Thursday, August 12, 2010

Slip in a Musical Term Here and There...

I love the idea of subliminal messages and "learning through osmosis"--especially when it comes to teaching kids words and ideas w/o them knowing it!

Sometimes music lessons or music class can be overwhelming to students of all ages,  when they see the amounts of terms, phrases, symbols, signs, concepts, methods, etc that are needed to be learned.
Some concepts and terms can be added to daily life, thus teaching the definition of those concepts and terms w/o ever using a flashcard or opening a book.

An easy term to start using with your children is "rest".  Now the musical definition of rest is, an interval of silence corresponding to one of the possible time values within a measure. I like to tell my students that it simply means silence. 

I started using the word "rest" as a buzz word meaning quiet, when I was teaching in an elementary music classroom.  There were 31 kids and they were all talking at once and not responding to my shush-ing.  I used my hands to make a "cut-off" motion like a conductor would, and said "rest" in a firm voice.  The combo of the hand movement and a different word than what they were used to, caught them off guard and silenced them.  From that time on, rest was our buzz word for quiet. 

I started using it with my own children when they were young and would bang on the table or their high chair tray.  One day there was so much commotion that I tried it and sure enough it caught their attention too.  So when those kids were old enough for me to begin teaching them piano, the concept of rest was already in their brain!

If you have an idea of a musical term or concept that can be used in daily life, please leave it in a comment.  I'd love to hear what you have to say!!

1 comment:

  1. Good idea. It also works for teaching foreign languages.