Last night as my son was taking a break from a difficult homework assignment, he went to the piano. His stress began to melt away as he played. After a few songs he was ready to get back to work. The power of music is incredible!
Both our son and daughter relax by playing some of their favourite songs on the piano. Music has always been a big part of our home. We listen to music of different genres. All three of our children started playing piano at a young age, and when it came time to choose an instrument in school, our sons chose clarinet and our daughter chose the flute. Every spring two of our children play in a community orchestra accompanying singers and dancers at an evening of Broadway tunes put on for members of our community.
The journey to become proficient in playing an instrument can be long and not always easy. Sometimes practice can be a chore. Preparing for a “family concert” at a family gathering can be a great way to get your child excited about practising. I remember as a teenager begging my parents to let me quit piano one year. I was working on Hungarian Dance, No. 5 by Brahms – a piece my grey haired teacher loved; me, not so much at the time. My dad took me to the music store and let me buy some sheet music I heard on the radio. He gave me $1 for every new song I learned to play just until I no longer was anxious to quit. My friends and I would belt out the songs while I played. We were awesome!
Dad would take time to sit and listen to me play, even for just a few minutes, and it made me feel special. Now, I sometimes drop what I am doing and go sit in the room to listen when one of my children starts to play. If I am cooking dinner, I will call out how beautiful their playing is. Anyone can thrive with a little love and encouragement.
Our children have many interests including playing basketball and volleyball, running, photography, sewing, cooking international food, reading, and playing board games. I am just thrilled that they enjoy a variety of activities and have found what speaks to them.