Monday 29 April 2013

Clapping and whole body movement songs for preschoolers

Kids love to fact they love to make noise!!
Clapping songs and rhymes are just wonderful to incorporate learning words, rhythms, songs and movements.

A simple rhyme to clap along to and learn off by heart is "Pat-a-Cake".  It has a lovely, simple beat and is easy to remember.  Don't forget to bake a cake as well!

Here is a link to Sparkle Box, a UK website with loads of free resources for nursery rhymes, songs and stories.

The song "If you're happy and you know it" starts off with clapping actions and then gets more complicated but fun.

This is a cute YouTube animated version

I have to admit to Aussie loyalty here but the Wiggles are FAB!
Here is their version of the action song "Head, shoulders, knees and toes".
A great ones for teaching body parts and getting active.

Come on you guys, you already know these songs, so get out there with the kids and pets and start clapping, singing and moving to words!!  All great learning activities for preschoolers.

Monday 15 April 2013

Clapping and skipping games for kids. Let's get happy clappy and hippy skippy :)

Believe it or not, the beats of language are so important for children's literacy learning.

Children's hand clapping and skipping games are a fantastic way of combining knowledge of words, learning rhythm and rhyme, moving in time to beats, memorising songs and lyrics and motor co-ordination.  All these skills in one happy event.

Here is a YouTube example of a cute and simple clapping game called "Tic, Tac Toe".  It also incorporates the game of scissors, paper , rock which kids love all over the world.

Skipping games have been around forever, all over the world.

I remember playing a skipping game where you were in the middle of the long rope by yourself while people turned it for you.  You jumped and acted out this little poem/song "Teddy Bear"
"Teddy bear, teddy bear go upstairs,
Teddy bear, teddy bear say your prayers,
Teddy bear, teddy bear switch off the light,
Teddy bear, teddy bear say good night
"Good Night"
exit the rope

You do actions to each can invent your own :)

There was another one where you lined up while 2 people turned the big rope and you all chanted:

"Up the Mississippi, if you miss a loop you're out"

You each, in turn, had to run in, do 1 jump, then run out.
Great fun!

Chanting, singing, clapping and moving all at the one time is just so good for young minds and bodies.  It stimulates memory and cues children into words and rhyme.  Motor memory is also great for the brain.

Enjoy being a kid again and teach your children games that they will love and learn from.

Monday 1 April 2013

Syllables are sensational! The rhythm of life!

Sweet Charity (Soundtrack from the Musical), New Broadway Cast

I was recalling the words from a wonderful song from the musical Sweet Charity called "The Rhythm of Life"
It is an up tempo song with a catchy quote from the chorus:

"And The Rhythm Of Life is a powerful beat,
Puts a tingle in your fingers and a tingle in your feet,
Rhythm in your bedroom,
Rhythm in the street, 
Yes, The Rhythm Of Life is a powerful beat"

Syllables mean the same to me :)

Words have beats and patterns and children especially love to hear spoken and sung words with rhythm and beats.
Even when they recite the alphabet, they sing it as a song or say the whole alphabet with a set pattern.
Sesame Street has cute versions of the alphabet.  Here is one with Elmo :)

Showing your children how language and words work by 'beating out' the syllables is so important.  Let the wannabe drummer in you loose and go crazy banging and hitting your pots and pans to beat out words.  If you don't have equipment use your body by tapping, clapping, stomping, jumping, clicking .  Start with your family names.  They are always fun to do and kids relate to people's and pet's names.

Syllables ROCK!!

A cute baby girl drumming on pots and pans with a wooden spoon.  Spoon with some motion blur. - stock photo