Summer is here and it’s time to move music outdoors! Explore the wonderful world around you and find music everywhere. Find a cool spot under a shady tree and listen to the wind blow through the leaves, the birds singing or the sounds of traffic. Do rhythm activities by tapping sticks on fences, garbage cans or sandbox toys. See if children can follow your lead when you count out a rhythm. Call and response songs are a great way to stimulate imagination and practice working with patterns. Try a few rounds of “Down By the Bay,” changing up the rhyme at the end to create silly and entertaining lyrics. Children repeat each line until the final rhyme.
“Down by the bay (repeat)
Where the watermelons grow (repeat)
Back to my home (repeat)
I dare not go (repeat)
For if I do (repeat)
My mother will say (repeat)
Did you ever see a duck driving a truck
Down by the bay?”
Alternate the underlined words with other rhyming pairs such as a dog chasing a frog or a moose sipping some juice. Use the sights and sounds around you to make up the next line. Challenge your child to come up with sillier or more difficult rhymes. Having fun with words and sounds through singing is a great way to add to your child’s vocabulary and get them ready for reading.
–Sara M. at KDL’s Sand Lake/Nelson Township Branch
This article originally appeared in our Early Lit Bits eNewsletter. Read the most recent issue online or sign up to receive this monthly update highlighting early literacy tips and resources for parents and caregivers.