“Teaching anything to the child in your womb,” is it possible?
Yes, this is definitely possible. The womb is the first environment your child is exposed to. Whatever you share in that environment is what your child will learn.
Here is what you should know if you are pregnant. Your guide to prenatal music.
Inside the womb, the neural system of your baby, begins to develop in the third month of pregnancy. The most responsive stimuli to early neural system is vibration. Vibrations are best brought out by music. This simply tells that music is the first stimuli that your baby can understand, feel and respond to.
Bingo! Now that you know what helps your baby the most in its early months of prenatal formation, you would want to expose your child to music as soon as possible. As you read along, you will find the method that helps your child learn music, right from the time she is in your womb.
How to begin with prenatal music?
The third month is a perfect time to start introducing your favorite music. If you are reading this article much later in your pregnancy, don’t be disappointed. It is never too late, begin this process right away.
Start with your favorite songs – Youtube comes with almost unlimited playlists. You can begin with nursery rhymes, classical numbers, folk songs or music of any type. It has to be the stuff that you enjoy. It could also be melody exercises from western classical, Carnatic or Hindustani music styles. If any music sounds cacophony, avoid such music during pregnancy.
List 12 songs to begin with – This is a ‘one-month’ program.
- Divide each day into three-time slots.
- Play three songs for the first week. Pick one song that helps you revive and makes you happy during a given period in the day. Something for morning, evening and bedtime. Repeat these songs for one week.
- If any of these songs are your favorite and you want to listen to it every day, then retain that song for the next week’s schedule.
Introduce other songs in the rest of the slots.
Sing or listen – If you have been told that you don’t sing well, this is the time you turn towards some positive audience. Your child does not care about your voice.
When you sing as a mother, the music in the form of vibrations reverberates all through the bones in your body and also through your baby.
Hence, singing is always the best option.
However, during those days when you are tired, listening is best. Hence, create a playlist that you want to reach out to all through your pregnancy. Listen to it at times when you enjoy it.
The third option that is not mentioned here is, playing your instrument. If your partner or yourself have known how to play an instrument, then please pick it up and play it now. If needed, enroll to a class that will revive your talent.
Song recognition – Now, that you have comforted yourself with a choice of music, either through – listening, singing or playing an instrument, the next level is recognizing songs. This is an exercise that involves randomness.
Step 1 – Pick a random song and try to recognize any of the following – singer/ composer/ instruments played/ notes/ melody/ rhythm.
Step 2 – Pick another piece of music, preferably by the same singer or composer. Listen to it and try to identify instruments played/ notes/ melody/ rhythm.
Step 3 – Repeat this until you start recognizing different musical patterns. You can pick one song per day. If you have more time to run this exercise, do it with as many songs as possible.
Introducing Melody and Rhythm
Yes, nuances of melody and rhythm can be introduced to your child in the womb.
If you are listening to western classical music, listen to chords and the notes that complement them carefully. Similarly, listen to scales and relevant notes. Here is a list of chords and scales you can expose yourself to.
Each chord and scale will have a set of notes defining the character of the respective chord or scale. By listening to each note and grasping it, you will be introducing your child to the concept called ‘perfect pitch’. Talk to your child while you are exercising this.
If you are introducing Indian Carnatic Music, start listening to raaga, very similar to scale in western music. Each raaga is set around few swaras and songs are composed to fit the grammar of that raaga. One application that really helps you here is Carnatic Raga by Sivakumar Loganathan. There are hundreds of raagas available here with a complete set of exercises. You can download it here.
Adding a soothing song or lullaby that you can sing after such exercises would really help the baby to connect with yourself and the music.
When you start feeling the movements of the baby – that is when you know your baby is ready to learn rhythm. When your baby moves, respond with a tap on your tummy.
When your baby is super active after the 6th month, choose the most active period in a day. This is typically either after you wake up, or after a meal or before you go to bed when you calm yourself.
Tap rhythmically twice, then thrice and then increase the count. You will be surprised to hear back from your kid one day. This is still while the baby is in the womb.
Try these steps and let us know your experience about prenatal music. If you have any questions, comment with your queries.