We are born raising our voices - loud and proud. Here are 10 helpful tips to foster confidence and bravery in your young singer.
Seek out a community of support for your child’s talents. It’s my hope that every child finds their “thing.” Finding a supportive community to help make those “things” a reality is of paramount importance.
Focus on the effort they put forth. Say things like:
- Wow you really worked hard on that song. I know it took a lot of time and effort to memorize all those words, good job.
- It took a great deal of courage to sing in front of people today. I really admire you for your bravery.
Remember that every voice is beautiful and unique and there is no need for comparisons. It takes a great deal of bravery to bare one’s soul and sing. It can feel very vulnerable and exposed to make a noise that comes from your very being and let everyone hear it. We want those voices to be heard, so encourage your singer to sing proudly without judgment. The seeds of confidence are planted very young. The seeds of insecurity are as well.
Not everyone has to want to be a professional to benefit from an active participation in music. We’re talking about fostering a lifelong love of expression, joy and beauty. Fostering cultural connections and building community. The life lessons your child will learn from structured learning experience in music will stay with them for a lifetime, no matter the path they choose.
Get to know your child’s teacher, be it a private instructor or ensemble director. Take a moment to pop in at the drop off or pick up, just to connect and keep the lines of communication open.
Engage in your child’s practice. You can ask them or their teacher what they should be working on at home. Encourage at home practice and give friendly reminders. Private lessons should be met with respect from your child as you are making a financial and time commitment to their musical growth. It’s good to let them know that comes with an expectation of investment on their part. It’s a great opportunity to teach responsibility and personal ownership.
Provide a nutritious snack before lessons. Kids today put in long days! Help avoid brain fog and focus issues by making sure kids get a snack after school before taking on even more focus driven activities.
Understand that building skills takes time. Foster an understanding that long term goals are met by all the smaller short term goals we meet along the way. Not to mention the fact that young voices go through a lot as bodies change and we grow into full grown humans.
Know that not everyone gets the solo. Not everyone gets a leading role. But showing up, being a part of a choir or a show is chock full of life lessons and opportunities for growth. Any ensemble relies on the participation and success of each and every member.
Remember that your child looks to you when they fear they’ve failed. They look to you when they feel proud and want to know if you are proud of them too. It’s the reflection of themselves they see in you that matters more than anything. So make that reflection a positive one - steadfast and calm.