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Music in Parent-Infant Relationships

Georgina Roberts

Hi, I’m Georgina and I’m one of the Note Weavers directors. I’m a music therapist and an early years music practitioner. I’ve worked for a long time in SEN/D settings, but just recently I’ve completed an MSc in Child and Adolescent Mental Health and Well-being at Edge Hill University. I’d enrolled on the course because I’d started working on a well-being project with young people, and I wanted to update my knowledge. This blog is about my musings over how music connects with parent-infant relationships and parent and infant mental health and well-being.

I’ve always had an interest in parent-infant relationships and how musical activity can support families in the first few years. I found the psychology module on my MSc that looked at child development fascinating. It made sense to me that supporting families during the critical 1001 days 1001 Days – Parent-Infant Foundation (parentinfantfoundation.org.uk) could help parents and their infants develop strong, loving and responsive relationships. Working in a preventive way to support both parental and infant mental health and well-being.

I wanted to know more about parent-infant relationships and parent-infant mental health, so I contacted my local Home-Start Charity Home – Home-Start Trafford Salford and Wigan (hsts.org.uk). I’ve been a volunteer with the charity since 2019. The charity supports families who are struggling for many reasons. I offer practical and emotional support to families; often listening to and empathising with parents and playing with the children.

As a result of my volunteering and newfound knowledge from my MSc, Note Weavers is working on an Awards for All funded project with Home-Start. I am developing an e-learning module to share ideas with other volunteers about using music with families to support play and engagement. 

The research study for my MSc explored service providers (music leaders, charity volunteers and charity parent-infant mental health support coordinators) views on the effectiveness of music for supporting parent-infant relationships. Without giving too much away, I found out that there needed to be a discussion around what music means in the context of parent-infant relationships. Secondly, I discovered that the terminology surrounding parent-infant relationships can be confusing and difficult to understand. Finally, I learnt about musical and non-musical approaches that practitioners considered useful for supporting the parent-infant relationship.

If you want to find out more about my research, please come along to the Note Weavers CPD session. Book here Exploring Music and the Parent-Infant Relationship Tickets, Tue 1 Nov 2022 at 19:00 If you work in the North West please contact Note Weavers for a promo code to access the event for free (hello@noteweavers.org).

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