Meaningful Moments Making Music

“Let’s sing it again, Mom.”  Music is such a part of our environment that we sometimes take its power and appeal for granted.   But for children, music is a natural way to express themselves, to become part of a family and community and to learn about the world.

Children are born music makers.  Recent brain research shows that very young infants can recognize melodies, match pitches and show pleasure when Mom or Dad sings to them.  Music is full of the very things that children need to learn best: predictable structure, opportunity for repetition and emotional and sensory stimulation that inspires engagement. 

You and your child can participate in music through singing, playing instruments, dancing, moving or listening.  The songs that children love best are the ones that they share with you.  Don’t be concerned with sounding like the performers you hear on television- make the musical moment meaningful by just being you and embracing your child’s musical joy and creativity.

Music making can be even more significant for a child with special needs.  Children with developmental challenges often have difficulty with communication, language and socialization.   The unique quality of music is that it provides for communication without language, allowing the child to connect with you and friends through reciprocal play.  Singing songs gives children a chance to practice and remember words, sentences and social language.

If you notice that your child with special needs is uniquely responsive to music, you might find music therapy to be a beneficial addition in a comprehensive therapeutic program.  Music therapists design and provide music experiences to help your child reach identified goals and can show you how to make musical moments truly meaningful.

  • Music Therapy is a well-established, research-based profession in which music is used to achieve therapeutic and educational goals. Music Therapy helps to improve a child’s cognitive, social, physical, psychological, and communication functioning.
  • Music therapists design and implement music sessions for individuals and groups based on the specific needs of the children. Children may sing songs, use musical gestures, play special instruments and learn through music in order to meet individual goals and objectives.
  • Music therapy is recognized by the Department of Education as a related service under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act or IDEA.
  • While Music therapy sessions might look like other music programs, music therapy is always based on therapeutic and educational goals and provided by a qualified music therapist.
  • To find out more or to find a music therapist in your area, go to or

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