October 1 is International Music Day, a day to appreciate the way that music can bring people together. At Signing Time, we know this well. We use a lot of music to teach signing because we know it works. And any of us can appreciate music and its power to communicate, even if we aren’t musical ourselves. So to celebrate this International Music Day, let’s think of a few ways to take some time to appreciate what music can do for all of us.
Where did this come from?
In 1975, the International Music Council succeeded in making October 1 the International Music Day. This group believed that music could be a tool in bringing peace and unity to our world. Since music can bridge cultures and speak to people anywhere, they pushed the ideal that communities could unite and set aside differences with the help of music.
The council’s president, Lord Yehudi Menuhin, laid out the following reasons for making International Music Day.
Encourage promoting musical art among all the sections of society
Motivate the application of UNESCO’s ideals of peace and friendship among people
Create space for the evolution of cultures through the exchange of experiences
Encourage mutual appreciation of cultures, especially their aesthetic values
So these are ideals behind the International Music Day, and these are the ideals we can keep in mind as we celebrate International Music Day. Today, over 150 countries participate in the International Music Day.
How we can participate
Music is a huge part of our human culture, so it’s likely you have some appreciation for music in your life. With young children, we often have lots of music to choose from, some that we parents enjoy, and some that we do not enjoy.
Expose your kids to a variety of music
Even though our kids have their “kid music”, we can expose them to other music. Maybe find an Italian album to play in the background during dinner, or play some eclectic world music as you’re preparing dinner.
Learn the sign for “music”
Declare a moment of silence
Another suggestion for appreciating music is to have complete silence. Some countries even order traffic to be stopped for a minute on International Music Day. The idea is to get rid of the noise so that we can take a moment to just listen. We can listen to the sounds of nature or the sounds of the activity around us, depending on where we are. But taking time to listen in silence helps us to learn to listen, to notice. It helps us to hear the music made by nature, which can be quite spectacular.
Have a concert
If you are a musical family, take some time to play or sing together. Maybe even invite some friends and make it an event.
If you are not a musical family, your kids would still love to have some kind of concert. Maybe they have some toy instruments, or maybe they could bang on a pot and blow into the opening of a bottle.
Enjoy some music from Signing Time
Our shows at My Signing Time are full of music, but did you know that we have music on Spotify? So let your kids enjoy some educational music at My Signing Time, and play their favorite Signing Time songs from our Spotify list.
What will you do for International Music Day?