Composers and composing: easier than you think!

Helping children learn to write a song is simple. We don’t expect the vast majority of childre to write like Shakespeare or Milton when they start writing their first sentences. Neither would we expect one to quit trying to compose music just becuase their song doesn’t sound like one of Mozart’s concertos. We are simply trying to teach the process.

Today I had an idea for a song for the letter Z. I sat down and jotted down some words to what I named “Zazzaloopseedoo.”

Then my daughter Rebecca walked in the door. I invited her to write a tune to the lyrics. I handed her a set of resonator bells, and she got a pencil and paper. A few minutes later, she had a little tune written down in Solfa notation (just the first letter of each note).

Rebecca composing

Rebecca composingNow, my daughter and I aren’t Rogers and Hammerstein, but we had fun in the creative process. And this process is the building block from which nearly all children can learn to write a song. How we continue to develop that skill can help those who discover that they feel very excited about the process to want to continue. Not everyone has to become a music composer! But teaching and learning the simple process of writing a tune can allow every child to experience the joy of creating.