Hudson Valley Parent

HVP - September 2014

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18 Hudson Valley Parent ■ September 2014 By LEANNE SOWUL I f you have a child in public school, there's a good chance that music is part of his school day. As some- one who has been teaching music in elementary schools in the Hudson Valley for the last 10 years, I'd like to offer eight tips for getting involved in your child's music education at home. Not musical? No problem! You don't have to be musical yourself to help your child develop musically. "Music should be a part of the home environment even if, as parents, we don't feel talented or schooled enough in music," says Paul Scatenato, former director of fi ne arts for Hyde Park schools. "Par- ents can still expose their children to a wide variety of music. Just as we are told to read to our children every day, we should be singing to them." Music is fun, but it's also work Like most things in life, music is more fun when you're good at it. That's why practice, both alone and with others, is necessary. Take video games, for example. Playing is fun, but you still have to practice to reach each new level — and then it gets even more fun! Commitment is also key, says Scatenato. "You're going to set your child up for failure if you go into it saying, 'We're going to try it for a month.' Be in it for the long haul." There is no one "easiest" instrument to play The "easiest" instrument for your child to learn to play is the one he likes best and suits him physically and musically. "If your child expresses interest in any musical instrument, and their attention span is there, then go with what they love," says Mike Ben- ninger, director of The New Windsor Music Academy. "If they're having fun with it, they'll learn and enjoy it. If they're not having fun, then it be- comes more diffi cult to stick with it." Exposing your child to instru- Raising a musical child A music teacher offers advice to parents The "easiest" instrument for your child to play is the one he likes best and suits him physically and musically. (Continued on Page 20)

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