Toys Are Tools

At their best toys are much more than entertainment. They foster and encourage imaginative play, nurture speech and lay the groundwork for a lifetime of creative problem solving and success.

Toy Are Tools is a web-site featuring the best educational toys on the market. While music is not a “toy” per-SE, it nurtures communication between the left and right hemispheres of the brain and stimulates pattern recognition. Beyond that–and perhaps more fundamentally–music is healing.

A recent Parents With Angst review on the Toys Are Tools web-site focused on the healing power of music.

The following is excerpted from the article:

“Once I was stuck in traffic coming home from yet another seminar about education.  After leaving, I couldn’t wait to get home, catch my breath, and get back to work.  But I got stuck in some bad traffic- really, really, really bad traffic.

I was moving so slow, there was construction everywhere, the roads were narrowed and the sun was just beating down on me but it was the middle of winter and so I had a thick coat on.  I wanted to open the window but it was so loud.  I wished I could call a friend but my cellphone battery was dead.   #$%@!!!

I became so frustrated that I was soon talking to myself and then the mumbling turned into growling and then into “filth florin’ filth” as Bill Cosby used to say.  I was in total rage and I couldn’t even get off the highway to scream.  If I had something alcoholic to drink, I probably would have taken a shot right there.  Even though I live in a very busy city, I am not used to traffic.  Driving is husband duty … like taking out the trash- I just dislike it a lot so I avoid it as much as possible.  When he drives, I sit in the passenger seat and check my email, read, or skim through catalogs so if we have traffic, I actually become very productive.

But that day, I was stuck in a cauldron of my own anger.  I didn’t know what to do but to turn on some music.  I don’t really listen to music.  I have too much in my head and I can’t focus and so music has been out of my life for a long time but that day I turned it on really loud and attempted to perform an exorcism by singing at the top of my lungs.

It worked!

By the time I came home, I had gone from fire-breathing status to just blowing out small puffs of smoke from my nostrils.  I was amazed that music was the vodka that I needed during my crisis.  I never forgot that.

It’s my suspicion that many parents stop doing a couple of things when they become parents.  One is the practice of leisurely reading the Sunday newspaper and the other is listening to music.   Not keeping up with the times leaves us isolated and I’m realizing that not listening to music is another huge loss.”

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Share your stories about the healing power of music with us on facebook and twitter. Until next time, here’s to the importance of the arts in our children’s lives (and ours)! xo Amelia