- Gather your materials. You will need a red, a black( scrap would be great to use) and a white piece of paper. A black marker, kid and adult scissors, and glue.
- Start by writing a large uppercase P on the red paper. * you could have kids color the P if you choose, I was not adding extra steps today knowing showing off for beloved grandparents would take precedent over “art time”.
- Next cut a strip of white paper to fit along the P
- Draw lines along it for keys, if your child is able to have them do this even if the lines aren’t straight or well spaced. My son held onto my hand as I was doing the lines, to “help” but wasn’t interested in going solo yet.
- Next cut off a strip of black paper and hand your child their scissors. Have them cut off small black rectangles for the black keys. This took us a long time, My son was able to cut 4 with help without getting frustrated. Scissor skills are hard( as is taking pictures of a 2 year old with scissors), so this is an opportunity to learn and practice . As soon as it starts frustrating them , either put it down and come back to it or ask if you can help.
- Add glue to the white keys, don’t fret about extra glue it can be wiped and will dry.
- Add your black keys.
- He returned for more glue, this time glue the keys down to the P. Let dry.
- Cut out and glue to a black piece of paper.
“Music Over Manhattan” by Mark Karlins was longer than I expected but when I read it to my very overtired , no nap today 2 year old he happily listened and pointed out the instruments, and sky scrappers. The story is about a little boy who is overshadowed by his high achieving and nauseating cousin. A musician uncle plants the love of music in him and he strives to become as good as his uncle who floats in the air when he plays. Something I loved about this book was that the little boy works very hard, he practices all the time and slowly gets better. He had talent to start with but still had to work hard to achieve his goal. A great lesson for all children.
“Before John Was a Jazz Giant: A Song of John Coltrane” by Carol Boston Weatherford is a fascinating book for my son who discovered “Johnny Coltrane” on YouTube while asking me about saxophones a year ago. What I like about this book is that it allows young children to relate to someone so inaccessible, and untouchable like John Coltrane. My son immediately grabbed onto the idea that is explained in the book that all the sounds and music Coltrane heard as a child turned into music he played later on. Later that day we got into a deep and very long winded “Is that music Mama?” conversation and I wasn’t always sure what to say. I wasn’t expecting to get stumped by his questions so soon. Either way when a book sparks questions like that it’s a keeper!