James St Preschool and Nursery Professional Development – Musical Play

Final Reflection by Sarah Marra

It has been such a pleasure to work alongside staff in such a beautiful, nurturing preschool and nursery. Over the past eight weeks I have noticed wonderful amounts of musical play happening organically around the James St environment. Children are singing as they play independently, sharing familiar songs as they play together, keeping the beat on the playground and exploring the natural sounds of their outside world.

Musical play has helped to secure routines in a positive, playful way. The preschoolers are lining up with ease to a familiar, repetitive song; the nursery children are happily following daily routines with sung, clear instructions; all of the children are able to regulate and prepare themselves for learning when deep pressure and song are united in basic routines.

I have watched the staff confidence grow in taking group music sessions as well as in using song to underpin routines and activities. Group music sessions have become relaxed, improvisational, and harmonious.

One of the most exciting things about using music to develop movement, communication, social interactions and understanding is having the privilege of witnessing “firsts”. The children at James St Preschool and Nursery were no exception. I was so privileged to be able to use music to underpin a child’s first steps, a child’s first social group engagement, a child’s first understanding of their own space in relation to others, as well as many other special moments.

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Testimonials

Yesterday’s workshop (The Art of Musical Play : A Summer Workshop) was a stunning time of exploring art and music through play. The day was infused with sheer joy and creativity, a refreshing reminder of the value of expressive play for adults and children alike. Julie Wylie is such an inspiration in her vast knowledge and the beautiful way she shares her love for music and people.

The perfect setting for a Summer Art Music Workshop.

Painting to "We are making music together" using long toi toi fronds.

Sam Gauntlett
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