I’m So Glad to Be Me!

Don’t you wish you could bottle the unrestrained joy of infants and toddlers when they are happy and excited? One way young children show enthusiasm is through clapping. Get ready to sing, clap and dance along with this happy new song celebrating those small moments of pleasure.

I’m So Glad to Be Me

E.K. Schwartz 2016

I’m going to clap with my hands

I’m going to dance with my knees

I’m going to sing out loud ‘I’m glad to be me!’

I’m going to clap with my hands

I’m going to dance with my knees

I’m going to sing out loud ‘I’m so glad to be me!’

Here’s my head

And here’s my toes

I know how to think

And I know where to go

Here’s my eyes, I know how to look

I can jump and play and read a book.

I’m going to clap with my hands

I’m going to dance with my knees

I’m going to sing out loud ‘I’m glad to be me!’

I’m going to clap with my hands

I’m going to dance with my knees

I’m going to sing out loud ‘I’m so glad to be me!’

Can’t Sit Still

Waiting in line at the grocery store? or in the Doctor’s waiting room? These are times when a parent’s need to focus and wait really clashes with the child’s need to move. Here is a brand new Sprouting Melodies Sing at Home to help you and your child make it though these tough times. It might just be one of the most fun songs I have ever written!

Enjoy!

Look outside! The wind is blowing

The people are moving and the cars are going

And down in the ground all the flowers are growing

And I can’t sit still.

The wind is blowing, and I can’t sit still

The cars are going, and I can’t sit still

The flowers are growing, and I can’t sit still

No, I can’t sit still

 

Look outside! The bunnies are hopping

The birds are singing and their heads are bopping

And up in the sky the sun is not stopping

And I can’t sit still.

The bunnies are hopping, and I can’t sit still

The birds are bopping, and I can’t sit still

The sun’s not stopping, and I can’t sit still

No, I can’t sit still

 

I can move my body

I can move my feet

I can wiggle, wiggle, wiggle

In my seat

But I can’t sit still

The Do’s and Don’ts of Music in Your Early Childhood Classroom

If you are like me, you have agonized over choosing the perfect early childhood classroom to care for your child as you head back to work.  My children are grown now but I clearly remember as a young mother, feeling that the future success of my child hung on the nursery school class I chose.  I checked up on the certifications and experience of the staff. I examined the curriculum and daily schedule. I inspected the room for safety flaws and looked for any indication of less than cleanly equipment.  I certainly expected a higher standard of the Centers and Schools than I maintained in my own home and my own parenting!crossing signal

It is curious, though, that I never thought to ask about the place of music in the early childhood environment. After all, that is the business I’m in.  In the years since, I have had many opportunities to visit day care centers, early childhood schools and early learning programs. So to add to your checklist when choosing your child’s day care, nursery school or preschool, here are some thoughts about the Do’s and Don’ts of music in early childhood environments.

Green light

Quality early learning environments:

DO have active, participatory music making as part of the day. This could be singing songs, playing instruments or moving and dancing to music.

DO have staff members who are comfortable making music with children and who are knowledgeable about music development.

DO use live and recorded music that is developmentally appropriate.  Equipment to play recorded music provides a pleasing sound quality.

DO vary the acoustic environment.  Recorded music, live music making, talking, and silence are all incorporated throughout the day.

stop sign

Quality early learning environments:

DO NOT have music playing continuously in the background.  Constant recorded music can become like ‘wallpaper’.  The children will no longer notice or value it, and the sounds can increase the noise level and perhaps contribute to stress.

DO NOT use music that is not developmentally appropriate. This includes not playing most popular radio stations.  Adult music will frequently have lyrics that are not supportive of early childhood learning.   Loud dynamics and fast tempos will influence children’s level of activity and might further dysregulation.

DO NOT limit or contain the children’s music making to rote or habitual responses.  This means that staff will need to know musical development and accept and celebrate musical creativity.

DO NOT dismiss the importance of music as a valuable part of every child’s life.

Best of luck with the new school year.  As always, I welcome your comments and questions.

Beth

P.S. My children seemed to have turned out just fine 😉

A Special Welcome to the Dads of Sprouting Melodies

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Sprouting Melodies is a great place for a Dad, a grandpa, a brother or an uncle to spend special time with the young child in their life.  We are there to transform a routine morning or afternoon into a special and memorable moment.  One of our dads told us:

I am so impressed at how you get the whole place going.
As an infant my son just took it all in; the rhythm, the repetition.
Now it’s the highlight of our week, being in the middle of the music!

 Here are some of the ways that Sprouting Melodies is committed to making a musical place where you can feel comfortable, valued and welcomed.

We Change the Song,
                    So You Can Sing Along

The most important voice for your child is yours. We do know from research that singing a song in the same key each time helps the child to develop a good sense of pitch. But here at Sprouting Melodieswe are most interested in developing a good sense of parenting. We want Dads to sing and play with their child, and so we adjust the key of each song to make singing comfortable for you and make singing along with your child an easy and natural part of your play.

We Give Tips on What to Expect;
Your Job of Parenting is Given Respect

People often joke with new parents and say that ‘children don’t come with instructions’.  During a Sprouting Melodiessession, though, you will have a safe community in which the challenges of parenting are accepted and questions and concerns can be shared.  Your Sprouting Melodies Provider has extensive training in early childhood development and they know how to help you negotiate the stages of growing up. Along with the fun and music, we will share with you quick and simple tips on children and development called ‘Sprouting Melodies Sayings’.

This Time is Special for Your Child and You;
That is the Core of All That We Do

Contemporary life is often hectic and busy. Our Sprouting Melodiesclasses are designed to give you and your child a calm oasis where the two of you can enjoy each other in a fun, engaging activity. Since we focus on the parent/child relationship, there is freedom to just be together and enjoy those precious moments that pass by too quickly.

See you in the music soon.

Beth

Meaningful Moments Making Music

“Let’s sing it again, Mom.”  Music is such a part of our environment that we sometimes take its power and appeal for granted.   But for children, music is a natural way to express themselves, to become part of a family and community and to learn about the world.

Children are born music makers.  Recent brain research shows that very young infants can recognize melodies, match pitches and show pleasure when Mom or Dad sings to them.  Music is full of the very things that children need to learn best: predictable structure, opportunity for repetition and emotional and sensory stimulation that inspires engagement.  [Read more…]

Welcome to Sprouting Melodies

“Music for young children, like music in general, is a unique experience that is unlike anything else. For young children with no language there is still music. For the young child with limited movement, there is still music. For a child who cannot see or touch objects in the environment, there is still music. Even for children with hearing loss, there can still be music.”

-Elizabeth Schwartz, LCAT, MT-BC, Co-Founder, Raising Harmony

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[Read more…]