Having lived in the Panola area for almost 29 years and being a confirmed bookaholic, I enjoy dropping by the Salem-Panola branch of the DeKalb County Public Library system. The librarians are all well-known to our family and we consider them all good friends. They are always interested in our family and how we are doing, making suggestions for new authors and books that we might find interesting.
On Tuesday morning, I got an opportunity to give them something back – a taste of Kindermusik for the patrons of the Salem-Panola library. Although our classes are normally restricted in size to facilitate learning, we lifted that restriction somewhat to include everyone who was interested – a nice, large group of children!
We started off with a Welcome song – “Ahoy there, Mates!” – in honor of being at the beach. Then we thought about different things we can do at the beach – dig in the sand, swim in the water, looking for seashells, watching for turtles – suggestions were coming from all over the group.
Next, we practiced rowing our boats -by ourselves, with our moms, with our friends! And we decided that each one of us could say,”I like the beach!” 🙂 Then we “climbed” into a sailing boat next and went sailing over the waves. Some of the boys decided they wanted to go fishing, instead!
It’s hard to resist the music of “Si Fe’s” – The Octopus. With streamers and energy, we had octopuses all over the place! We had such a good time doing this, we decided to go “Over the Waves” and create the ocean right there – in the children’s section of Salem-Panola library!
Our noise level as well as our energy level needed to come down at this point; we had had so much fun with the waves and the beach balls.
In Kindermusik classes, especially for the youngest children in Village classes, there is an important component known as quiet time or rocking time. It gives the parent and child an opportunity to slow down, relax, and just enjoy being together as a family unit. More importantly, it also stimulates the child’s vestibular system – the balance system within the brain – that provides such an important function as he or she grows and develops. And it all is enhanced simply by sitting and rocking together – today to a lovely song titled “The Water is Wide.”
Right after this, we listened to sounds of the whales, calling to each other and decided that it’s really a neat thing to listen to! Then we decided to become whales ourselves!
We decided to trade our humongous scarves for smaller ones and practiced “going over, going under, stand at attention – like a soldier, with a one-two-three!”
Our story book for this week was “Ten Little Fish” by Audrey Wood. It’s a very colorful, predictable book that children love to read over and over again.
After this, we got to make our own shakers to take home and enjoy.
Then we took our shakers and danced *calypso* to “Mary Ann” all over and around the children’s area of Salem-Panola library! Our last activity was the “Sailor’s Jig,” a circle dance that went around and around, in and out, and we loved every minute of it!
As we ended our time together, I shared with the moms something most, if not all, of them knew – that children thrive on routine and structure. Each Kindermusik class always begins with a welcome song and ends with a goodbye song to give the children the welcome reassurance that it’s just like they remembered.
All in all, everyone had, I think, a great day at the beach at Salem-Panola!