Music is an important part of a child’s life, both before and after birth. From the womb to the classroom, music has the power to shape a child’s development and growth.
Before birth, music has the power to soothe and calm a baby. Studies have shown that babies in the womb can recognize and respond to music. Music can help to create a positive environment for the baby, and even help to stimulate brain development. Music can also be used to help pregnant mothers relax and reduce stress.
After birth, music has the power to bring joy and happiness to a child’s life. Music can be used to help children learn and express themselves. It can also help children to develop their language and communication skills. Music can even help to build social skills, as children can learn to interact with each other through music.
Montessori music activities are designed to be hands-on and interactive, allowing children to explore music through experimentation and play. Activities often involve singing, playing instruments, and creating music with everyday objects. These activities are designed to help children develop their musical skills, such as rhythm, pitch, and melody. Additionally, Montessori music activities can help children develop their language and communication skills, as well as their creativity and imagination.
Music is an important part of the Montessori educational philosophy, as it helps children develop their musical skills in a fun and engaging way.
What place movement songs take in a Montessori environment
Movement songs play an important role in Montessori education. These songs help to create a sense of community and belonging, as well as to encourage physical activity and exploration. Through music and dancing, children are able to express themselves and explore their environment.
Movement songs are used to introduce children to physical activities. They are often used to introduce a new activity or to help children learn a new skill. These songs help to keep children engaged and motivated during the activity. They also help to create a positive atmosphere and can be used to encourage children to take part in activities.
Movement songs are also used to help children learn about the world around them. They can be used to teach children about different cultures, animals, and plants. Through the use of music, children can explore different cultures and learn more about their own. Music can also be used to help children understand the importance of physical activity and to help them develop a sense of self-confidence.
Preschool movement songs
- March and play the drum
To teach a child to march and play the drum, start by teaching them to march to a steady beat. Have them move to the tempo of a drum, starting with a slow beat and gradually increasing the speed. Incorporate the drum into the music making of the class by assigning a group of children to play on specific beats. Try using hula hoops or buckets and have them move in response to the form of the music. Encourage them to create their own musical instruments, like a maraca, shaker, or drum. Additionally, try repeating “music salad” with varying tempos and incorporate different movements like clapping or stamping.
- Musical squares
To teach a child Musical Squares, begin by having the child stand in the center of a square with four corners. With music playing in the background, have the child move to each corner of the square one at a time in time with the music. For example, the child can march in place at each corner, move their arms in circles, or hop on one foot. Once the child has reached each corner, move on to the next musical squares game. The next game could involve having the child follow the leader, where the leader moves to each corner in a pattern, and the child follows. Alternatively, you could have the child form a pattern of their own and the leader follows them. This is a fun and engaging way for children to learn about movement and music.
- Balance practice
Balance practice can be taught by having the child walk along a line of painter's tape while listening to calming music. This activity requires the child to maintain their balance while walking, which will help them to develop their gross motor skills.
- Go for a listening walk
Listening to music while going for a walk can help a child's development by encouraging movement, carving neural pathways, reducing stress and anxiety, strengthening the bond between parent and child, introducing music, and improving coordination and movement control. Additionally, music can assist in the development of both fine and gross motor skills.
- Body part dancing
To help a child learn how to freely move their body part while dancing, create a musical rhythm using action verb flashcards and draw them out of a hat. Call out a body part and start the music, and have the child make that body part move to the music. Encourage creativity by having them participate in musical activities and activities of movement.
- Musical chairs
To teach children how to play Musical Chairs, set up chairs (one less than the total number of children) in a line or a circle. Start the music and have the children move around the chairs while the music plays. When the music stops, each child must sit in a chair. The last person standing without a chair is eliminated. Once a person is out, remove a chair and start the music again. Repeat this process until there is one winner. Require the children to perform an action to the music for each round to reinforce steady beat and rhythm.
- Listen and walk to the beat
Teach children to listen and walk to the beat during dance songs by playing recordings of quality music with an even, steady beat and having them move, clap, tap, or hit an instrument to the beat. Begin with simple exercises such as marching, clapping, and jumping in time to the beat before introducing more complex rhythms. Provide children with necessary time to become familiar with the rhythm by repeating it three times before introducing a different one. Utilize pre-reading skills such as rhyming, repetition, storytelling, and voice/body expression to help them gain a better understanding of the music. Finally, use action songs from different albums for warm-up, cool-down, following directions, dancing, fitness, and games.
Preschool activities songs
- Dance with scarves
Dancing with scarves and music can help children develop their minds as well as their fine and gross motor skills in a fun and engaging way. This activity encourages kids to use their hearing, sight, and touch to explore the music and movements. It helps build positive sensory-motor skills by allowing them to feel the texture of the scarf, and encourages creativity and coordination as they swing it, dance, leap, run, twirl, spin, gallop, jump, throw, and catch.
- Do the plate dance
This activity is similar to the previous one described. Basically, you give each of the children two paper plates (or real plates, or plastic ones, whatever you feel like), put some music on, and create a dance using the plates as props.
- Animal magic
Animal magic activity is a fun way to learn about animals, the sounds they make and how they move. You can either recreate the sound of an animal and ask a child to show its movement and vice versa, but additionally ask a little one to name the animal as well. Another way to play this game is to find the actual sounds animals make after recalling the name of the animal and let the child perform the creature’s movement.
- Floor drawing
Floor drawing with music is a great Montessori activity for children. It promotes creative expression and can help to develop fine and gross motor skills. To get started, draw lines on the floor with tape and provide children with large pieces of paper. Encourage them to draw with large markers or crayons, listening to music as they do. Observe how they express themselves through their drawings and how their movements change with different kinds of music. Afterward, discuss their artwork and feelings with the group. This activity can help to foster communication, creativity, and self-expression.
- Musical art
It’s almost similar to the floor drawing, but in case of musical art children learn to explore their emotions while listening to specific kinds of music through drawing what they feel. After the painting is ready, you can ask them to define what they have felt and what the picture means to them.
- Feather dance
To teach a child a Feather Dance, you can use brightly coloured craft feathers, pop on some music and encourage movement as they keep their feather in the air by blowing it. You can also add rhythmic music to develop their sense of time as they explore this way of moving. Finally, you can strengthen their control over their movements by having them move their feathers to the beat of a song.
- Do the Hokey Cokey
To teach kids the Hokey Cokey, gather them in a circle and explain that each child will have a colored square. Then, have them take turns singing the Hokey Cokey song while they put their hand or legs "in" and "out" while singing the appropriate verse. Sing the song with the corresponding body part and have them do the actions. Provide each student with a letter-sound card and review the Hokey Cokey song and dance with them.
- We're Going on a Bear Hunt
Playing musical activity We're Going on a Bear Hunt with children can be a fun and engaging experience. Start by allocating a different sound effect to each child and then practice the story together. Let the children add in the sound effects at the right moments. Suggestions for sound effects include broom brushing on concrete for Swishy Swashy, shaking a large plastic bottle half filled with water for Spishy Sploshy, making a gloop from flour and water paste and putting it in a large empty biscuit tin or paint tin for Squelch Squerch, experimenting with wooden sticks or spoons on railings or banisters or the legs of a chair for Stumble Trip, and blowing over the neck of a empty glass bottle for Whoo-Woo Whoo-Woo. Additionally, incorporate gross motor agility and muscle strength activities by playing a 5 Little Bears finger-rhyme and maybe even making an obstacle course.
- Get bouncy
In order to perform this activity, you will need something more than just a child and rhythmical music. Ready for this? It is a bouncy ball! Turn on the music and let children jump and bounce with the balls in accordance with the beats. To make this activity even more interesting, you can set up the start and finish lines and the first kiddo to reach the end will be the winner.
- Quiet and loud
For this Montessori music activity, you will need a pair of sand blocks. With their help you can introduce children to the concepts of loud and quiet sounds. For example, at first you will need to rub sand blocks together and say “Quiet”. Then tap sand blocks together and say “Loud”. After that, use the question “Am I playing quiet or loud?” while tapping or rubbing the sand blocks together. The final point in this activity is to ask children in which way you have played the sand blocks - the quiet or loud one.
- Peter and the Wolf
This one is an awesome way to introduce children to storytelling and classical music, especially if you choose a version played by the London Philharmonic Orchestra. We add this as an activity song as there are so many things which can be performed with this specific song. For example, you can add role play, having a narrator and actors and live through the story of Peter and the Wolf.
Preschool dancing songs
- Shake it out!
Shake it Out is a fun original body parts action song to get children up and moving! The little one can learn body parts and get some exercise in this fun dance body parts song.
- Five Little Ducks
The song "Five Little Ducks" can be used to teach kids to dance with their hands like ducks. As they sing the song, they can flap their hands like wings and move their arms and legs in time with the music. At the end of the song, they can do a special duck dance move, such as waddling in a circle or making a quacking sound. Learning the dance to this song can be a great way to get kids moving and having fun.
- Sleeping bunnies
Teaching children to dance the "Sleeping Bunnies" nursery rhyme is a fun and creative activity. It involves having children hop around like bunnies while singing the lyrics to the song. It is a great way to help children develop their coordination and rhythm, as well as improve their memorization skills.
- Heads, Shoulders, Knees and Toes
To teach a child Heads, Shoulders, Knees and Toes, have them stand up and follow along with you as you touch each part of your body with both hands in time with the song. Start off slowly and progress to faster and faster verses, making the gestures more frantic and fun. To reinforce the learning, provide flashcards of the vocab and have the students touch their part of the body when each flashcard is revealed. You can also play “Simon Says” and have the students touch the correct body part as you sing the song. Finally, provide worksheets for homework to reinforce the learning.
- The Grand Old Duke of York
The Noble Duke of York is a great song for young children as it encourages them to practice different skills in creative dance. This song can either be considered as one to learn rhyming or to have a dance staged to it. You can think of any movement to accompany each line of the text. For example, create a circle and start with stepping in four and clapping on four then move back on the count of four as well, add turning around within seven counts and clapping again on the eighth. Have it done repeatedly.
This article provides a descriptive overview of Montessori music and movement activities. We have discussed what these activities are, why they are important for child development and how they involve group participation as well as the direct instructions on how to perform each of them. So now, having this list of activities, you can always come back to look through and find something to do with your little one at home.