We had different reactions when reviewing Musical Me! The music person on our team was excited to see a children’s app that so thoughtfully included solfege for kids (I told you she was a music person) while those of us with a tin ear were thrilled to be able to master well chosen favorite childhood songs.
We ALL saw the educational value for young children. One of our child testers astutely pointed out that it helped him with his memory and concentration (six year old’s can be very reflective). The children enjoyed playing the songs that they knew and really loved to sing along with their parents!
Five activities work with your child on dance, rhythm, memory, instruments and notes. You will find both free play activities and challenging levels that will test even the parents. Very little direction is needed. A wonderful “learn by discovery” app.
Oh my, do kids change quickly in their early years. Here are two examples of ways to weave this app into your child’s playtime.
Activity 1: Music With Your 6-Year-Old
Your 6-year-old has changed a lot since age 4. They now enjoy more structured activities. They still might have a strong independent streak but often enjoy working with friends and family on projects. They also have the capacity to learn and repeat specific melody lines as are presented in Musical Me!
Many schools with music programs start children on recorders at about 2nd or 3rd grade. Your ears may not enjoy it, but if you haven’t started your child on an instrument yet – the recorder is a great place to start. Now I highly suggest taking a trip to a nearby music store. If you are short on time there is always Amazon where you can get a recorder and instruction book for under $20.
Even if you don’t play an instrument, the recorder is easy to learn. Help your child get started and then let them explore different notes and sounds on the instrument. Suggest they try to play along with the songs in Musical Me! and other music apps you have. Often time the first songs in beginner music books are children’s music!
Activity 2: Music With Your 4-Year-Old
Generally children around age four are rapidly expanding how they communicate and express themselves, and they really want to try out all kinds of new experiences. Children at this age also start to develop an independent streak – they want less help from others, even when they need it. This is a great age to have your child start exploring with musical instruments and sounds.
While playing Musical Me! inspire your child to think about what instruments they can make from stuff around the house. Need inspiration? The app includes a variety of percussion instruments. See if your child has any ideas on how to make their own percussion instruments to use while the app is playing. Let them get creative and problem solve to make their instruments. No going on google to look up specific instructions!
Okay I’ll give you some hints: Make sure you have some rice, beans or pasta on hand for the shakers. Also chopsticks, spoons and twigs work for drum sticks. A favorite is to make a home guitar: shoe box & rubber bands!