Based in San Francisco, iteachkids.org is an early childhood education blog by Tiva Lee Samaru & Randa Atkins. Their posts explore; through videos and other resources - original early childhood education curricula and ideas for enrichment classes, as well as, tips and tricks for classroom management and general childcare.

Baby Sounds

Baby Sounds

Babies make so many interesting sounds.

Granted, it's because they have not yet grasped language in terms of proper words and sentence structure, so consonant and vowel sounds - baby babble as it is commonly called - are typically used as a way of exploring speech and making attempts at communicating, and in some cases informing. And, many of these sounds are well understood by the older humans around them, because they are associated with certain emotions or behavioral patterns. There are other sounds, to which onomatopoeias apply. Sounds like "WAH", for when a baby is crying. These types of sounds are not necessarily baby babble, merely a word used to describe the sound of something, in this case, the sound of crying.

After putting a little more thought into baby sounds, it seemed like a great foundation for a music activity, after all, music is made up of different types of sounds. Why baby sounds? Well, because we are still exploring our family theme, and like we said in one of our previous blog posts, a family is the culmination of babies. Babies are an integral part of a family and by extension family-themed activities.

The following is a vocal warm-up activity that exposes children to two of the five vowels used in singing - "AH" and "OO". The focus of this activity is to help children understand the physicality -as it relates to the positioning of the mouth and tongue - when singing these vowel sounds.

How did it go?

Vocal warm-ups are always a nice change. Sometimes children's music classes can be so superficial, with rhymes and songs that don't really delve into music theory but are merely used for the purpose of entertainment and familiarity. But, when activities can do more than that, a wider field to play upon exists, and an opportunity to change the pace of your class or introduce deeper lessons comes into the light. This is the case with this activity. Our students loved it and caught on quickly, and it set the pace for the rest of the class. Teaching children about their voice, the sounds it can make, and how to access and use those sounds, is always a vital lesson - especially if you have any aspiring musicians or singers in your class.

Diversify this activity by introducing the concept of volume. Play around with loud and quiet tones, and pay attention to what happens both vocally and with their bodies, then use your findings to teach them about volume control.


Take a look!

Interested in learning this warm-up? Then watch the video!

Sing Those Vowels,

Tiva & Randa

Falling Down

Falling Down

Talking

Talking