This summer, a video circulated throughout the YouTube world that really brought tears to the eyes. It featured Elisha Mysin, a 6-year-old Russian pianist and composer.
If you haven't seen it, here is Elisha's performance.
Sometimes we hesitate to post images and videos of early prodigies because parents can feel bad when they see children performing like this, with early expressions of genius.
Here are four things to remember when watching videos like this.
1. Every child has genius. How do they develop it? Through play & exposure to the world around them--music, languages, concepts and images.
2. Every child progresses at their own pace. Please try not to compare your child to others. There's no such thing as fast or slow. Early or late. It's their pace. It's their timeline.
3. CHILDHOOD SHOULD BE FULL OF PLAY. When we lived in a small gated community, the children and I used to walk to the pool in the evening. Every night we passed by an open window where a young girl was practicing piano nonstop. Her mother was constantly critiquing her and shouting at her to repeat a sequence here or there or to try it again, only faster. Sometimes we'd see this family in the street, the girl's face was downcast. They always seemed to be rushing somewhere. My heart hurt for her. Consider this: If this child was coached and pushed and had no childhood in order to perform this way, then what is the ultimate purpose of this training? Beethoven had such a childhood, but was he happy? What would he have composed if he were not so tortured? How will that type of early discipline help create a balanced life, or even an ultimately happy one?
4. On the other hand, if you see something that your child LOVES, and wants to do over and over and over again, DIVE IN! Do as Maria Montessori bade us to do and "Follow the child." Get access to a piano. Find a way to get lessons. Listen to as many types of music as you can. Play YouTube videos of others playing the piano. Jump into the bliss of the passion and allow your child to outpicture his/her own genius naturally, without pressure or stress, but with JOY and love.
The purpose of TweedleWink, or any early learning program is to help children discover their own inner talents. To have a full potential of intellect, creativity, purpose and joy! To have a beautifully rich life.
So, listen. Enjoy.
Bless this dear child.
And let the music inspire you to give your child your very best--in the most balanced, wholesome, loving way.