A Musical Observation – Liz Townshend

In the babies’ class I observed how focused each of the babies were and how they had beautiful reactions to the clown. They are often much more interested in the face of the teacher bringing it round than the older children who tend to look directly at the clown.

Here is a class of babies who have been attending music for a term and a half. Their understanding of the routines, anticipation of songs and singing is really developing. I observed Elijah saying stop and often a fraction earlier than it was sung. Suggesting he was well aware of where it came in the song.

It was lovely to see parents in tune with their baby’s needs. Some babies were ok with more vigorous bouncing. Some bounced their babies facing them for reassurance and connection. This was great for the new ones to the class to have eye contact with Mummy. Some required gentler bouncing.

During the rainbow ring Julie quickly changed the words of the song to fit the child’s actions so the song became a moment by moment narrative about what the child was doing.Here you can see the babies turn at the sound of their name being sung and responding by repeating the action.

During the maracas section the babies were vocalizing lots and exploring the ranges of their voices from high to low and the different sounds they can make. Each was aware when the parents were copying their sounds and thus a turn taking began and this encouraged the babies even more. I noted that the babies would often sing and shake their maracas to the same rhythmical pattern as their singing. Eg. “Ah ah ah’ shake, shake, shake. During this time Elijah took the maraca that Julie usually uses and was leading at front.

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During the Bubbles I noted that the babies are really following what others are doing. There was a real sense of community and confidence as they crawled in together. Babies with heads touching in the middle as they touched the bubbles that had fallen to the ground.

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Their mothers loved watching this and the sense of pride was so evident.

During the second class we were treated to Dacy dancing. Here we could see the “proud performer” as he was walking around dancing. Then after a suitable period of time Julie sung the next instruction (time for bouncingx2) and Dacy was able to listen to that instruction and went straight back to his mother.

It was very evident from watching this class that after 1 year in our programme these children were well able to do some actions, sing the songs, follow instructions and routines in the programme.

An Observation by Liz Townshend- Musical Play Tutor