The school-age children at the Canandaigua / Farmington center have been working hard on writing and performing their own songs! Their talent and creativity extends to building recognizable and elaborate musical instruments to use as props in their performances. Their building materials of choice are K’NEX, which encourage fine motor and special reasoning development. Their imaginations have been stimulated as they build everything from microphones and drum sets to guitars and pianos.
There are many benefits to children in singing and songwriting as well. These activities encourage language development, self-expression, vocal imitation, boost self-confidence, aid in communication, strengthen vocabulary, and teach children how to rhyme words and keep rhythm. The children have also built up their social skills through these activities as they have to work together to write lyrics, assign roles, listen to each other for cues as they sing and dance, and work out how to use each of their friend’s talents in a way that makes everyone feel valued and included.
There are many studies on the benefits of music and singing. They have shown that singing causes the brain to perform multiple tasks at once. This helps to develop the memory. The brain learns to handle more tasks than it is required to perform simultaneously from remembering lyrics to remembering a cue to start singing. It has also been shown that singing gets endorphins flowing in the brain as it causes the body to feel good and increases the brains activity. These benefits have certainly been in evidence in our school-age room! The children have been very focused as they create new songs and instruments; you can see their enjoyment with each performance!