Music to spark a better life for older adults and preschoolers

Posts tagged ‘Holidays’

Rounds Resounding

A homemade merry-go-round.

Image via Wikipedia

Yes, there is a “Rounds Resounding Day”. In fact, it is TODAY! Let’s celebrate with a round or two! They are a musical thing to do for fun.  Rounds are great whether you are young or old to (1) use and develop listening skills (am I singing as loud as those around me, am I in tune), (2) learn to sing harmony, and (3) to develop independence in singing a part.

Here is a starter list to get you going:

  • Row, Row, Row Your Boat
  • Make New Friends
  • Dona Nobis Pacem
  • Hey, Ho, Nobody Home
  • Oh, How Lovely Is the Evening
  • Shalom Chaverim
  • Sing, Sing Together
  • I Love the Flowers
  • Hear the Lively Song of the Frogs

What is your favorite round? If it isn’t listed here, please post it in the comments!

Singable Books: Patriotic

A child reading in Brookline Booksmith, an ind...

Image via Wikipedia

I grew up in a household of readers. We were required to read each day as children – especially during the summer. Those frequent trips to the library have resulted in a lifetime of reading. During my sessions, I love to share singable books.  This post is the first in a series.

Today’s books give a nod to the many US patriotic holidays that happen during the summer months. Published by Picture Window Books and illustrated by Todd Ouren, I have used these resources with a variety of younger children. The songs include:

  • America the Beautiful
  • America
  • The Star Spangled Banner
  • When Johnny Comes Marching Home
  • Yankee Doodle
  • You’re a Grand Old Flag

Watch this to learn more about the books. 

Be watching for future singable books. In the mean time here are a few others:

Happy Birthday, Queen Elizabeth!

HM Queen Elizabeth II, Queen of the United Kin...

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I love to find reasons to celebrate and to add something special to a day. And the official birthday of the Queen (June 13th) is no exception. In my days employed as an Activity Director in long-term care (both assisted living and skilled nursing facilities), this was a fun way to interject the afternoon snack time into an event.

We general planned an afternoon tea. Prior to the event a cooking group might prepare scones and finger sandwiches. I would gather trivia about the royal family. Much of that information was available through resources including Creative Forecasting and Activity Connections often in trivia form.  At times, some of the residents had visited England and would share their memories of the country.

Music was also included and here are just a few items:

  • God Save the Queen – We would then discusses “America” and our country’s ties to Britain.
  • Happy Birthday
  • Some Day My Prince will Come  – Royal wedding easily fit into a conversation after this one.
  • Lavender Blue – What moments in life have you felt like royalty or very special?
  • Jerusalem (for those who don’t know this one, see this YouTube video as has lyrics printed in the comments).

Enjoy the official birthday of the Queen!

Do-Dah Day

Best Viewed Large

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June 4th is Do-Dah Day – A Salute to Silliness. No, I’m not making it up. It really is Do-Dah Day. So here are a few songs that might be fun to sing & share at an intergenerational Do-Day Day Celebration.

  • Camp Town Races (For the pleasure of singing do-dah!)
  • I’m Being Swallowed by a Boa Constrictor
  • There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly
  • Mairzy Doats
  • Down By the Bay
  • Father Abraham Had Seven Sons
  • Skinamarinky Dinky Dink
  • I’m a Nut
  • Ragtime Cowboy Joe
  • I’m Going Crazy
  • I’m a Little Piece of Tin
  • There’s a Hole in the Bottom of the Sea
  • There was a Crooked Man
  • On Top of Spaghetti
  • Flying Purple People Eater

Children’s Songs for Father’s Day

LauderdaleGrandfatherGrandson1967

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Father’s Day is coming. Here are some songs children can sing about men. In fact it might  be fun to sing them with fathers, uncles, and grandfathers…

  • This Old Man
  • When I First Came to this Land
  • Hush Little Baby
  • Billy Boy
  • Farmer in the Dell
  • Waltzing Matilda
  • Yankee Doodle
  • Father Abraham Had Seven Sons
  • Noble Duke of York
  • Michael Finnegan
  • John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt
  • Old Joe Clark
  • Old Mac Donald

Men in Song

The MICE Singers

Image via Wikipedia

June is International Men’s Month and Father’s Day in the US is June 19th. Residents at the local Sterling House have asked me to share songs about men during June. A few I will be sharing are:

What would you add to the list? If you work with a different Age group, I recommend checking out Green Book of Song. It is well worth the money for the resource assistance they offer.

May Resources

Chiot's Run 2011 Calendar

Image by Chiot's Run via Flickr

The month of May is filled with holidays and events for many people. Here are some resources on this blog for a handful of them:

May Day:

Cinco de Mayo:

Mother’s Day:

Older American’s Month:

Older Americans Month Songs

Old man

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May is designated as Older Americans Month. This year’s theme is: Older Americans: Connecting Community.  According to the US Administration on Aging, the theme:

“pays homage to the many ways in which older adults bring inspiration and continuity to the fabric of our communities, and highlights how technology is helping older Americans live longer, healthier, and more engaged lives.”

Music can inspire us. Music can engage us. And, music can connect people. Thus, it seems fitting to take  time to share some songs about “old” things that seniors might sing and enjoy. Grab the family and take some time to share these or other music with an older friend. You’ll be glad you did!

I’ll Love You for Always

Love You Forever

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In a recent post, I asked about favorite children’s books that can be sung. “Love You Forever” by Robert Munsch is one of my favorites. When my daughter was in second grade, her grade level held a Mother’s Day Tea and  presented a reading of the book with the refrain sung by the children. I can say there were a lot of tissues used in that short presentation. It is still brings a smile to my face when I see this book. As it talks about love of a parent and child, it is one that is easy to relate with whether you are young or you are old. Why not share it with a child?

Singalong about Ladies

Grandma Cuts Loose

Image by diver227 via Flickr

Mother’s Day for older adults can be an emotionally packed day. The fact that mothers, sisters, children have passed can add a feeling of loss to the day. The sudden influx of cards and flowers brings joy for some while others look on feeling forgotten or less loved. These feelings are not just limited to the women, the men share them, too!

As an activity staff member in the various levels of care, I tried to find ways to honor and acknowledge the emotions of Mother’s Day along with providing stability. That and  Joan Shaw’s “The Joy of Music in Maturity” lead me to a month of singalongs with womens names. In other words, I add more of the names and songs about women throughout the month but switch my emphasis to almost exclusive use of these songs the week leading up to Mother’s Day. Here are a few of the songs I have handy during the month:

There are so many name songs, I’ll stop here. Knowing that some names (example – Albina) don’t show up in songs, I may a song like “Mary” and we insert names of those in the group along with their nicknames. Do you have other favorite songs about women? I’d love to learn what they are, so please share them in the comments below!

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