Have you ever considered that you carry a toolbox as a parent? A toolbox used to be primarily for people of the trades, such as plumbers, mechanics, and electricians, but they are really for anyone who needs more than one tool to get the job done!
At the Centre for Family Literacy, we like to promote the Rhymes Toolbox to the parents in our Rhymes that Bind programs. We advise the parents that they have their own toolboxes and that using their tools can help teach their children language and communication skills.
- The ideal tools for doing this are Voices, Fingers, and Faces
- The Voice tool is great for singing and chanting a wide variety of songs and rhymes
- The Finger tools are perfect for the tickling and body part songs
- The Face tool is the most important tool of them all, as the children will be able to see the exuberant expression on their parent’s face and know that fun is coming
- There are no plug-ins required in this toolbox
Transitioning, routines, and parent/child bonding are perfect times to take full advantage of these tools. The easiest way to transition children through one event to the next is through rhymes, songs, and finger play.
Children flourish with structure, predictability, and connection with their parents. The normal day to day routine may begin with waking up, having breakfast, getting dressed, travelling to daycare, and saying goodbye. Then transitioning home, playing, having dinner then a bath, story time, and bedtime.
The Rhyme Toolbox will help keep things calm and fun in the many other activities that come into your children’s day. A great little tickle song will help transition them whether they are getting dressed in the morning or going with you to get groceries. Here are some fun ones to try:
Pat Your Head
Pat your head
And rub your tummy,
Tickle your knees
And hug your mommy/daddy/caregiver
Here is a great song for transitioning into the car for a ride to the daycare, or anywhere for that matter. It is a body part song and is also perfect for getting into the tub and learning body parts.
Tommy Thumbs are up and Tommy Thumbs are down
Tommy Thumbs are dancing all around the town (dance them to the left and to the right)
Dance them on your shoulders and dance on your head
Dance them on your knees and tuck them into bed. (Fold your arms and tuck thumbs into your hands)
You can repeat this little song changing up the body parts.
Round and Round the Garden
Round and round the garden, I lost my teddy bear,
(using a gentle pointer finger use your child’s tummy, back, or hand)
1 step, 2 steps, I found him under there.
(walking fingers to under the chin or the under arms)
Round and round the garden, through the wind and rain,
1 step, 2 steps, I found him there again.
This little rhyme and finger play is great anywhere you need to redirect your little one.
Hush a Bye Baby
Hush a bye baby up in the sky
On a soft cloud it is easy to fly.
Angels keep watch over you as you sleep,
So hush a bye baby don’t make a peep.
(You can substitute your child’s name for the baby and use this for bedtime or when your child needs a cuddle)
Come and join us at various locations around Edmonton and we can help you fill your Rhyme Toolbox! Check the Centre for Family Literacy website for the Rhymes that Bind schedule!