From July 25 to July 29, 2018, the city of New Orleans—always up for a party—was brimming with even more music than usual. That’s because more than 250+ Kindermusik educators gathered at Loyola University to sing, dance, and celebrate their shared passion for enriching children’s lives through music. The occasion? The 40th Anniversary Kindermusik Educator Conference—three jam-packed days of bonding and professional development for Kindermusik’s remarkable community of licensed educators.
It’s summer! Time to kick off your shoes, feel the grass beneath your toes, bury your feet in the sand, and do the scorched-foot tiptoe-dance on your way into the pool.
As the weather heats up and boots get shoved to the backs of closets, those pale feet that only a short time ago were in socks and closed shoes suddenly emerge on the scene, sporting new pedicures and refusing to be constrained by more than a flip-flop. For kids, running around with nothing but dirt, rocks, and grass underfoot is a time-honored summer tradition; the extra callouses and scrapes are just a small price to pay.
Water slide, playground slide, Slip N Slide…nothing more perfectly conjures the feeling of summer fun and freedom. The smiles, the giggles, the breeze whipping through wild hair…
But for some parents, summer slide invokes less positive feelings. That’s because the term refers to the dreaded loss of school-based learning that occurs from the end of one school year to the beginning of the next. The phenomenon has led to calls for year-round schooling and intensive summer educational programs to combat the effects of this particular (and decidedly less delightful) slide.
But before we get all hot and bothered, let’s take a look at the facts.
As July 4th approaches, and Americans prepare to celebrate the red, white, and blue, those of us at Kindermusik are pondering independence—our country’s, certainly, but also our children’s independence. (We can’t really help it; we’re all about die kinder.) Most parents would agree that independence is vitally important to cultivate in children. After all, isn’t the goal of parenting to produce a fully realized human—someone who can function and thrive independently in the world?
What Is Emotional Intelligence?
Since 1990, Americans have been keenly interested in “emotional intelligence.” That’s the year the term was coined by Peter Salovey and John D. Mayer, who claimed that “the ability to monitor one’s own and others’ feelings and emotions, to discriminate among them, and to use this information to guide one’s thinking and action” was vital not only to a person’s wellness but also to his or her ability to succeed in life.
There are two dates on our calendar that celebrate parents, but one seems to get far more attention than the other. While Mother’s Day arrives with flowers, fanfare, and marketing campaigns galore, Father’s Day seems to get short shrift.
If you’ve ever thought seriously about teaching children’s music-and-movement classes, or have pondered the idea of opening your own music studio, you may feel daunted by all there is to consider, manage, and learn. Maybe you’ve put off your dream of becoming a children’s music teacher in favor of something that seems more realistic or practical. After all, building a business, mastering a curriculum, and figuring out how to teach fun, developmentally appropriate children’s music classes to demanding customers (sure, they’re cute, but kids can be tough!) is no small task.
Kindermusik is thrilled to be presenting at the 45th Annual National Head Start Association (NHSA) Conference and Expo in Anaheim, California, from April 23-27, 2018. We’ll be sharing our expertise on all things music and movement in four fantastic sessions. We hope to see you there, but if you can’t make it, here’s a sneak peek at some of what we’ll be talking (and singing!) about: Continue reading “NHSA Preview: Using Music Rituals to Create Calm”
Things are happening at Eagle Mountain Elementary School in Forthworth, Texas. They are happening on the playground and in the classrooms, and believe it or not, they are connected. Recently, the school tripled the amount of recess time the students received and the results have been amazing. We have talked about the importance of play on this blog in the past. It looks like Eagle Mountain has discovered play’s importance in practice.
Mental health – thankfully, in recent years, it has become more acceptable to talk about it in public. The stigma of dealing with a mental health issue lessens with each day that passes. This is a good thing.
As it turns out, singing in groups has a very strong impact on mental health. Without question, we are not implying that singing is a replacement for seeking help from mental health professionals. Rather, we seek to simply highlight the positive effects this activity can have, and they are numerous. Let’s explore them together.