Friday, June 28, 2013

In Case of an Emergency...

Welcome back to More with Music!

I'm working my way through my list of songs that I want to share.  Many of the songs were written and recorded this past school year and I'm so glad I have the time over summer break to share them with all of the readers here!

The song post for today has to do with emergencies.  There are so many things parents and teachers try to teach students about emergencies.  There are also so many (too many actually!), different kinds of emergencies.  While there are basic safety rules to follow during emergencies, many parents and teachers teach students early on to use a phone and dial 9-1-1.

Dialing 9-1-1 is precisely what today's song is all about!  The main idea of the song (which is repeated) is the phone number itself.  I also included other details and instructions associated with calling 9-1-1.
The instructions include:
Stay with the injured person
Tell the operator your name
Tell the operator your address (where you are)
Follow directions
Listen closely
Stay calm
Don't hang up-stay on the line

I hope you have a great weekend and stop back soon!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

~ Energy Travels in Waves ~

Welcome back to More with Music!

Today I am sharing a song that helps teach students about energy and different types of waves.  The four types of waves in this song are ocean waves, light waves, sound waves and seismic waves.

This a great song to use with students when introducing wave types, as it gives examples and brief descriptions of each wave type.  Many students enjoy "doing the wave" (they have probably seen this done at football, baseball, and basketball stadiums), and you can incorporate this each time the chorus is sung.  Students can make a wave motion with their arms and then students can "pass" the wave to other students.

The chorus of the song can also be recorded into a voice output device (BigMac,etc.), so that a student who is nonverbal can participate in the song as well.

I hope you are enjoying the summer.  Having free time is fabulous in my neck of the woods. :)
Have a great weekend and be sure to stop by next week for another song post!

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Hands on the Drum

Welcome back to More with Music!

I've really been looking forward to sharing today's song post!
The song is called "Hands on the Drum", and it's a song that I've been tweaking and singing in my head for awhile.

It's a very simple song that could help students (1:1 or within a group), work on following directions while playing a drum in different ways.  There are three different ways of playing a drum in this song:  playing to the beat with hands, rubbing the drum with hands, and tapping the drum with fingers.

The first way of playing the drum involves listening and patting to the beat on the drum.
The second way involves rubbing the drum with the hand.  Many students really enjoy rubbing a drum due to the sensory feedback they get from the drum head.
The third way involves isolating fingers to tap the drum.  This way is also a great for students working on finger dexterity.  This can be done with one to two fingers walking across the drum or using all fingers to crawl across the drum.

I kept the lyrics for this song really simple and incorporated a variety of strumming, finger-picking,etc., to musically reflect the hand movements of each part.

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have a great weekend!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Plants Have 4 Parts

Welcome back to More with Music!

I've been working on several songs lately and can't wait to share them here on More with Music!
One song I've been meaning to share (and recently added some extras to), is about plants.
This song helps students learn the four basic parts of a plant:  the roots, stem, leaves, and flower.

When I sing this song with students, I incorporate the counting aspect of the song to motivate the students to participate. With younger students, we use our fingers to count while we sing the song. With older students, we sing each number, and I pause after each number to highlight the counting. Using a pause in the music is a great idea if you want to assess and motivate a student participating in an academic skill such as counting, labeling, spelling,etc..

I highly recommend using a visual with this song.  The students learn so much when music and academic information is paired with a visual that they can see and touch.  If you don't want to use a real plant as an example, you can use an artificial plant or a picture of a real plant as well.

As always, thanks for stopping by!  Stay tuned for more song posts this summer!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

What is Climate?

Welcome back to More with Music!

Lately, I've been going through all of my songs that I've written and I've started a list of songs to share this summer here on More with Music.

Today's song share is one that has to do with weather.  I call this song "Climate song"  and it helps students understand more about climate.  Mark Twain is quoted for saying, "Climate is what we expect, weather is what we get.".  I think this quote is a wonderful way to explain climate to students.

When we travel and go to different places around the world, we expect certain types of weather from certain places, during certain times of the year.  We depend on this kind of information when we pack for our trips.  Sometimes we are prepared and sometimes we are surprised.  :)

Thanks for stopping by!  Stay tuned for additional songs over the summer.  

Monday, June 10, 2013

Summer is Hot!

Welcome back to More with Music!

Summer break is here and another school year has come to an end.  I love working with all the students each year, but I also look forward to having the summer off and getting a break from my normal daily schedule.

Even though summer doesn't officially start until June 21st, I sing about summer with students the last few weeks of school each year.  We talk about summer weather, activities, foods,etc.. One of their favorite songs about summer is  "Summer is Hot, Hot, Hot!".

Within this song, many summer vocabulary words and conversation starters are included.
Some key words in the song are:  summer, hot, sunscreen, sunglasses, popsicles, ice cream, seashells, seashore, swimming, fishing, sailing

To sing this song, I first assign students the repeating phrase, "It's Hot, Hot, Hot".  For students who are nonverbal, I record this repeating phrase on a BigMac voice output device and give them time to try it out and encourage them to participate.  In most groups, I repeat each verse twice.

I also use pictures to represent each vocabulary word for summer.  Students can point to or label each picture and then add comments like, "I have red sunglasses", or "I like chocolate ice cream".  If there's one thing I know for sure-students love to talk about food!  So, songs with any kind of food in them are great attention-getters. :)

I hope you enjoy your summer.  Be sure to stop by More with Music over the summer to hear more songs!

Sunday, June 2, 2013

You have to FREEZE!

Welcome back to More with Music!
The weather is getting warmer and warmer and there's only one more week of school (plus a couple of work days for me).  I'm ready for summer!

I've shared today's song post before, but today I'm adding additional ideas for using this song with small to larger groups.
The song is called "Play and then FREEZE!".  Many students have a hard time controlling their impulses.  When the song directs students to "FREEZE",  students have to use self control in order to stop playing their instruments.  They have to resist the impulse to continue playing their instrument and stop playing instead.  This is easier said then done for many students, but the songs allows them to practice this skill in a fun way.

Once students practice freezing and have pretty good impulse control, you can incorporate a few additional ideas with this song.  If you have a smaller group of students, you can introduce new instruments and/or instruments that require following specific instructions with this song.  Each student can have a turn playing the one instrument and when the song says "Freeze", the student stops and you pass the instrument to the next student.  Another idea would be for small or larger groups.  You would need pictures or extra instruments to hold up as examples.  Students all pick a rhythm instrument and you hold up a picture or sample of the instrument you want to play during the first verse of the song.  At each "FREEZE" you hold up a different card, signaling those students to play their instruments (i.e. drums play one verse, then bells, then rhythm sticks,etc.)  This way, students have to control their impulses and attend to others while they take turns.  The students also have to pay attention to figure out which instrument is playing next and then follow directions.

How do you implement the "freeze" in your music therapy sessions?