This post is part of part of the PhD in Parenting Carnival of Play From April 1st to April 15th. Pop on over and find some other great play posts. Welcome to those that popped over.
A friend swore blind that her unborn baby recognized the theme to Eastenders. The wiggling baby would then be absolutely still and if the baby wasn’t moving would start kicking.
Mothers who sing know how even the most upset babies are quiet and listening. What baby doesn’t like to be rocked? Sling mammas will testify to that. Kids love music and movement- dance. It seems fundamental to their core. My toddler has just learnt the joys of dance and can be seen bopping whenever a new beat starts. It could be a jingle on the TV or Kid’s nursery rhyme CD or music for Mummy or Daddy. There he is bending his knees; up and down and swaying almost to falling over. Not a bad feat for the little guy who is just mastering walking.
He has that big grin on his face. It’s a great chance for self expression and creativity. He’s learning about how his body works and picks himself off the ground when an enthusiastic sway and swing lands him there. We try different action songs but we come back to the ones that use the whole body. ” Hokey cookey” “Row row row your boat” “One finger, one thumb keep moving” He likes the repetition and the movement. Besides it makes him feel better.
You really can’t be sad dancing. Try it!
Dancing is good for the grey matter too. Children learn by doing and movement is one of the main ways they learn about themselves and their world. The control of muscles, posture and balance help with the simplest activities of sitting still.
My older child makes up routines for us to follow after we’ve been marching around to “Oh the Grand old duke of York” He gets his inspiration there and after a few weeks of Boogie Beebies in the Autumn. He learns and so do we, after a fashion, to follow instructions and sequencing skills needed when he’s older.
Dancing promotes memory as he’s quick to tell me “No! no! no!” when I march instead of clap my hands. I guess my memory is not so good. We do our dancing at home. Many choose the dance classes route. There are so many different types of dance available now and accredited dance teachers empower boys and girls to really express themselves.
Dance isn’t about Ballet and strict routines anymore?
Dances you can do
- expose babies to different types of music.
- Dance and sway around your room with them in your arms. Invigorating for both of you. Also a really good mind lifter.
- Jump and hop in time to the beat with your toddler just like you used to-in the olden days.
- A favorite oldie but goodie. Get your child to stand on your toes and you hold their arms with them facing you. You can move shouting out instructions. Lift up your feet and move together.
- Older children may like dance with props; ribbons, musical instruments or as animals (stomping elephant, flying bird, slithering snake.)
- My older son loves Animal Boogie. He sings sometimes and moves like the animals other times.
- Start with an Action songs CD and make up your own routines and actions if you don’t know them.
- Talk about the music and move in that way. Star trek: Next generation theme (Don’t ask!) is a favorite in our house so we get shooting starts and rockets across the room.
- Enroll your child in a dance class. You always feel better after a good boogie.
I found it banished grumpy kids and my tiredness for a little while with a big helping of dance. You’ ll feel heaps better for it and the kids get all those great benefits.
Get actively involved with your kids today. What dance activities do you do?