COMING VERY SOON!
Singing and Signing from A – Z
Singing songs will always play a role in young children’s education. Music and movement makes our brain active and is an effective cognitive strategy to (1) strengthen learning, (2) improve memory and retrieval, and (3) enhance learner motivation and morale (Jenson, 2005). Listening to music causes our brain to release dopamine which is known as a feel good chemical. It causes us to feel emotions like happiness, excitement, and joy… something young children need in this stress-out children’s world. Music stirs our emotions, emotions get our attention and attention leads to learning. Furthermore, the power music allows young children to retain and recall melodies and lyrics (text) which can be used via pocket chart phrases to engage young children in powerful literacy experiences that promote early reading skills (print awareness, phonological awareness, sight word recognition, vocabulary development and fluency).
Sign language is another powerful tool that should be part of early learning instruction. First, sign language is an action that requires movement and movement is good for the brain. Research findings have reported that signing helps improve communication skills and may also increase your students’ vocabulary and language skills. In addition, integrating sign language in your classroom will increase your students early reading skills, due to neural pathways that signing creates. Furthermore, teaching sign language to your young children will also increase their visual attention skills and joint attention skills (Vallotton, 2011). Finally, incorporating sign language along with songs is a form of entertainment that makes the entire learning experience F-U-N, fun!
Developing dual language learners is a benefit for all children and adults…cognitively, socially, and economically beneficial. One of the most effective way to teach a second language is through songs. The power that songs have to promote long-term retention while bringing joy to learning is a reason why songs are the perfect method to introduce a new language to young children in a non- threatening approach. Music is inviting and encouraging and young children don’t mind taking risk learning a new language especially when they are singing.
Language and music are tied together in brain processing by pitch, rhythm and by symmetrical phrasing. Music can help familiarize students with connections and provides a fun way to acquire a new language (Lake, 2005). Singing songs with cognates while signing makes learning a new language fun and exciting for ALL children.
Dino the dinosaur is a dentist. Dino the dinosaur lives in the desert. Dino the dinosaur has a dollar. Dino the dinosaur plays dominoes.
Dino el dinosaurio es dentista. Dino el dinosaurio vive en el desierto. Dino el dinosaurio tiene un dolar. Dino el dinosaurio juega domino.
(from the recording Alphabet: Singing and Signing A – Z, copyright 2017)
Great rhythmic songs with cognates and fun sign language makes learning one or two languages exciting and easy. The literacy experience is then expanded through the use of pocket chart phrases; pocket chart picture cards to support the the printed word; flash cards of cognates for language development; story picture of the song for classroom discussion with math, science, wellness/nutrition/safety, critical thinking questions questions and phonological / phonemic awareness activities; and a three-in-one take home activities (1st activity) a b/w story picture to color and story-tell and/or sing to their family and the other side (2nd activity) a matching (concentration) game of the cognate words to play with their parent or sibling (3rd activity) a puzzle created from the cut-out concentration game.
Stay tuned for this wonderful program…sorry for the delay.