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Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Tuesday Tip! Your Public Library; What a Deal!

If you haven't visited your local library lately, you might be surprised to see how much is going on there! I won't even go into everything for adults (like free classes and book groups), since I'm all about the kids and family time.  In addition to story times for toddlers and preschoolers, many have baby story times- as in baby!  In addition to hearing books, songs, and finger plays, you'll get parenting ideas and get to actually spend a little time with adults. Older children can often do crafts related to a special story. You can see puppet shows, hear concerts, sometimes even live animals, and all kinds of other entertainment in an environment that's kid-friendly. Libraries are my favorite venue for performing, because they are cozy and not overly stimulating,. And after a concert or story time, you can go home with an armload of books... all for FREE! It's amazing! So next time you're looking for something to do, check out your local library. Visit my website for a complete schedule of my libraries concerts.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Tuesday Tip! Halloween (or harvest) Fun

Here's a quick and easy variation on my Four Little Paper Dolls song of the month. This is one of the most popular songs I do, and I use it year-round with different shapes and words. To hear and read about the original, click on this link. . 

Follow all the instructions for the paper dolls song, but instead of paper dolls, cut a pumpkin shape out of folded orange paper. You can draw different faces on each of the four linked pumpkins with a black marker. And Voila! A brand new song! Now you will sing,, "Four little jack-o-lanterns in a row..." These will be so fast and easy to make, you can make one for each child if you are a preschool teacher. Kids who are old enough to handle scissors can cut out and decorate their own. And of course the possibilities are endless for decorating with stickers, or glitter. In fact, now that I think about it, I'm going to do this today with my grandson! He just turned 3 and is very proud of his cutting skills! 

Note! If you don't celebrate Halloween, you can just make and sing "Four Little Pumpkins in a row..."

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Tuesday Tip! Arachnid Fun

"I'm just hangin' out waiting for flies!"

This is a great variation on my Arachnid Song (free song of the month for October, 2009. Here's a link to it.
I wrote this song as a round, but of course that doesn't work well with young children. So last year I tried something different, and it's been a real hit! Read the directions below, then go listen to the melody on my website. Sing each line of the song twice, having children echo you each time. Use a separate motion for each line, as noted below.

1.Arachnid (echo) Arachnid (echo)  slap thighs in rhythm
2.I'm a spider (echo) I'm a spider (echo) alternate claw hands on thighs, moving higher than slaps
3. I am not an insect (echo) I am not an insect (echo) nod head "no" while sliding open hands back and forth in front of body

Now... repeat the whole thing in a whisper, then one last time very loudly.
End by repeating "I am not an insect 3 times, getting softer and softer, and doing all 3 motions, ending with hands resting on thighs.

Young 3 year-olds are able to do this version because there is so much repetition, and the movements are simple. Older children love it because it takes on the feeling of a camp song

I like to read and sing Raffi's Spider on the Floor (available at most libraries), and do the limbo with my Limbo Under the  Spider's Web (another song of the month). The link is here: At this link, in addition to the song, you'll see links to other educational websites with information and activities about spiders.

Happy Arachnid-ing!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Tuesday Tip! Special Teacher Resources

If you're reading this blog, you hopefully know I have over 100 free songs for you to download from my website under "Songs of the Month." And you're downloading them every month, right? But you may not know that on my workshops page, there are even more songs you can download, as well as my entire workshop booklet with tons of information and activities. So if you're a teacher or daycare provider, go to my workshop page and take advantage of this free resource. Here's a link to the page on my website.