One of my favorite LANK traditions is choosing a yearlong theme that helps guide curriculum and connects learning throughout the school. Not only does this theme provide cohesiveness between programs, but it also creates enthusiasm and excitement for our staff as they begin planning for the year. Last year our school enjoyed connecting experiences to the great outdoors. 'LANK Learns Nature-ally' was incorporated in many ways throughout the year and has now become an integral part of every classroom. For the 2017-2018 school year we will concentrate our efforts by infusing music in all aspects of our learning, and activities. It is very exciting for us to unveil ABC, 123, Do, Re, Mi as this year’s concentration.
I recently read a Time Magazine article that stressed the importance of “making” music rather than passively listening to music. The article made the analogy that no one becomes fit by watching sports, but instead one achieves fitness through active participation. As educators and parents we already know the many benefits of music; increased memory, language gains, motor awareness and skill, self-regulation, and expression. So it would seem that our preschoolers will gain the most from experiencing music by actively playing with sound, using instruments and vocalizations, enjoying movement, and steady beat.
As the school year begins, we look forward to encouraging and helping your children to make music at various times throughout the day; during periods of transition, when meeting for circle time, and when learning new concepts. It will be wonderful to hear the sounds of clapping, stomping, and singing! Movement will also be encouraged, and we expect to see joyful dancing, swaying, and rocking, accompanied by scarves and ribbons. Welcome to another wonderful year filled with the promise of beautiful sound, and the benefits that only experiential learning can provide.