How I (Really) Raise My Kids

Becoming a parent 18 years ago caught me unawares and unprepared (but that’s another blog post), and so I always question my skills as a mom. Everything I know came from observation (my parents) and trial-and-error (me). However, I always want to be better in what I do and so I have become an avid reader of ANY and ALL parental advice articles. The most recent ones I came across included something about how American parents are doing it wrong (poor American parents–they always have it bad) and one about how to listen to your teen-age child.

Although reading these articles do instruct me on how to become a better mother, many times I feel quite inadequate when I can’t practice everything they preach. “5 Keys to Raising Smart Kids,” “10 Steps to Giving your Child More Confidence,” “8 Best Kid-Healthy Tips,” “12 Mistakes You Should Never Make When Your Kids Start a Sport.” Really now, aren’t those titles a little too intimidating?

I have, therefore, learned to accept my own strengths and weaknesses as a mom, and have developed my own strategies in bringing up my kids to become the adults I want them to be.

Here are my own parenting practices in no particular order of preference or prominence (Whew!  That was a lot of Ps!):

  • I feed the kids as much healthy food as they can swallow. In my case, that would be two strands of kangkong, followed by a full glass of water, and a banana for dessert. When they eat chips or drink soda, I just close my eyes and pretend it’s not happening. I also try to be a good example by eating vegetables in front of them (I should stop with the brownies though).
  • I ALWAYS remind them speak to and treat people–any people–with the utmost respect. (“Any people” includes their own siblings.) They have to greet elder people–mom, dad, lolo, lola, tito, tita, teacher, priest, doctor, yaya, driver, etc–every time they enter a room. This is a non-negotiable, and non-compliance usually means a slap in the face (I’m kidding Bantay Bata!).
  • Using of the computer, iPad, iTouch, iPhone, X-box during school days is not allowed. But truthfully, I pick my battles. How can you win against a child telling you, “But I neeeeeeeeeed the computer to do research for my homework,” OR “I have to keep my iPhone on!  That’s how my classmates get in touch with me so we can do our project together”??? Sometimes, I do feel my head explode.
  • Team sports is a must! (Physical health, cooperation, and perseverance–what more can you ask?) We attend all the games to cheer for them, shout out things they should do to their opponent, groan out loud when they lose the ball, and hug them whether they win or lose.
  • I train my kids to study independently (fact: my husband has forbidden me from tutoring my own kids lest I “accidentally” strangle them), yet when they need help I am there for them. I sharpen their pencils, help them with the printer, or buy art supplies. But I will NEVER: write a paper, answer math problems, draw the digestive system, or research the gross domestic products of the Central Asian countries. Oh, I also tell them everyday when they arrive home from school: “Do your homework. Study na!”
  • I teach my kids to live within their allowance. If they want a new shirt, bag, toy, musical instrument, or iPad game, they have to either save their money, work for it, or wait until their birthday comes around (because that is the only occasion we allow them to go to their grandparents to ask for anything). And if they’re hungry because they don’t have enough money to buy food, I just tell them to eat less (again, I’m kidding Bantay Bata!).
  • I allow them to experience new things without us. Sometimes, the first soiree, camping trip, or non-animated movie is best enjoyed with their barkada.
  • Their friends are always welcome to come over to the house, but they have to make sure that they greet us when they arrive. That is our kids’ most important responsibility when they host. And we expect that they do the same when they visit their friends’ houses.
  • I constantly ask them what went about in their day, and encourage them to tell stories about their friends. And I always (try to) listen without judgement and laugh with abandon.
  • I hug and kiss my kids as much as they allow me to–when they wake up, before they leave the house, when they arrive at home, after taking a shower (to check how clean they are), and before they go to bed. Sometimes, I also try to do this in public but I’m usually met with some a lot of resistance.

In the end, whatever it is I do, I just hope and pray that they grow-up to be good and happy people.  That’s all a mother (like me) could ask.

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When Kids Don’t Listen (A Very Simple Guide to APD)

Browsing through the kidshealth.org website, I noticed an article about APD (Auditory Processing Disorder), also known as Central Auditory Processing Disorder (CAPD).  It defines the condition as:

“a complex problem affecting about 5% of school-aged children.  These kids can’t process the information they hear in the same way as others because their ears and brain don’t fully coordinate.  Something adversely affects the way the brain recognizes and interprets sounds, most notably the sounds composing speech.

Kids with APD often do not recognize subtle differences between sounds in words, even when the sounds are loud and clear enough to be heard. These kinds of problems usually occur in background noise, which is a natural listening environment. So kids with APD have the basic difficulty of understanding any speech signal presented under less than optimal conditions.”

Many times, APD is not really treated as a serious problem because–let’s get real–children do have a tendency to misunderstand parents and teachers when they don’t feel like listening to things they don’t want to hear.  Case in point, my conversation with my son Basti, regarding the need to brush his teeth every night.

ME:  “Did you brush your teeth?”

BASTI (not looking away from the TV):  “Hmmm?”

ME:  “Did you brush your teeth?  If you haven’t, I will turn off that TV until you do.”

BASTI:  “Mom, I don’t understand what you are saying to me.”

Pilosopong Basti aside, consider the five problem areas (as described in the same website) that affect a child with APD:

1.  Auditory Figure-Ground Problems: when a child can’t pay attention if there’s noise in the background.

Gino belongs to a class of 23 students.   While their teacher is giving them instructions on how to write an expository essay,  Gino’s seatmate is whispering to him about the new iPad game he got last night.  Two boys behind him are chatting about football, and so are the two classmates in front of him.  The air-conditioner in the classroom is making loud, clunky sounds; and younger kids outside are shouting while playing frisbee.  Gino is so overwhelmed by the myriad of noises that he is unable to focus on what his teacher is saying, and just covers his ears.

2.  Auditory Memory Problems: when a child has difficulty remembering information such as directions, lists, or study materials.  

Lauren’s mother is telling her to pack for her class camping trip the next day.   “Lauren, go to my room and get the duffel bag in the closet.  You will find the sleeping bag under your brother’s bed.  Go pack your clothes after.  Don’t forget to bring sun screen, insect repellant, a jacket, cap, flashlight, and your allergy medicines.  Did you get all that?”  Lauren nods and goes to her mother’s room.  She searches around but can’t find what she is looking for.  After ten minutes, she shouts, “Mom where is the sleeping bag?  What do I have to bring again?”

3.  Auditory Discrimination Problems:  when a child has difficulty hearing the difference between words that are similar.

Jaime noticed that she got one mistake in her spelling test.  She approaches her teacher and says, “I spelled this word correctly.”  The teacher shakes her head, “I’m sorry, Jaime, it is wrong.  Color is spelled C-O-L-O-R.”  Jaime looks dismayed, “But I heard you say the word ‘collar.'”  The teacher explains, “I used the word in a sentence–The newborn puppy was color brown.”  Jaime looks confused, “I thought you said–The newborn puppy wore a brown collar.”

4.  Auditory Attention Problems:  when a child can’t stay focused on listening long enough to complete a task or requirement.

Rally’s teacher is explaining how to make a camera obscura.  “First, tape up the box to ensure that no light can penetrate it.  Then cut away part of one end of the box and fix a screen of tracing paper across it. At the opposite end cut a 25mm hole in the box, cover this with kitchen foil, tape down the edges and bore a neat round hole through the foil that is no larger than the lead of a pencil.”  While his teacher is talking, Rally’s attention is caught by the sound of a car passing by.  When he realizes that his teacher has finished talking, Rally looks at his cardboard box and then asks his friend beside him, “What are we suppose to do?”

5.  Auditory Cohesion Problems:  when higher-level listening tasks are difficult, such as drawing inferences from conversations.  

Mateo was being interviewed by a therapist about his family.  He was asked, “Mateo, do you like going to school?”  Mateo answers (with a smile), “Yes, I like school.”  The therapist asks further, “What do you do when you’re in school?”  Mateo says, “I play with my friends and I learn new things.”  The therapist continues, “What is it you most like about school?”  Mateo answers (with a little frown), “I like to go to school.”  The therapist rephrases her question, “What is your most favorite thing about school?”  Mateo says, “My favorite thing is school.”

Tomatis PhilippinesAPD can affect a child’s performance and behavior in school and at home if left unidentified and unmanaged.  And if so, it may lead to more serious concerns such as speech and language delays and academic problems.

Tomatis and APD

The Tomatis Method can help children with APD by retraining the auditory system and decreasing hearing distortion. This allows them to listen and focus on the important sounds and efficiently process the information in the brain, greatly improving a child’s receptive listening skills.

Dr. Deborah Swain, former Chief of Speech Pathology at the University of California, Davis Medical Center and current director of the Swain Center, explains in her study:

The Tomatis Method is based on the evidence that the neurophysiological construction of the auditory system has important connections with entire body as well as the cortex and sub-cortical structures, which are stimulated when stable and normal auditory perception occurs.

The Tomatis Method serves as an auditory stimulation/re-education intervention to stimulate listening and processing as opposed to hearing.  It reproduces the developmental steps of listening, language acquisition and use, and learning.

As a matter of fact, her study entitled  “The Effects of Auditory Stimulation on Auditory Processing Disorder,” describes the positive effect of the Tomatis Method as a form of intervention for APD.

The study’s purpose is to determine the efficacy of the Tomatis Method of auditory stimulation as a therapeutic intervention for Auditory Processing Disorders (APD).  Forty-one subjects (18 females, 23 males; 4.3 to 19.8 years old) were evaluated for APD.  Performance on standardized tests indicated weaknesses with auditory processing skills.  Each subject participated in a 90-hour Tomatis Method protocol and, once completed, each subject was re-evaluated to measure improvement.  All subjects demonstrated improvement with skills of immediate auditory memory, auditory sequencing, interpretation of directions, auditory discrimination, and auditory cohesion.  Pre- and post-treatment comparison indicated statistically significant differences in the aforementioned skills.  These findings suggest that the Tomatis Method of auditory stimulation can be effective as an intervention strategy for APD.

If you would like to find out more about how the Tomatis Method can address Auditory Processing Disorder, please email us: info@tomatis.com.ph.

Brain Gain…with No Pain

Carrie is a Grade 4 student, with an average grade of 85.  Her favourite subject is Civics, and she enjoys Math.  But sometimes in the classroom, Carrie has a little difficulty remembering all the historical dates her teacher tells her, as well as all the Math formulas she has to memorize.

Marco is a Grade 7 student who loves Science and playing football.  All his teachers like him because he is always polite and well-behaved in class.  He does his work diligently but there are moments when he gets distracted doing his school tasks, misses a number or two on the work sheet, and then submits his work incomplete.

Jenny is a Third year student who is involved in the Drama Club.  Tomatis PhilippinesShe recently received a Silver certificate for her grades, and is currently the president of her class.  Once in a while, in the middle of a discussion or meeting, Jenny finds herself misplacing her notes or losing her pens causing her panic and unnecessary fretfulness.

Enzo is a 22-year old college graduate who recently got a job as a bank trainee.  He is required to help customers who have problems or questions about their accounts.  Many times, Enzo finds himself squirming on his seat and stands up constantly to walk around the room.  There have been occasions when his attention was called by his boss because a client was looking for help and Enzo was nowhere to be found.

Carrie, Marco, Jenny, and Enzo are all average and ordinary people who are all doing well in school and at work, but sometimes, they also need a little boost to help them out.  At Tomatis® Philippines, we offer the BRAIN GAIN Standard Program.  It is designed especially for children of school age (5 to 17 years) and adults (18y +++) not diagnosed for any specific attention, learning, or communication disorder but could improve in certain areas to consequently become better listeners and learners.  The Tomatis® Method acts in a natural and non-intrusive manner on the auditory system and the brain.  To learn more how our method works, watch this very interesting video.

The benefits that may result from the program include:

  • increased capacity for absorbing and processing information
  • better concentration when doing tasks
  • increased attention span in the classroom
  • better organization and ability to follow instructions
  • decreased restlessness and hyperactivity
  • increased self-confidence and sense of well-being

The Tomatis® Brain Gain program is 30 hours long.  It needs to be completed in 15 consecutive days (excluding week-ends) or 3 weeks, with the client listening for 2 hours per day.  An initial Assessment and Listening Test are not required.

If you wish to avail of this program or any of our other programs, please call us at 856.7631 or email info@tomatis.com.ph.

To find out more about the Tomatis® Method in the Philippines, you may go to:

Our website: www.tomatis.com.ph.
Our Facebook page: Tomatis Philippines.
Our Twitter account: @TomatisPhil.

We are looking forward to hearing from you very soon.

Tomatis® & Autism

The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke describes Autism spectrum disorder (or ASD) as:

“a range of complex neurodevelopment disorders, characterized by social impairments, communication difficulties, and restricted, repetitive, and stereotyped patterns of behavior.  Autistic disorder, sometimes called autism or classical ASD, is the most severe form of ASD, while other conditions along the spectrum include a milder form known as Asperger syndrome, and childhood disintegrative disorder and pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified (usually referred to as PDD-NOS).  Although ASD varies significantly in character and severity, it occurs in all ethnic and socioeconomic groups and affects every age group.  Experts estimate that 1 out of 88 children age 8 will have an ASD (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, March 30, 2012).  Males are four times more likely to have an ASD than females.”

kids-with-autismAccording to the National Institutes of Health, diagnosing ASD requires an evaluation by a multidisciplinary team, including a psychologist, neurologist, psychiatrist, speech therapist, and other professionals, such as a Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrician.  At present, “scientists aren’t certain about what causes ASD, but it’s likely that both genetics and environment play a role.”  Also, “there is no cure for ASDs.  Therapies and behavioral interventions are designed to remedy specific symptoms and can bring about substantial improvement.

The Tomatis® Method does not lay claim to curing Autism.  However, prime aspects of the listening therapy do help in alleviating many of its symptoms.  Jacqueline Parks, a Yahoo! contributor, explains in her article:

“Most autistic children are hypersensitive to sound. They have trouble shutting anything out, so they just shut down. For this reason, their Tomatis® Listening Therapy usually starts with sound desensitization. Tomatis® listening programs teach the child to use his ears, as opposed to bone conduction, for primary sound recognition and to shut out irrelevant noises. This enables the autistic child to learn through sound. Because speech is primarily learned through sound perception and imitation, this opens a path to speech development. As the autistic child realizes that he can produce sounds, control them, and communicate with them, he develops a better sense of self and is better able to interact with his environment.

“As autistic children complete the various stages of their Tomatis® programs, there will be improvement in areas not directly related to listening or communication. As children become less sensitive to sound, they also often become less sensitive to tactile stimulation and to food textures. They are more likely to make eye contact and to cuddle. Your picky eater may suddenly be more willing to eat different foods. Probably the best benefit of Tomatis® Listening Therapy is an improved relationship with your autistic child. Results vary, but all children show some improvement. (Source: tomatis.com)”

Tomatis® News for 2013

Hello!  After a long hiatus due to the demands of Christmas revelries in the Philippines, The Earobics Teacher will once again be featuring new blogs for the year 2013.

Firstly, I’d like to welcome everyone back and hope that you all had a happy and healthy holiday with your families and loved ones.

Now to share some Tomatis® news:

  • There will be a convention of the International Association of Registered Certified Tomatis® Consultants (IARCTC) this coming April 25-28, 2013 at Camp Sounio, Greece.  athens-grecotel-cape-sounio-75879The bi-annual summit is open to all Tomatis® members, consultants, and practitioners.  Registration is now open.
  • The TDSA (sole owner of the Tomatis® brand) has come out with a new 3-D video to explain how the listening therapy works on the ears.  Watch it here.
  • Taking firm action against those who use the “TOMATIS” name indiscriminately, we are now in the process of revamping our website to include the Tomatis® licensed trademark in all our texts.  Therefore, if one needs accurate information about the method, they are urged to look for the proper Tomatis® licensed trademark, as well as the official logo in all websites. TOMATIS Logo

Hope you all have a wonderful new year ahead!

Why the Right Ear IS the Right Ear

I’m not saying that the Left Ear has no use at all, but it seems that (according to Dr. Tomatis and other researchers) by using your Right Ear, one can better process what they hear and have a more appropriate emotional response.

How is this so?  The right side of our body is connected to the left side of our brain (and vice-versa).  Therefore, when we listen for sounds using our Right Ear, the information swiftly and efficiently travels to the left hemisphere which is responsible for processing our emotions, speech, and language comprehension.  The left side of the brain is also called the auditory processing center and it helps us analyze all the things we hear or listen to.  In his biography, The Conscious Ear, Dr. Tomatis writes:

“We have two ears, but each fulfils a different function.  The chief function of the right ear is to be a ‘director’….In the feedback loop of self-listening, which connects the hearing apparatus to the larynx, the right ear will be closer to the organs of speech than the left….The right ear takes charge of operations because it receives information more rapidly.”

What happens then when one is Left Ear Dominant?  When sound enters through the left ear, the information goes to the right side of the brain.  (The right hemisphere takes visual information and organizes them.)  From the right side of the brain, the sound then has to traverse through the corpus collosum (which connects the two brain hemispheres) and then go to the left side, which is the language center.  The delay of the sound reaching the left brain usually causes auditory confusion (“Huh?”), stuttering (“W- W- W- Where are you going?”), or dyslexia (mistaking the word “color” for “collar”).

Dr. Tomatis discovered the significance of the Right Ear while doing his work with opera singers.  He said,

“This is an absolute: all great singers and musicians are ‘right-eared….the right ear ‘measures’ the highest frequencies, while the left ear performs the job for the lower-pitched frequencies….As a result the left-eared person finds himself distanced by his ear.  Not only is he a long way from the person to whom he is talking to, but he is also a long way from his own body, since he cannot attune himself to the higher frequencies of his own voice.”

Since the connection is less reliable in interpreting language, Dr. Tomatis believed that Left Ear Dominant people had a tendency to miss many of the higher frequencies which causes information to get “lost in translation” and brings in errors and delays.

Being a healer, the good doctor found a way to help the opera singers become Right Ear Dominant.  He created a training apparatus to be used for audio-vocal education and re-education.  This is the same machine we use today (albeit in a more modern embodiment) called the Electronic Ear (see a photo of it here).  Later on, Dr. Tomatis used his machine to work on people who stuttered or were dyslexic, and to his amazement, they got better.  He concluded that by training them to become Right Ear Dominant–by increasing the input of sound using the Electronic Ear (among other things)–his clients not only started to sing better, they also improved their speech and language.  French actor, Gerard Depardieu, was one of his more enthusiastic and successful clients.

If you wish to find out your Ear Dominance and how we can help you, visit us at any of our Tomatis centers today.

The Great Tomatis Christmas Promo…50% off on all our Standard Programs!

As I was walking up and down the aisle of a department store, the unmistakable tune of “Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer” was playing in the background, in frequencies that were quite jarring to the ears.  Despite all that, I felt that the Christmas season was indeed approaching and coming as quickly as Santa’s fleet-footed runners could take him.  Therefore, we (at Tomatis Philippines) decided to offer a great gift idea for your beloved family members and friends.  We are giving away our Tomatis Standard Programs at 50% off for the months of October, November, and December.

Our Standard Programs are 30 hours long and have specific benefits for the listener.  There is no need for an initial Assessment or Listening Test.

The BRAIN GAIN program is for school-aged children (5 – 17 years old) not diagnosed with any neuro-developmental conditions.  It helps them improve their listening skills to become better learners.

Tomatis Gift Card
BRAIN GAIN

The benefits include:

  • Increased capacity for absorbing and processing information.
  • Better focus and concentration when doing tasks.
  • Increased attention span in the classroom.
  • Better organisational skills and ability to follow directions/instructions.
  • Decreased restlessness and hyperactivity.

The NIFTY AFTER FIFTY program helps sharpen the mind and body of adults aged 50 years old and above.

(Younger adults can avail of this too.)

Tomatis Gift Card
NIFTY AFTER FIFTY

The benefits include:

  • Increased energy and vitality.
  • Improved balance.
  • Improved attention, concentration and memory.
  • Better communication skills.
  • Decreased sound sensitivity.
  • Increased sense of well-being.
  • Decreased irritability and stress.

The BELLIES N BABIES program is for women who are in their 6th month (or later) of pregnancy.

Tomatis Gift Card
BELLIES N BABIES

It contributes to an easy delivery, as well as producing alert, calm, and healthy babies.  The benefits include:

  • A tranquil and stress-free pregnancy.
  • An early bond between mother and child.
  • Stimulation for the baby while still inside the womb.
  • An easy and relaxing delivery.
  • Babies are born even-tempered, happy, responsive, and with well-toned bodies.

If you wish to avail of any of these programs or give them as special gifts to your loved ones, call us at 856.7631 or email info@tomatis.com.ph.

To find out more about the Tomatis Method in the Philippines, go to:

We are looking forward to hearing from you very soon.

Parents are Not Perfect People (But That’s Okay)

Let me veer away briefly from all things Tomatis because I’d like to write about a talk I attended last Saturday about “Building Strong Families that Foster Good Character,” delivered by the esteemed psychologist and morals education guru Thomas Lickona, Ph.D.  In a room filled with eager parents, he enumerated 11 principles on how we can educate and train our children (along with Mom and Dad) to live lives of virtue.  The subject-matter was thought-provoking enough, but one topic that caught my attention was when he mentioned the importance of creating a Character-Centered Home versus an Entertainment-Centered Home.

In a Character-Centered home, children are taught wisdom, justice, fortitude, self-control, love, having a positive attitude, hard work, integrity, gratitude, and humility; which we can achieve if we practice the principles of good parenting.

In an Entertainment-Centered home, children are…well, entertained (with endless “fun” activities, parties, trips, toys, video games, electronic devices and television) and not taught much else about surviving the realities of the outside world.  And when the time comes when there is nothing else to entertain them with, the children become: (1) bored and/or (2) unhappy; and end up mostly as selfish, indolent and irresponsible adults.  Yikes!

As a run-of-the-mill, devoted (and frequently flustered) wife and working mother-of-three, I am very concerned whether I indulge my children too much with electronic devices that serve as surrogate parents.  My husband and I have been guilty of using such practices in the past such as rewarding (or bribing?) our teen-age daughter with her own laptop; employing the Xbox to divert our pre-teen son while we have guests in the house; or appeasing our youngest boy with an iPad to prevent a breakdown in a restaurant.  It is, unavoidably and literally, a part of our everyday lives.  Add to this concern are the many studies one can just Google on the internet about the negative effects of using such things to excess–decreased attention span, poor social skills, and obesity!

However, in the end, Dr. Lickona did appease my feelings of inadequacy and said that parents are only human and can make mistakes.  He quoted a wise bishop, “Our children don’t need to see a perfect role model, but only someone who is trying.”  And that made me feel good.

As a run-of-the-mill, devoted (and frequently flustered) wife and working mother-of-three, all I want is for my children to grow up as moral adults.  Sometimes, I will do it Dr. Lickona’s way; and at other times, I will do it my way.  I pray that in the end, all of this will be worth it.

Are you a run-of-the-mill, devoted (and frequently flustered) spouse and working/stay-at-home parent-of-____?  Do share your thoughts and insights about the wonderful world of parenthood.

How Tomatis Helped a Boy Walk Again

I’d like to share an incredible story about “a young boy with a medical diagnosis of cerebellar ataxia who progressed from needing a wheelchair to walking with hand held assistance after Tomatis training was added to a program of occupational and physical therapy.”  This case study was prepared by Maude Le Roux, a Tomatis colleague (and occupational therapist) who owns and runs a pediatric private practice in Glen Mills, Pennsylvania, U.S.A.  Maude has integrated Tomatis into her practice and she considers it their “most effective method to create effective neuro-physical changes with lasting functional results.”

Read all about Paul’s Incredible Journey and please share your thoughts.

Pourquoi Mozart?

In 1991, Alfred Tomatis wrote a book that answered the question “Why Mozart?.”  The good doctor explained (and extolled) in his treatise the reasons why Mozart’s music is superior in its healing effects and why it is used for the Tomatis Method.  (I don’t expect you to read the book, unless you are very fluent in archaic French.)  Through the help of Pierre Sollier–Tomatis devotee and author–and other Tomatis books, we get to learn the rationale for using Mozart’s music.

It should be noted, however, that the content of Pourquoi Mozart? (1991) is not to be confused with the more popular The Mozart Effect (1997), written by author and music researcher Don Campbell.  Campbell espoused the idea that by listening to Mozart, one can become smarter.  For Alfred Tomatis, Mozart’s music was more than a palliative influence on the brain.  Rather, it encompassed the entire person, body and soul.

In my humble capacity as a Tomatis practitioner, I have listed down the reasons why Alfred Tomatis used Mozart’s music:

1.  Mozart began composing as a child, therefore, his music is very reminiscent of an innocent and happy childhood.  It is vibrant, clear and transparent, and deftly expresses joy and sadness in a very heartfelt style.

“Perhaps it is Wolfgang Amadeus’ precocity that provides the answer. He began to compose excellent works at the age of four and a half. He was born into an extremely favourable environment, where music reigned as absolute monarch. Even before his birth, Mozart was saturated with music. I have no doubt that such a situation prepared his nervous system to listen and to live only in music….It is not inappropriate to say that musical expression was the true mother tongue which enabled Mozart to communicate with the entire universe.”  (The Conscious Ear, Tomatis, 1991)

2.  Mozart’s music is pure, balanced and was inspired by the Divine; therefore it is perfect in all its musical elements.  Compared to other composers, music was “imbedded” in Mozart’s soul.

“Why Mozart (and why not Beethoven, Ravel, Bartok, or Louis Armstrong)?

He is for Tomatis an initiate (from the Latin initium=beginning), someone who has access to a level not commonly reached by others, as a result of a revelation….Mozart was an Initiate because of his capacity to live at that level, especially when he was composing.  In fact, he was known to write entire pieces of music as if they were dictated to him by some divine inspiration.” (Listening for Wellness, Sollier, 2005)

3.  Mozart’s music has the ideal characteristics of rhythm and high frequencies that are most effective in the Tomatis Method.  These aspects of his music are crucial in the execution of the listening therapy.

“The diffusion of Mozart’s work through the Electronic Ear provides a desirable architecture for the neural foundations of listening (and more generally of perception), and so of the individual’s relationship with the surrounding world.” (The Conscious Ear, Tomatis, 1991)

“The music of Mozart, which is rich in higher harmonics and has little low frequency content, needs minimum energy to be clearly audible.”  (When Listening Comes Alive, Madaule, 1994)

4.  It is only the music of Mozart that comes up with the best results in the therapy.  It is a most effective tool in the administration of the program.

“Among the hundreds of pieces of music tested over 25 years, we selected and retained works by Mozart…owing to the good results they have enabled us to obtain.”  (The Conscious Ear, Tomatis, 1991)

“I also believe that Mozart himself was the first to benefit from the healing effects of his music. ‘Mozart composed music of radiant vivacity, sparkle, and wit at times when he was crushed by neglect, debt, and the awful discouragement of living his whole life insufficiently compensated and recognised’….”  (When Listening Comes Alive, Madaule, 1994)

“When I write my books, when I fling my theories onto paper, or meditate pen in hand, I always fill my study with Mozart….I need this acoustic recharge….To some, it may seem to be a whim, but I recommend surrounding oneself with music.  It energises you…” (The Conscious Ear, Tomatis, 1991)

5.  The music of Mozart has both a calming and energizing effect necessary for people who have sensory issues that cause them to be either over- or under-stimulated.  It helps attune the body into a state of composure and self-assurance.

“The consistent results obtained during the sound stimulation program with the use of Mozart provide another example of its universal quality.  His music is the only one we know that creates a perfect balance between the charging effect and a sense of calmness and well-being.  It relaxes the overly active and the anxious and energizes the tired and the depressed.”  (When Listening Comes Alive, Madaule, 1994)

“Both relaxing and energising, the music of Mozart can be used either to calm down the children when they are restless, ‘hyper’ or fidgety, or to give them a boost when they are tired or distractible.”  (When Listening Comes Alive, Madaule, 1994)

Before I say ta ta, I’d like to leave you with some Mozart music (and a short bio).  I hope it does make your day a little brighter and better.

Please do share how the music of Mozart has touched, inspired, or just made you feel good.