Thursday, October 13, 2011

So You Want to Lead Music: Part 3

Variety of Methods in Teaching
Be creative in the ways you teach a song. Sing it slow. Sing it fast. You can even sing it in different accents, just for fun! (Try singing it with an English accent, then put a cowboy hat on and do a Southern accent!) Have a contest with one side of the room versus the other side of the room, to see who knows the hand motions and words the best. You might consider using a song to encourage the children to move on to a new activity. For instance, a particular “clean-up” song makes the task more fun rather than a chore. They are challenged to complete their task before the song ends.

Don’t Give Up On the Quiet Child
Don’t worry about the child who won’t participate or sing. Often the quiet child may still be absorbing everything you are singing or saying, and sometimes the worst thing you can do is draw attention to them. Don’t take their lack of participation as disinterest. Simply smile at them and reinforce their presence.

Realize that Affirmation is Key
We all respond to encouragement. When the children are really singing out, let them know they’re doing a great job. For instance, when they are worshiping you might want to say, “I know that God is blessed by your pretty and worshipful voices!”

Minister Beyond the Classroom
Have the children perform the songs for their parents—not only will teachers and families enjoy it, but the children’s confidence will get an extra boost as well. Allow the children to share their talents in different settings such as at a local senior facility where they will be very much appreciated. You can even create your own special program by choosing songs with a theme and integrating Scripture. If you are using a split-track CD or cassette tape, set the balance so the children’s voices will be featured.

Be Confident and Enthusiastic
Never apologize for what you don’t know, but instead try to approach each lesson with confidence. Whenever possible, speak the children you are teaching at their level, bending down or kneeling if necessary. And remember, whatever you feel you might lack in musical ability, you can often make up for in enthsusiasm.

Remember, whether you are gifted musically or whether you think the only thing you play well is a CD player, even YOU can foster growth through music. There are so many teachable moments that allow God to work beyond what we ever can imagine, Singing together can not only build a child’s self esteem but can be the best way to connect our children in a time of worship and praise, Plus, we all know the great environment music can bring to any classroom. How can you not have fun singing? After all, “ the joy of the Lord is our strength.” So most of all remember the gift that God gave us through music and don’t forget to have fun!

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