It can be tricky incorporate gross motor movement interventions during music therapy with toddlers. In our experience, toddlers tend to run away or explore shelves as soon as you ask them to stand up! However, if you have the right environment and pacing, toddlers can meet gross motor goals while dancing and moving to music. The song we bring you today uses changes in pacing and movements to keep the attention of the youngest clients.
“Move Your Scarves Everybody” is a piggyback song. The original is by Lisa Yves and the Young Beboppers and titled “Clap Your Hands”. You can listen to a sample and purchase the song on iTunes here. It’s a great song to use as a movement intervention without any props and if you don’t have enough hands present to do a live song.
Before we get to the song, let’s talk about transitions into and out of this therapeutic music intervention. Transitions can be a prime time to work on goals and should be just as thought out as the actual song. Music therapy students and interns may quickly find that transitions can make or break a session. The following are a few examples of goals that you can work in while transitioning into the intervention.
You can have children close their eyes and hold out their hands for a surprise colors to work on non-rigidity. You can also have children identify colors while you take them out of the bag and choose a color as you walk by so the task doesn’t take too long. Older children may take turns coming up to you and choosing a color to work on waiting and turn taking skills. Toddlers can reach up and balance briefly in tip toes thinkers you hold a scarf over their head.
Here are the lyrics to our version of “Move Your Scarves Everybody” and a link to the lead sheet and chords.
Move your scarves everybody, move your scarves (show a arc of movement above head with both arms like a rainbow)
Let the music and rhythm bring you joy when you’re with them
Move your scarves everybody, move your scarves
Round and round everybody, round and round (circles with scarves)
Up and down everybody, up and down (jump while moving scarves up and down)
Sweep the floor everybody, sweep the floor (crouch on feet while sweeping floor across midline)
Tiptoe round everybody, tiptoe round (tiptoe with scarves over heads, shhh!)
Make them small everybody, make them small (scrunch up scarves so they are ready to be put away)
Please feel free to change the movements based on individual or group goals. These movements are meant to engage toddlers and preschoolers in gross motor movement that requires bilateral coordination and crossing the midline. We hope your toddlers have a blast moving and singing along to “Move Your Scarves Everybody”!