March into FUN!!

Developmental Music Therapy Group

We have had a fun time during our developmental music therapy groups this busy month of March. We learned how to wait in line to jump over rainbows while we cheered on our friends. We held onto our rainbows as we sang, danced, and followed directions in the context of a song. Mr. Frog helped us work on lip closure, and one finger isolation as we sang and he made everyone laugh and giggle. We also had a fun time playing our tambourines as we did a fun Irish jig. Our little train allowed us to learn how to push the button to hear the music then push the train to a friend. It’s so hard to learn how to share at the age 2! My little ones did such a great job we had time for parachute play!! We sang “one little, two little, three little shamrocks….bouncing up and down. They learned how to shake softly as we sang part one and quickly as we sang bouncing up and down. The kids were quick to find the lucky shamrocks and race back to the parachute to do it all over again!!

We followed it up by making rainbow soup!! Each child received an object representing one color and waited patiently for their color to be sung. Once they heard their color they transitioned from mom to the big pot where they were able to stir the pot. I was so proud of my kiddos for being great listeners while also being so brave to come up to the front of the room. They did a fabulous job!!! We rounded off our fun time with a short yet sweet little book called, “You are my sunshine” for a little rocking and snuggle time with mom and dad. For those brave enough to reach into the sensory bin, they were rewarded with playing with the Leprechaun’s loot!

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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?