hymns in the book have musical scores that are meant to be played with 1 hand only.  Children who have just started learning piano can play the musical scores while learning to sing the hymns. 




Usually, children will begin loving what their parents love.  At home, we will usually turn on classical music, hymns & children’s rhymes so that my son AJ gets to learn to sing or be familiar with the songs.  The more the child listens to these, the more he/she gets familiar with them, & the easier it becomes for them to pick up a love for music.  

When I teach AJ a new song, I will usually print a big copy of the lyrics & paste it on the wall.  I would sing & point to him the words.  He gets to read the words, listen to my singing & on the 2nd or 3rd attempt, he will sing along with me.  Thereafter, he will go to the wall to sing the song on request or on his own.  To keep the singing interest alive, we will also record on video the new song that he has just learnt to get him more excited with learning new songs.  He is most interested to see the playbacks & will request to see them over & over again. 

When AJ was about 2 years old, we bought musical instruments suitable for young children like the recorder, harmonica & digital keyboard to teach him to play simple tunes to keep his interest going.  At around 2.5 years old, we sent him to a music school for group lessons, & eventually introduced him to a personal piano tutor at around 3 when he was ready.

During Sunday worship, we will sing hymns aloud next to him & point to him the lyrics.  We will also encourage him to join us in the chorus if there is. With time, we hope to nurture his love for music and hymns.

We are reminded in the book of Psalms at least 5 times to make a joyful noise unto the Lord, & several times to make music unto the Lord with harps and trumpets.  Certainly, it is pleasing to the Lord if one can play musical instruments and sing with joy unto Him.  It not only enriches one’s soul, it also serves to encourage others.  In addition, there are more avenues of service to the Lord in the future when the child grows up. However, while some children have & others do not have a particular aptitude & inclination for music, all can be taught to sing & praise God.

We do not envision that AJ will be a great musician, but we do hope that he will love music as he grows up & to have a talent for music for God’s glory. The following is a hymn played & sung by him when he turned 3. It is entitled “Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee”.




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9 comments

  1. I feel that the encouragement to do something like that is so valuable. The kids get such an appreciation for the "art".

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    1. Thanks Kung. It has not been an easy road & likely to get tougher as the child grows older with more distractions/workload along the way.

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  2. Wonderful Wonderful Wonderful. We grew up in a house filled with music, I play 6 musical instruments and my siblings are multi talented too. AJ is wonderful long may his love affair with music continue

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    1. You kidding Anita! 6 musical instruments! How did you manage that?

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  3. So AJ's music journey really started from very young! May I know where do you get the 2 books recommended in your blog above? Thank you.

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    1. http://www.amazon.com/Raising-Musical-Kids-Great-Develop/dp/0892839031/ref=sr_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1389163335&sr=1-3&keywords=raising+musical+kids

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    2. http://www.amazon.com/My-First-Hymnal-Bible-Songs/dp/0917143353/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1389163404&sr=1-1&keywords=my+first+hymnal

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    3. CE, Amazon sells. The links are above.

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  4. Well, music keeps brain active and improves memory which is essential for growing children. Music also improves concentration therefore music should be an integral part of children’s lives. These books are good to learn music. There are various musical instruments for kids can be found in market. Melodica is one of them. To learn how to play it visit http://www.melodicaworld.com/

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