I love the summertime, especially being out enjoying the weather. I DON’T want to be stuck inside working more than necessary, so when I’m planning music therapy sessions or music classes during these long and lazy days of summer, I try to find something fun, familiar, easy to learn, and of course, goal-oriented.
Some of the goals addressed in these songs:
- Increase verbalization
- Improve object identification
- Improve fine and gross motor skills
- Improve creative thinking
- Increase directional awareness
- Increase socialization through peer interaction
“Up on Your Feet” is a rewritten version of “Day-O”, adapted to be a movement song. It is so tropical and fun, which makes it perfect for summer! Each verse instructs the participants to move like different plants and animals in the jungle.
In the past, I’ve adapted “Up on Your Feet” to include certain types of animals or plants to match a theme, such as the ocean, or the forest. I always encourage my kiddos to think of which animals live in certain climates, and how they think they would move, which is so much fun and a great exercise in creative thinking.
“Happiness Runs” is such a wonderful song in its original form, but the L&L version is adapted so that there is ample time for children to practice their “b” sounds as they sing along. The verses are simple enough that young children can understand their meaning, while still retaining the original sentiment of the song.
“Happiness Runs” has been a great conversation starter for my clients and students, and usually gets my kiddos chatting about ice cream, hugs, going to school, and so many other things that bring them happiness. It’s also just super cute to hear what makes children happy, and I love hearing them share.
Of course, either song can be paired with sign language or visual aides so that children can clearly make connections between the lyrics and the meaning of the words. I find that using either sign language or visual aides is a great way to introduce the songs to my clients and students, and then I’m able to fade those visual cues as the children become more familiar with the songs or topics.
Both of these familiar yet goal-oriented songs have allowed me to enjoy more sunshine, while also being fully prepared for my music therapy sessions and music classes. These songs are effective, so functional, and allow me to plan my summer sessions more efficiently! How could I ask for more?
Let me know in the comments below: which familiar songs have you adapted for your music therapy sessions or music classes?
You can listen to all of these songs in their entirety right here. Lyrics, chords, mp3, and instrumental track for these original songs are available for download. As is the case for all Listen & Learn Music creations, we invite you to adapt these songs as needed to best serve your students and/or clients.