Hi everybody! Here’s another post I’ve been looking forward to doing; a Sing-along! Every activity plan in Clever Clovers and Reaching Roses (coming soon) has a sing-along included (with song ideas and lyrics provided at the end of each activity plan). Singing with your baby is so beneficial for so many reasons but this post is focused on the language development component (mainly vocabulary).
Mondays and Wednesdays I choose one activity we did today from the Clever Clovers curriculum and share our experiences (starring my twin babies)
This week’s Theme: Hands & Feet
Activity Description: Sing Along: Sing songs about hands and feet. (See song list following the lesson plan for ideas).
This Activity’s Main Area of Development: Language
Specific Skill: Connecting language to objects and motions
O&M’s Ages (at the time of posting this): 17 months + 2 Weeks
1. As many of you know, I often use a sing-along as part of our learning routine. That is, I use it as a warm-up activity to whatever main activity we are going to do. I find this works because they get to know the songs better (with a lot of repetition) and it prepares them for what will follow.
Pictures from today’s sing-along. (I love how expressive they are becoming)
How to teach songs to babies: (excuse my voice…I almost didn’t post these for fear of annoying you)
- When introducing a song for the first few times sing very slowly, annunciate and do the actions slowly. Encourage your baby to mimic. If your baby doesn’t mimic, you can hold your baby’s hands and do the actions for him/her.
- At this age, songs should include actions because among many reasons, they cannot really sing words yet (it gives them something to do) and it helps them learn new vocabulary (doing or pointing to the words they hear).
- When singing, don’t be afraid to “pause” the song to give encouraging instructions. For example, if your baby is not responding or doing the actions, you can pause after each line and say “do it like this!” or if your baby is just starting to participate you can pause and say “well done, good clapping!”(ex), then continue singing the next line. This strategy is evident in a couple of the videos above. Below is a slight example of this (in this case, they were being very silly so I had to pause and remind them of what they should be doing)
- Personally, when I introduce a new song, I don’t use a recording of it. I find it too fast and often distracting (in the case of language acquisition). Once my babies/students become more familiar with a song, then I add music and/or a recording.
As a final activity, to sum up AND to calm them down, I sat them down to review the parts of the body they have learned. We have already completed the My Face! activity plan, so this was a great opportunity to bring that prior learning of language/knowledge/comprehension forward. (See: Bringing Language Forward, pg.4 of the Clever Clovers Curriculum Guide)