By Jennifer King
Two of my four children really struggle when it comes to traditional learning. They cannot sit still for long; bouncing about, humming, spinning, upside down even – There are lots of challenges that come with my decision to home school these crazy kids of mine. However, no matter how different they are wired, they are still created in God’s image. Rather than trying to force them into my way, I seek out methods and tools we can use to assist them in their own way –Soundsory from Sound for Life, is a program that is designed to help students (and adults too) with these sort of challenges. Needless to say, I was pretty excited to have the chance to try this out with mine! This is a forty-day program meant to develop and enhance the body and brain, which is an area I have really been recently digging into more myself so I can understand and assist all four of my children in their awareness overall.
Each day my daughter would use this as she read a book, or did some drawing or painting. I loved watching her dance along a bit to the music. It is recommended that this is used when the child is relaxed and calm so it can be a great addition to quiet time each day. Each day is broken up into two parts – the first involves 25 minutes of listening and then five minutes in which music and body movements are paired together using videos on the website. Some of the exercises I really had to coax her into because she wanted to do her own thing; for 25 minutes as she listened she would whistle and sway about. There would be little jumps and twirls at times. I had to remind her that she can do hers but she also needs to do the ones on the website (there are only four of them). These are so simple to do!
As it turns out rhythm, balance, and movement coordination all have a great impact on our fine-motor and academic skills, translating to a variety of cognitive and motor skills. Wow! There is so much I have been learning since we obtained these headphones. What I thought was just a simple tool to assist in integration and regulation for my children is turning out to be so much more! I love it when I come across something like this that can really open up my understanding to the body/brain connection. Especially for my oldest son (he just turned fourteen), I think it helps him, making him more willing to use this when he can gain a bit more understanding of it for himself. It isn’t just something he has to do but something that he wants to do because he can see how it benefits him in the long run. Overall, there are several things I like about this product and I’m excited to keep using it and tweak it to try to get even better results.
What I do know is that there does seem to be a calm and focus that comes over my daughter (especially) as she listens each day. It is so fun watching her paint and draw, read and book or play with her dolls dressing them and designing new things. For myself, I have always known that music assists (me personally anyway) in whatever task I am at, especially when it might be troublesome or a bit challenging. There are times I think we all need a bit of help exercising our ability to concentrate and focus. This really does seem to be a wonderful way to do that. It is fun and interactive, engaging, in a sense. There is no limit to how old you must be in order to get something out of it either. Even my four-year-old daughter would ask to do her “music and move”.
There are so many distractions our kids have to face each day with technology and the constant busyness we all seem to struggle to beat down (or master). I do believe it is a much-needed skill for us to help our children exercise – that of focus and attention – for them to be able to stop and see. To hear and respond. IN so many instances these are skills that are desperately needed to be had. We are surely going to be using and enjoying this one for some time!
Read Jennifer’s full review, here!