{Top 5 in 2013}

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Happy New Year’s Eve! It’s hard to believe that our first full year as Toneworks Music Therapy Services LLC. and as a blog is coming to a close. I thought it would be fun to take a look back at our most popular posts in 2013.

5. Alphabet Soup

Great for a food theme and pre-reading skills, sing along to find letters in the soup. Students will work on letter identification, self-regulation, and matching.

4. Move Your Scarves Everybody

An energetic song to get everybody up and moving with a scarf. Movements in the song are designed to work on gross motor goals such as crossing mid-line and bilateral coordination. All of our young and old clients love this song!

3. Valentine’s Bingo

Unfortunately, wikifonia is now part of musescore so while the links aren’t active, the bingo board is still there for Valentine’s day in a couple of months! Clients work on empathy, listening, sharing, and peer interaction during this fun musical game.

2. Brown Bear, Brown Bear

Whoever thought of singing the book, Brown Bear, Brown Bear, to the tune of Twinkle, Twinkle is a genius. Combining the familiar book and tune captures the imaginations of our students as we work on color identification, matching, imitating gross motor movements of the animals, and turn taking during the singable book.

1. Rhythm Games: Part 1

It’s hard to find interventions for school age or middle school clients that are age appropriate. In this post, you will find two rhythm games that are perfect for groups to practice working together, turn taking, sound location, and appropriate touch.

Thank you all for taking time to read our blog posts and comment as well! Happy New Year from Ms. Andrea & Ms. Lyndie.

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Friday Favorites: Brown Bear, Brown Bear Singable Book

brown bear cover

Image via Macmillan

I think most music therapists that work with kids know how versatile the book Brown Bear, Brown Bear can be during sessions. The words of Brown Bear fit with the first part of the tune of Twinkle, Twinkle. It’s not always a perfect fit of notes to words, so just in case you need a little bit of help, we’ve included a lead sheet with chords for you here. Simply repeat the musical line over and over for the whole book!

brown bear last page

Image via Building a Library

Goal Areas:

Language –

Print out clipart or use a pdf template that matches the animals in the book and laminate for durability. Have your children bring up the matching picture to you or to a felt board when their animal card matches the animal on the page. Symbol matching is a pre-requisite for letter identification and this book is a great way for little ones to practice matching. For easier matching, color in the pictures to match the book for identical symbol matching.

Pre-school Concepts –

Have children sing the color that they see on the page before you sing, or test them after you sing the page by singing “What color was the (animal)?”. You can also have laminated pieces of construction paper that the children can hold up or bring up to match the color of the animal on the page.

Kindergarten/Early Grade School Concept –

Print off the words of the colors in the book and laminate (e.g. Red or Brown). Use the color instead of the name of the animal because the color is always printed first on the page. Children can match their word by sight during the book. In addition, a pre-reading skill is to know that  books are read left to right and top to bottom, so having the children look for the “first” word in a sentence reinforces this concept.

Secondary goal areas and gains may include peer interaction and joint attention as children point to each other’s objects to help match colors and pictures. In addition, if there is matching involved, the children can work on cooperation and turn taking during Brown Bear. Finally, younger children can take turns pinching a page to turn to the next page to work on pincer grasp.

Thanks for taking time to read our post and we hope you can use this wonderful singable book with your little ones!