It feels like only a week ago we were transitioning into the summer swing, sending some of our kids off to camp, changing work schedules to accommodate children at home and adjusting bedtimes so that the moon was out when we closed our eyes.
Now, we are getting ourselves ready as change our schedules back, re-adjust bedtimes and accommodate the emotions that come with going back to school, a fall/winter schedule and possibly different working hours.
This is a perfect time to add music into the routine (assuming you haven't taken our advice yet and added it already), to help your child transition into a new routine and schedule.
In our classrooms we often use transition music for a variety of different timed of day and in our music sessions we are constantly building in musical transitions to make the sessions run more smoothly;
Greetings Songs: Allow ourselves and our friends to adjust to the "next" activity and recognize a change in space and learning. Offering us a clear START.
Goodbye Songs: Allow ourselves to move OUT of our activity and prepare for the next activity and learning experiences. Offering us a clear END.
Instrument Clean-Up Songs: As hard as it is to say goodbye to those instruments, a simple clean-up song will help those tears go away.
So how do we add musical transitions at home?
*Pair a simple melody with a morning schedule and routine; adjusting the words slightly if changed. A super simple piggy-back song like "This is the way we wash our hands" or "ABC's" can help give you a start to creating your own musical routine.
*Pair a song with no words to an activity; when cleaning up a playroom or dinner table, put on a recorded piece (no words) and always use the same one until the routine is set.
*Using a piggyback song to assist in routine changes; In our house, work schedules change again in the winter and we use a simple song to explain that changes to our youngest (3 years old).
For more tips and tricks on using music at home, visit the Developing Melodies Music Therapy Center Blog!
Meryl Brown MM, MT-BC, DT
Owner and Director of Developing Melodies