Whole Parenting Family

How to Choose Music for Your Child

A close friend who passed away last fall inspired me with her passion for music, particularly in the lives of her children. She believed in the power of music to transform the soul, mind, and body. If the proof is in the pudding, she and her husband definitely had the right theory as their ten adult children (and 25 grandchildren) are fantastic human beings.

Whole Parenting philosophy incorporates classical music as it ennobles a child’s soul, has positive effects on a child’s neurological development, and disciplines a child’s body by practice and mastery of instruments.

1) Inform yourself.

For starters, check out Nurtured by Love: The Classical Approach to Talent Education, Shinichi Suzuki. Listen to The Profound Effects of Music on Life, Dr. Andrew Pudewah.

2) Listen to great music.

Turn on Minnesota Public Radio, 99.5 FM. Tune in to the local concert calendars for classical music. Take your little ones early and often to performances. Our favorite children’s albums are Cake for Dinner Children’s Album and Burl Ives Sings a Little White Duck. Cake for Dinner in particular is SuperBoy’s favorite. He also gives it to all his little friends as birthday gifts. Hopefully they will tour in the Twin Cities soon–see this link at the Kennedy Center for their performance there.

3) Pick a song for your infant.

The close friend who passed away shared that she had selected a particular classical music piece for each of her children while pregnant. She would play that piece over and over again from pregnancy through childhood for that child. We selected Pablo Casals performing Bach’s Cello Suites in G, the Prelude and played it all the time throughout my pregnancy. Now SuperBoy responds to it differently than other music. The richness of Casals’ tone is unparalleled. The reverberations are stunning!


  1. Jess Pac on May 12, 2011 at 8:52 am

    I LOVED growing up with the Suzuki method for piano. Now that I have a little son, my plan is to purchase the CD’s for him to listen to before bed. The songs were so deep in my mind that playing the piano came very naturally, as before I even sat down to play, I knew the notes and the songs. Great post.

    • Novice Natural Mama on May 12, 2011 at 9:58 am

      It’s fabulous that you can pass that along to the next musical generation. I started cello as an adult with the Suzuki method and even though my brain is far less supple than a little one’s, there’s something so profound about how those songs just roll right off your fingers once you’ve listened extensively.

  2. Elizabeth Peek Arendale on May 20, 2011 at 5:37 pm

    I know of whom you speak- her son passed me your blog address- so far I am thankful for his “heads up” 🙂

    • Novice Natural Mama on May 22, 2011 at 7:44 am

      I’m so glad you’re here! Thanks for joining in the community and sharing your thoughts and wisdom.

  3. Elizabeth Jones on June 23, 2011 at 11:18 am

    While C loves classical music and the droning voices of NPR news, he also loves baby music, some of which is HORRENDOUS to this mama. Makes me feel like I’m at the funny farm or something. However, I have discovered Rockabye Baby! music. They have virtually every artist you can think of and have made the music baby friendly. They’re on itunes, but you can also find them on http://www.rockabyebabymusic.com.

    C’s favorites? Coldplay and the Beatles. They work amazingly well to sooth Mr. Fussypants when he’s in a mood.

    • Novice Natural Mama on June 23, 2011 at 1:43 pm

      Rockabyebabymusic is such an interesting concept! Baby music/kid’s music in general is totally terrible to me too (Cake for Dinner aside, naturally). Great discovery and thanks for sharing! Music is such a powerful medium for babies–not only in calming them down, but even in affecting the way their neurons develop!

  4. […] listens to classical music primarily. Why? I wrote about it here, but to reiterate […]

  5. […] music and the tremendous affect it has on your child’s neurological structure, here, and here. For J, we selected Bach’s Unaccompanied Cello Suites in G, the Prelude played by Pablo […]

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