Child’s Play and Early Intervention
“The Wheels on the Bus go round and round, round and round…..”
In Part I of this series on Early Intervention, we focused on the importance of play in helping a child develop a variety of motor and language skills. In Part II, Lynne Kolodziej, a teli Developmental Specialist for over 10 years, shares the value of music in a child’s development. You know the songs: “The Wheels on the Bus” or “The Hokey Pokey” over and over again! You may not be able to get those songs out of you head , but trust Lynne when she says they are learning valuable skills!
So the “Wheels on the Bus” is more than a silly song?
Most definitely! Another myth busted!! The incorporation of music into Early Intervention therapy has a multitude of benefits for the child as Lynne explains.” Music helps to engage children, they move to the beat, they stand up and dance and in turn work on muscle strength and balance. Learning the words, repeating the verses and exploring rhyming words is a great way to develop their language skills,” notes Lynne. “They also learn a great deal socially as they sing with others or alternate and take turns.”
Early Intervention, music and emotional health
In addition to the functional component of music, there is an emotional component to music that enables parents to use music to help children cope with the unfamiliar. “Visits to the doctors might be a challenge, so often going back to one of their familiar songs such as the “The Wheels on the Bus” can help them to better transition and reduce stress. A favorite of parents is always “The Clean up” song to teach their child social skill as well as responsibility, while a song associated with nap time can trigger a more comforting response for a child. “says Lynne. “Music can serve as a de-stressor for both children and parents. “
As in most cases, with Early Intervention therapy, the goal is to engage both the parent and the child in normal daily activities that reinforce development. Play has a key role in a child’s development and with the parent as the partner in that play, both the child and the parent can enjoy their time together as they play with a purpose! The familiar child’s cry of “Again, again!” is music to our ears!