Friday, May 24, 2013

Early Literacy Fun - Singing

“You want me to sing in front of my child? You must be joking!” Not to worry, it really is not as intimidating as it sounds to sing in front of your kids. Be silly. Have fun. They don’t care if you’re tone deaf so long as you are having a good time together! Singing helps children to develop phonological awareness by stretching out the sounds of spoken language. Story songs can help them to develop narrative skills as well. Songs also are a great way to pass along your cultural heritage through folk songs and other traditional music. Here are some simple ways to sing with your child.

  • Listen to music during road trips and sing along together. It doesn’t even have to be “kids” music, anything you can sing along with is great.
  • Make up songs about daily activities such as brushing teeth, making lunch and going to bed. You can base them on traditional tunes or make up some all your own!
  • Make a drum set out of old plastic storage containers. See how the sizes and shapes make differences in the tone when you bang on them.
  • Check out a kids’ music CDs from the library
  • Share your favorite folk songs. Lullabies are especially nice before bed and when waking up from a bad dream.
  • Make a tambourine with rice by sealing two plates together with the loose rice in between, or make rain sticks with beans in used paper tubes and sealing the ends closed.
  • Check out books based on songs or that have CDs with music included. Our libraries have books based on the work of John Denver and Peter, Paul and Mary to name a few.
  • Sing songs with fun and active motions, like “If You’re Happy and You Know It” and “The Hokey Pokey”. The motions are good for gross motor development and also help them remember the words to the song.
  • Listen to instrumental music together. Even without words music is a powerful instrument for sharing cultures and the sounds of language.
  • Have a dance party with music of different tempos, some really fast, others slow. See who can come up with the best dance move!

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