Want to get along better with the kids – or grandkids? Turn up the music

Most of us have memories – good and bad – of Mum and Dad turning up the radio on family car trips. 

Now a new US study has found kids who share musical experiences with their parents – and grandparents – during childhood and especially their teenage years – report they are closer later on. 

They surveyed a group of participants – average age 21 – on childhood experiences of activities such as listening to music, going to concerts or playing musical instruments together – and how their relationships with their parents was now.  

The more music shared between parents and kids, the better they rated the relationship when they were older. 

Why? The power of music 

They put this down to two things: doing coordinated activities such as singing or dancing seems to make people like each other more (we always thought it was the alcohol that went along with this). 

Sharing musical experiences also encourages people to be more empathetic towards each other (if you’ve got teenagers, you’ll know how hard that can be to come by sometimes). 

These experiences don’t need to be complicated either – even just turning up the radio can apparently have an effect so there’s no need to pack the kids in the car Partridge Family-style. 

Of course, it’s not the prescription for the perfect relationship – but if you want to stay connected with your kids, it could be one way to do it. 

SingStar anyone? 

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A special thanks to our contributors

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Antonia Norris

Researcher and Contributor

Antonia has led the operations and growth of the agedcare101.com.au and villages.com.au within the DCM Group in Australia and New Zealand for several years. This has included the research and creation agedcare101 in 2016, the creation of the DCM Institute and Te Ara Institute, the joint contribution of Care & Living with Mercer (CaLM) and the TV series, The Best 30 Years, screened on NINE nationally.

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Journalist

Journalist

Caroline has a wealth of experience writing within the retirement and aged care sector and is a contributing journalist for the Villages.com.au and agedcare101 blog and accompanying newsletters.

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Ian Horswill

Journalist

Ian is a journalist, writer and sub-editor for the aged care sector, working at The DCM Group. He writes for The Weekly Source, agedcare101, villages.com.au and the DCM Institute fortnightly newsletter Friday. Ian is in daily contact with CEOs of retirement living, land lease and the aged care operations and makes a new contact every week. He investigates media releases, LinkedIn and Facebook for a good source for ideas for stories.

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Lauren Broomham

Retirement and Aged Care Journalist

Lauren is a journalist for villages.com.au, agedcare101 and The Donaldson Sisters. Growing up in a big family in small town communities, she has always had a love for the written word, joining her local library at the age of six months. With over eight years' experience in writing and editing, she is a keen follower of news and current affairs with a nose for a good story.

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Jill Donaldson

Physiotherapist

Jill has been practicing as a clinical physiotherapist for 30 years. For the last 13 years she has worked solely in the Aged Care sector in more than 50 metropolitan and regional facilities. Jill has also toured care facilities in the US and Africa and is a passionate advocate for both the residents in aged care and the staff who care for them. She researches and writes for DCM Media.

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Chris Baynes

DCM Media, agedcare101

Chris has been a journalist and publisher in the retirement village and aged care sectors for 11 years. He has visited over 250 retirement villages and 50 aged care facilities both within Australia and internationally. Chris is a regular speaker at industry conferences plus is a frequent radio commentator.

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Annie Donaldson

Nurse and Carer

Annie has a long career in both nursing and the media. She has planned and co-ordinated the medical support from both international TV productions and major stadium events. In recent years she has been a primary family carer plus involved in structured carer support.