I was recently reminded of the fact that my two year old is always listening.
Now, when I say “listening,” I don’t mean “following directions.” I mean she hears what I say. She is soaking everything in, even if she doesn’t act like she’s listening.
My daughter, Mary Mae, sometimes comes with me to my Monday Joyful Melodies groups. We have the 10:15am Intergenerational Music Class, and then the 12:30pm Toddler Music Jam. In the Intergenerational Music Class, we sang “The Bear Went Over the Mountain.” I introduced some simple motions to go along with the song, and we sang it a few times together. During class, Mary Mae sat quietly and did some of the motions with me, but didn’t sing along.
Later that day, as we were cleaning up from the Toddler Music Jam, I heard Mary Mae singing something quietly. She had her hand up to her forehead. When I leaned in to hear what she was singing, I heard, “And all that he could see…and all that he could see was the other side of the mountain.” She knew all the lyrics and motions, even though she hadn’t sung along or done all the motions in class.
When I start new class sessions I often have the parents recite a pledge. It goes like this:
I, (name), promise never to be embarrassed by the behavior of my child, and promise never to judge other parents based on the behavior of their child.
Children might appear not to be paying attention in music classes. They might run around, sit still and refuse to participate, or do the opposite of the leader’s instructions. But later that day, or weeks later, you might find them singing the songs you thought they were ignoring. Kids are always listening!
Have your kids ever surprised you by repeating something they heard? What was it? Share in the comments!