Sound of Music Unit for Preschoolers
We have shared about more traditionally thought of arts like painting and collage making as part of our Bambini Art Project. Today I'm branching out into another art form: Music. My choose happy goal for April was to Sing and Dance more and despite having company for most of the month, which always throws off normal routines a bit, we have managed to fit in quite a bit of both. At first I thought I would put singing and dancing together because they so often happen hand in hand, but then I realized they deserve their own attention. Today I am focusing on music.
When music fills our house I find we are all in a better mood. Our morning chores are more cheerful, our quiet time is more focused, and our evening crabbies are less crabby. Ever since diving into our Sound of Music project, I have discovered that music is a huge part of our lives. I have included some Sound of Music specific ideas at the bottom of the post, but most of our Music Unit would be enjoyable whether or not you had read the story or watched the movie. After spending some time talking about, reenacting, and singing about the movie, our unit spread to other aspect of music and our lives. Our twins love to listen to music and sing. They know hundreds of songs and often invent their own. It is not at all uncommon to hear them singing to themselves while they play.
Like making music, the skill of listening and appreciating sound is also worth practicing and something that enriches life. Have you ever sat in one of your favorite spots and closed your eyes? My favorite spot is the beach. I love to sit and close my eyes (while someone else is of course closely monitoring my kids by water!) and listen to the sounds. The children laughing, water splashing and lapping up on the shore, the seagulls. These are some of my favorite sounds and to me they are music. What is music to you? To your kids? The sound of a rushing river? The sounds of different truck or airplane engines rumbling? Or just some good dancing music? Play around with sound and music and I promise you will find your lives enriched.
Here are some ideas for filling your home or classroom with more music!
*To a concert. Outside ones are my favorites for little ones.
*Check your local theater or concert hall to see if they do family friendly performances. We loved these free ones at the Overture.
*Go to the library for storytime. Singing and dancing is almost always involved!
*Go on a Listening walk. Not particularly musical, but tunes you in to the sounds in your world.
*Listen to bands in a parade. That was our twins' favorite part of the Chicago St Patty's Day Parade.
*Go to a music festival. We go to this one every year in Wisconsin.
*I also shared a few more Music Inspired Field Trips in this post.
*10 Books about Music
*Look for sing along eBooks on Amazon. We loved this Construction themed one.
*Love this darling collection of books of songs for babies from Growing Book by Book.
*Sandra Boynton has some fun musical stories for little ones, we love this one, and some CD/book compilations.
*Quiet LOUD is so much fun with toddlers. Read and then play this fun activity.
- Have it on in the background while you do chores.
- Designate one song your Clean Up Song and turn it on to signal clean up time.
- Fun Songs for Toddlers from A Mom With A Lesson Plan
- 20 Best Preschool Songs with a Free Printable from Wildflower Ramblings
-Living Montessori Now has a great collection of group time songs for preschoolers on a range of topics
*Add Simple Hand Motions, Props, or other Visuals:
- Our twins love this Hey Elephant song with visuals.
- This sweet post has some simple counting songs for babies from Simple Home Blessing
- More prop ideas from Childhood 101
- Great songs with motions for toddlers from Heart of Deborah.
*Find some new Musicians to Love:
- Learning and Exploring Through Play introduced me to Music with Nancy
- And loved reading this interview with Jim Gill from The Life of Jennifer Dawn
*Make Sounds Other Ways:
- Make a Shaking Snack
*Make your own Musical Shakers with these simple directions.
*Other Music Inspired Ideas:
- KCEdventures has a great round up of Music Activities and Instruments for Kids.
- Make these glittery stars to sing with Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.
- Music for Toddlers ideas from Mama Smiles. I love the musical games.
- Betsy from BPhotoArt has a great resource for Raising Kids Who Love Music
The Sound of Music.
For us, this project truly began with my daughter's interest in the movie The Sound of Music. Obviously, many units on music will be wonderful without the influences of this movie, but since I have gathered some resources to support her interest, I thought I would share them with you.
Movie: The Sound of Music
We have the original but you can also get a Sing-Along Edition.
You could also compare and contrast with the new Live version with Carrie Underwood.
Book: The Sound of Music: A Classic Collectible Pop-Up
This is the only child appropriate book I could find that has the story of the Sound of Music. It is a pop-up book and is beautifully illustrated. It is a little fragile, being a pop-up, but our twins have been gentle with it. The story follows the stage musical script so the songs will seem out of order to someone more familiar with the Julie Andrews version, but they are all there.
Puppets: Sunny Puppets Grey Baby Goat Marionette
These are puppets similar to the goat puppets in the puppet show in the middle of the Sound of Music movie.
Dolls: Sound of Music play items
There are several Sound of Music dolls and other play materials on Etsy as well. We have a peg doll set similar to these ones, which our daughter adores.
Varied. See Below.
Check out Every Parent Can Teach Their Toddler: Learning Through Play Every Day for more toddler friendly advice and activities.
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