The Benefits of Singing for Children: Improving The Mental Health of Your Child Through Music
Did you know singing improves the emotional development of a child? Singing has an array of benefits, and some are not as obvious as you would think. Do you know the benefits of singing for children: improving the mental health of your child through music?
Did you know music and singing have become a handy educational tool during the COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns? Teachers are relying on music to engage younger students that are not used to learning online.
The Benefits of Singing for Children.
1. Easy Engagement.
Firstly, children don’t need much encouragement to play, and singing often falls into the category of ‘play’ for most children. It comes very naturally to most children. Singing can help them engage with friends allowing for opportunities to express themselves and use their vocabulary creatively.
Secondly, singing is a great way to encourage storytelling, build a small child’s memory of important information, i.e. “Heads and shoulders, knees and toes”, and even talk about their feelings, i.e. “If You’re Happy and You Know it Clap Your Hands”.
Self-expression is crucial to a child’s development and growth. Through singing and songwriting, children can experience:
- Social cohesion.
- Build confidence.
- Engage in a creative form of self-expression.
- Develop resilience.
Furthermore, engaging in the simple practice of singing has the power to impact positively on your child’s moods, emotions, and feelings.
COVID-19 and The Importance of Self-Expression.
Lockdowns have proven to be a challenging time for kids around the world. Hugs and kisses have become a complicated topic of discussion for parents. Children are naturally tactile beings. Generally speaking, they greet friends and family with affection. Additionally, children express love by standing close to people, holding hands, giggling cheek to cheek, and rolling around on the carpet at school.
For the most part, human contact is (or should be) a fundamental part of our daily life. However, in 2020 we all found ourselves at the beginning of the pandemic. Thereafter, a basic hug became a negative ‘no, no’. As a result, we needed to learn to rely on other types of self-expression.
3. Learning Through Creative Play.
We know that it is through creative play that little people stumble across great learning opportunities:
- Social conformity.
- Negotiating and problem solving.
In fact, singing and music create an excellent opportunity for children and students to learn in a positive and carefree environment and are viewed by many educators as ‘learning through play.
At a time where many schools are removing the creative arts from curriculums, there has never been a more critical time for parents to encourage the use of music and singing in their child’s everyday lives.
As a music teacher, I have seen this first hand, and it saddens me that any child could be missing out on this great learning opportunity at school.
This, in part, led me to write and publish ‘The creative Songwriting Journal’.
My Experience With Music Therapy and Mental Health
I was diagnosed with cyclothymia in my 30’s (it’s a fancy word for being on the bipolar spectrum). Singing for me allowed me to be myself, express how I feel through words and melody.
I now teach singing and songwriting to all ages. It fills me with joy to watch other people connect to themselves and each other through music, whether through a one-on-one lesson, in my choirs, workshops, dementia care homes or with my brain injury group. In 2015, I embarked on a scientific route to understanding the why and how of what I was doing.
In 2019, I finished my master’s degree (with distinctions) in Vocal Pedagogy Applied Professional Practice, researching and specialising in singing and wellbeing.
My book, The Creative Songwriting Journal.
My journal is a complete kit, providing the tools to build confidence, encourage creativity, and support self-expression through the medium of songwriting. It has also been endorsed by the UK Parenting Expert, Sue Atkins.
This is the book I wish I had been given when I was lost, unhappy, and desperately wanting to be understood and heard.
Children not only need a creative space for self-expression, they absolutely deserve to be able to use music for their mental health and general wellbeing. Music is a free and fantastic tool that can help children navigate their way through childhood and beyond.
To contact Sophie:
£1 of every book sale goes to Young Minds charity.