Monday, October 31, 2011

The Give-away Winners are......

Congratulations to "anonymous" (I have your email address, thanks) for winning the Disney CD, Velika for winning the Eyre book and Greg for winning the guitar lullabies CD.  I'll send your email addresses to the publishers.

I still have several more items to give away, so stay turned.....keep checking my blog!

Thanks for reading!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Parenting Tip - BRR (Bedtime Reminiscence Routine)

My daughter in law told me something she does with my 17 month old grandson as part of his bedtime routine.  As she rocks him in the rocking chair, she goes over all the events of the day.  She enumerates what he ate for breakfast and how he played with his toys.  She mentions his nap time and lunch and anything else they did during the day.  Then she talks about when Daddy came home and they ate dinner, and how Daddy played with him and put his pajamas on. She said she discovered that when she does this and then puts him in his crib, he lays there peacefully without fussing.  But if she doesn’t go over the day’s routine, he seems to always cry when she puts him in bed and it takes longer for him to settle down.  Interesting, isn’t it?

 

I wonder if my daughter in law has counted up all the valuable skills she is teaching my grandson.  She is helping him learn about time value, and chronological order, about sequencing and prepositions like before and after.  She is teaching him science and astronomy as she talks about the sun shining during the day and the moon coming out at night, about climate and weather when she talks about the rain and the wind.  She’s teaching the days of the week.  She’s increasing his vocabulary as she uses adjectives to describe the soft fur on the bunny and the delicious taste of applesauce.

 

 I've been learning about autistic children and how they need structure and routine to their day. They even benefit from visual sequencing of their daily activities.  When their routine is changed or they are confused about what is happening, then a major meltdown can ensue.  My grandson is not autistic but he is approaching his “terrific twos” and anything that can help in making his life be more structured and less frustrating is good for not only him, but Mom too.

 

Wow. Who would have thought so much learning could come from 3 minutes of bedtime reminiscing?

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Parenting Tip -No Fuss Hair Do Idea



Here's a great idea I saw my daughter do
when I visited her family last week.

 

While her daughters were eating breakfast, she combed and braided their hair.  Now this is a good idea, but she took a good idea and made it a GREAT idea.  She hated to try and figure out every morning how to do her two daughter’s hair, so she made photograph books that contained pictures of hairstyles from blogs she liked.  

 

 

 

 She also had a basket that contained everything she needed like combs, brush, rubberbands, etc. 

 

 In the basket was the “magic hairbrush”.  That’s what she called it.  Actually it is a brush that contains two different sizes of bristles and can brush through tangles “magically”.  It’s the truth—my granddaughters didn’t wince one time. She said it’s kind of expensive but so worth the money.    

    

So in about 4 minutes she had both hairdos done and the girls were ready to go to the bus stop. 
No fuss, no muss!  

 
Do you have any great time saving ideas to share?

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

A Give-Away is Here!

I've been really behind in giving away some great CDs and a book.  So here's your chance to win a free prize.

Jenny Oaks Baker has come out with another fun CD called "Wish Upon a Star".  This CD is a tribute to the "Music of Walt Disney" and has some gorgeous orchestrated renditions of favorites like Colors of the Wind, Beauty and the Beast, A Dream is a Wish....and lots more.

Another CD   I'm giving away is "Lullaby Christmas".  I previously gave away one of the Daddy Plays Cds a few months ago called "Guitar Lullabies".  He does another great job of playing acoustic guitar with beautiful Christmas music that will have your child sleeping and dreaming sweet dreams.



The book I'm giving away is Linda Eyre and Shawni Eyre Pothier's "A Mother's Book of Secrets".  This is a mother-daughter team who write like they "have been there and are doing it now".  They share great thoughts and ideas that will lift and inspire you and encourage you to keep on trying.

I have lots more CDs and DVDs to share so keep reading my blog.  If you would like to enter this giveaway, leave me a comment.  Please be sure I have your email address, too.



Giveaway closes on Monday, Oct 31.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Music Tip -Ostinato

I’ve been teaching general music at school for 11 years.  Every year we talk about what an ostinato is and every year no one can remember from one week to the next what it is.  This always amazes and perplexes me because we play simple ostinatos on nonpitched and pitched instruments all the time as we use them to accompany chants and songs.

I decided that it is not that my students are dumb—it’s ME.  Evidently I’m not teaching the definition of an ostinato correctly. So I thought back to a brain research class I took and decided I need to teach the definition in a catchy, memorable way.  I decided to put the definition to a catchy tune. Here is what I came up with:
video


Did you notice the melody was the Hallelujah Chorus.  Thanks, Handel.  BTW, the kids are standing backwards so I could maintain their privacy on the internet.

I taught the song to the 3rd-6th graders and then had them go outside and sing it to the universe.  They looked at me like I was crazy but loved the idea of leaving the classroom.  We also walked down the sidewalk and sang it to the neighbors’ homes across the street from the school. At that point the students KNEW I was crazy.  But guess what?  Three weeks later, when I asked what an ostinato was, every child raised his arm and knew the answer.  And we all burst out singing,
    “Ostinato, ostinato, repeated pattern, repeated pattern”……….

Do you have something you are trying to teach your child at home?  Something he seems to never remember?  Put it to a song, make it silly and enjoy watching the astounding magic that will take place.

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