Thursday, March 11, 2010

Wonder Why Wednesday: Singing in the...

I sing and hum to my children, often like most parents. I am a bad singer, but they really like it, among other things I do for them. Music and my singing calms them. None of their family members have musical inclinations, so they will probably have a strong musical intelligence. Nonetheless, we do lots of singing.

Why do kids like singing so much? They learn when singing-the alphabet, rhyming, numbers, and animal sounds-but it goes beyond the facts that have been put to words. Tonight when my hubby ran in the store to grab something, I was left alone with two tired children and so I naturally sang to them, which calmed them. I've made long drives and sang to soothe crying babies until my throat hurt. So I know kids like singing, but why?

The entire brain is engaged and stimulated when singing, according to this
interesting article. Chicago Children's Museum also provides these facts:
  • Singing with a recording is not as productive as singing with another person.
  • Singing enhances language learning.
  • Singing stimulates both new learning and memory. 
So, is it a fair assessment that my kids are happy because they are learning? They receive gratification because they are communicating? Maybe they are happy because mom is silly. Maybe they are happy because of the tone of my voice. Maybe, my singing makes them happy for all these reasons.