REFLECTIONS ABOUT MUSICAL PLAY WITH THE CHILDREN FROM JAMES ST by Sarah Marra

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It was wonderful to see the children in both the nursery and preschool become really settled in their music routines today. They are familiar with our routines – coming to the same place, starting with the Hello song, twinkle twinkle and finishing with “music time has finished” and Ka Kite.

We have intentionally repeated some of our songs from last week to encourage learning in a familiar environment. This week I noticed a wonderful amount of singing coming from the children. They were happy to sing along with the melody and form of the songs that we had practiced previously and are now beginning to incorporate movement and dance too.

We have been working on body awareness with our body pitch songs in all of our sessions. As the developmental ages increase throughout the morning so do our pitch songs. The nursery is focusing on labelling body parts, the 2-3 year olds are now including counting up to 5 with accurate understanding of body in relation to pitch, and our 4 year olds are now including counting up to 8 and back down again.

The rakau sticks have been a wonderful exploration of hand eye coordination for all ages. The children have been encouraged to offer ideas and we have supported their offerings in song. As the routine has become more familiar we notice more children willing to share their ideas during their music time.

This morning we also encouraged the children in team work, supporting each other – this was shown in simply taking a partner for ‘row row row your boat’ in the nursery, or more complexly in the preschool with sharing their partner’s rakau to create shapes.

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Testimonials

Throughout my course of study in Play Therapy and Musical Play, I have had some of the most memorable and valuable teaching and learning experiences with the children. I have learnt to facilitate their learning in a way that inspires the children’s inner most confidence and creativity. I am more aware of the children’s emotions and have greater rapport with the children because I have learnt to listen, observe and acknowledge them for who they truly are. Julie and Alex provided an encouraging curriculum that supported my journey in Play Therapy and Musical Play. Our skype meetings made me feel confident, and the professional conversations had were inspiring and motivating. This course is a must do for all professionals who engage in early childhood education!

Megan Manson, Primary School Teacher, Melbourne
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