Lily is a singer. She makes anything and everything into a song. She has held conversations with me through song (I was talking and not singing), placed an order with me for dinner and read literature books through song. With that, you would think that she didn’t need any assistance or direction with learning how to sing. Well, she has got the desire and the motivation, but has never had any professional training. Good training is so much of what makes a good singer great.
So you wanna sing? Well, Chris and Carole Beatty may be the ones who can take you from the shower and onto the stage, even if all you want to do is sing on your living room floor. The Beattys have created a singing product called Vocal Coach, which is the result of more than 40 years of experience coaching and teaching people to sing.
Through Vocal Coach, they offer a variety of products that can help a student of any age learn the necessary skills for singing. The Beattys offer private training online in their Brentwood, Tennessee studio. They also have a complete section on their website devoted to homeschoolers and teaching singing in the home.
We had the opportunity to review Teaching Kids to Sing, which is a three-disc DVD/CD set that is geared towards children ages five through 13. The three CDs are 1) Building Foundations that Last (DVD; 2) Essential Skills for Growing Voices (DVD; and 3) Accompaniment Tracks (CD).
Teaching Kids to Sing focuses more on skills of singing and voice usage rather than how to sing different music styles. The Beattys do teach students how to sing in different styles through their Ultimate Choir Warm-Up 1 and Ultimate Choir Warm-Up 2, which at the time of this review are on sale.
The skills that are taught in Teaching Kids to Sing are posture, breathing, tone, warm-ups, rhythm, diction, dynamics and vocal health. The Beattys perform the lessons with the help of the Vocal Coach Kids Choir, which are a group of children who are the varied ages of the students targeted for this program. It is nice that the Beattys have students demonstrating as they teach the skills.
OUR EXPERIENCE: I had Lily, River and Canyon watch the first DVD, which covered posture through warm-ups. They enjoyed seeing children around their ages going through the exercises. It kept them engaged enough to sit through the entire length of the DVD, which is a little over 40 minutes. They were able to see other children doing some of the same exercises and demonstrating some of the same issues that they might experience when singing.
An example of that is with posture. Correct posture is an important skill/ability in more than just singing, but I think that seeing the difference in performance with good and poor posture was important to them. I had them also practice their posture while sitting at the table while they ate. Consistent practice with good posture pays off in the long run not only with singing, but in our abilities as we get older. However you train your body that is what it will learn.
The next day, we watched the second DVD all the way through. A lot of what was covered on the DVD were skills they have already learned as members in their choir at church. I think that may be why they did not really prefer to watch the segments on a more regular basis.
Some of the comments were that they liked having a physical music teacher who could really work with them and give them guidance. I also think the lessons were a little bit elementary for River and Lily only because they have had a lot of the training that is included on the DVDs from their choir teacher at church.
So that they could benefit from the DVDs, I decided to change up how we used them. I had them do the warm-ups and breathing exercises and then spent time learning the songs on the CD. Since they like singing, this was more fun for them and they were able to get something out of the program. They went over three warm-ups and practiced the songs after that. We spent about 30 minutes/three days a week.
Although I like the idea of vocal lessons at home, my children didn’t take to the DVD lessons as well as I would have preferred. Despite that, if you have young students, who have a desire to sing, then Teaching Kids to Sing is a good product that can start them on their way. The program does a good job on presenting the basics and the warm-ups and breathing exercises can be used by both singers and students who do speech presentation.
Teaching Kids to Sing is available for $44.99.
|Disclaimer: The product featured in this review was provided to me in exchange for an honest review by the manufacturer or representing PR agency as a member of the TOS Homeschool Crew. The opinions expressed are my own.|