I like to accompany most activities in life with music. I sing A LOT. It’s just my nature. It’s also my nature to teach and I love teaching music to children. They are so excited about playing piano and learning songs. It is like I am giving them the tools to fly a 747. I sometimes feel that a piano looks like a wonderful spaceship to kids (and maybe to everyone). All those buttons and pedals – Come ON! Fly me To The Moon!
Back to today’s tip: Make up new words to songs you know. This is so easy and fun to do. Do it while driving, in the bathtub, on a picnic and in the grocery line! One really fun and funny one is to start with is The Alphabet Song (the traditional one). When you get to the last letter (or word) or each section, instead of singing the letter/word, make a raspberry sound (you know, the sound that comes from putting your tongue between your lips and gently blowing out on a “P” sound, letting your lips flutter in the wind). Let’s try it!
1, 2, ready, go:
Now I know my A… B… PLLTHLTHTHLT!
Next time won’t you sing with PLLTHLTHTHLT!
Isn’t that fun and funny? I sing it with my kids and I did it at a Didi Pop Show last night…kids love it! I mean they LAUGH HARD!
You may be thinking, “OK Didi Pop, this sounds fun, but what exactly does that teach?”
Firstly, it teaches the alphabet in a more cognitive way. Kids are not simply singing what they have memorized (a series of sounds accompanied by melody), they are thinking and processing about what comes next. They are also learning breathing technique (it takes a different kind of air flow to create the raspberries) and therefore, musical phrasing. It teaches creativity (they learn that words and sounds can be substituted for other words/sounds) and empowers children around music and language (Yes! There are no rules! Music and language are tools that can be altered according to one’s mood!). It also inspires general silliness and family FUN. I mean, who doesn’t want to see their grandma singing:
And here is my ABC song for you to enjoy!