Sitting On The Farm by: Bob King

Sittin on the Farm

Oh how I love to sing books!!!  I am not sure how many I have in my music therapy collection but you can be sure I will be sharing some of my favorites over the next few weeks. 

Sitting on the Farm is a great book by Bob King.  I love to use this book in the springtime during my Farm week.  This book is a great way to teach animal identification, and can be used as an  introduction the food chain. 

I love the repeated lines throughout this book. Especially the “Munch, Munch, Munch.”

Over the years I have used this song/book simply as a book that is sung.  As I sang through each verse I had my students name the animals on each page.  For my students who used adapted switches, I recorded the “Munch Munch Munch” on a big mack and had them push the button at the designated spot in the book. Oh the out break of giggles we received!!

At the completion of the book I asked questions:

Where does this story take place?

What was on the farmers knee?

What did the farmer say when the animal got on his knee?

What did the farmer pick up?

What animal the biggest/smallest?

Was the first picture an animal or an insect?

How many of the pictures are mammals?

Who did the farmer call when the dog got on his knee?

If my students had a hard time recalling the information,  I sang the part of the phrase that gave them the answer.  “I picked up the….”

To meet the continuing  needs of my students, I have created a few adapted books ABSittin on the Farmand visuals to go along with this book/song.  First I made a file folder game where the students had to identify the animal in the song and place it in the number block where it belongs.  My goals for those students were animal identification and ordinal positioning as well as following directions and increasing focus and attention.

I later had a few students who needed strategies to label word to picture. So I created a book where the students were given a “word bank” and were asked to find the animal word that went along with the picture in book. Last year I created an interactive computer program using Promethean Planet so the students could independently play the song and label the pictures during computer time.

For those students who needed to work on impulse control I gave them a drum and told them they could ONLY play on… “Munch Munch Much.” For other groups I had them clap on “Munch Munch Munch” if I needed to work on motor imitation.

Last but not least… I have also used puppets for this song.  I have passed out the various puppets to my students and when they heard their part… they were asked to come to the front and put the puppet on my knee.  For this group I was looking to see if my students could follow 2 step directions, transition from one place to another, take turns, and increase eyecontact with peers.

The ways to use this one song could go on and on!!

I love how one song can work on so many skills!!

On a side note, I like to sing all my songs “live.”  However, if you need a recording, Bob McGrath, has a great upbeat recording of the song I would recommend!! 

If you use this song or have this book.. how do you use it?

Music and Literacy ~ Dinosaur Pet

Dinosaur Pet

Reading to children has proven to be essential for speech and language development. However, have you ever thought about singing a book to your child? Singing, is a natural activity for children and provides opportunities for them to build language fluency which can transfer to other aspects of their lives. Songs, like predictable books, help children link oral language to the written language through rhyme, rhythm and repetition. When songs become quickly memorized the music can be used as a structural prompt to reinforce the relationship between the songs text and the words in print.

Over time, I will be sharing several of my favorite books to sing to my students on this blog. Some of the books will be songs that have been turned into books and books that can easily be turned into songs.

The first book I would like to share is this wonderful little find called Dinosaur Pet.  My students have loved singing along with me as we sing through all the months of the year. What is wonderful about this book along with the catchy tune of “Calendar Girl” are the colorful pictures and the bonus CD that comes with the book.

At the end of the song I have been able to ask the students a variety of questions such as:

How many months are in a year?

What is the story about?

How many turkeys did the dinosaur eat on Thanksgiving?

What costume did the dinosaur wear for Halloween?

What color toothbrush did the dinosaur brush his teeth with?

How long was the dinosaurs tail?

If you had a dinosaur what would you name it?

My students have surprised me with how many questions they have been able to answer!  I recommend this book to all parents, teachers, and therapist!!  It has been a wonderful way to teach calendar skills, rote counting to 12, answering “Wh” questions, comprehension, and gross motor imitation.

If you  have this book in your collection how do you use it with your students?