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Introduction

About the SING.PLAY.LOVE. Kit

We can't wait to show you how fun and exciting learning through music and play can be!

Music combined with play, rich picture book literature and YOU as your child’s play partner create the engagement a young child needs to learn and grow.SING.PLAY.LOVE. songs, books, and learning activities can be powerful tools for supporting the development.

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Lesson Takeaway

What we can learn.

Building Relationships

Teaching your child to connect with their caring adults

Relationships are the water in which we swim. Just like little fishies are born to be in the water, our little “fishies” are born to be in relationships. Babies and young children arrive expecting to interact with others and to build relationships. The most important lessons of early development are learned in the context of relationships. 

When children develop the type of positive and secure relationships that allow them to thrive, they can venture boldly out into the world because they know someone has their back. The ability to become independent and competent is grounded in relationships where children can turn to someone for help when necessary.
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Children develop these positive attachment relationships by learning to clearly communicate their needs. As babies, they do this by crying. As they get older, they do this by smiling, lifting their arms to be picked up, crawling after you, and eventually using more sophisticated communication like sign language or verbalizations. 

Adults encourage the development of these positive attachment relationships by responding to the child’s cues. Every time you respond to a baby’s cries, smile in response to their smile, or pick them up when they lift their arms you are communicating that you notice what they need and are there to provide it. Here are some activities to help you enrich and strengthen your relationship with the young child in your life.
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Sing

Read and sing a long!
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Play the Song

Play

Here are some simple ways to enrich and extend your child’s learning and other key developmental concepts.

Born to Move

Young children are born to move. Research indicates when placed in space free of distractions where there is room to move, children move for the sheer joy of moving. Find some space and watch your child move. This is a great opportunity to observe how their attachment with you helps keep them safe. How far will they move before they turn back to check in with you? How happy do they look when they move back to their haven of safety?

Imitation

Babies and young children love to imitate and to be imitated. Watch your baby’s expressions and imitate them. Then, watch as they try to imitate your expressions. If you want a real workout, try imitating your toddler’s movements. When they jump, you jump. When they wave their arms in the air, you wave your arms in the air. Then, try changing it slightly, move slower or faster than they did when you imitate and see what happens.

Mommies and Daddies

Young children love to pretend to take care of others. After soaking up all that loving attention from the caring adults in their life, they are ready to share it with others. A baby doll or stuffed animal, blanket, and baby bottle is all they need to pretend they are the parent. Follow their lead and try describing what they are doing as they take care of their little one. You’ll be amazed at what they have learned about relationships!

All the Fish in the Sea

Create a pretend aquarium that doubles as a water sensory bin your child can enjoy indoors or out. Add tub toys, seashells, smooth stones, plastic cups, or scoops to a shallow plastic storage box filled with several inches of water. Add bowls for sorting or tongs for practicing fine motor skills needed to pick up the treasures found “at the bottom of the ocean.” Funnels are also fun for pouring and playing and make excellent hats for the plastic fish in your aquarium!

Name that Need

Naming the need your child is communicating is a great way to let them know you see and understand what they want. This is sometimes referred to as “speaking for baby”. When they smile, you can say “You’re smiling. I think you’re enjoying playing with me. I like playing with you too.” When they cry, you might say, “You’re upset. I wonder if you’re hungry or if you just need a cuddle.” By narrating your child’s needs, you are teaching them the vocabulary they need to speak for themselves when they are ready. Your child also learns that being with you creates a secure space for them where they can relax and calm their minds and bodies. You are the safe harbor where they are seen, heard, and known.

Love

More things to enjoy. Recommending Reading.

Here are a few wonderful recommendations if your child loves books about fish.

  • Hooray for Fish! by Lucy Cousins
  • Big Fish Little Fish by Jonathan Litton
  • Ocean Life by Jill McDonald
  • The Rainbow Fish by Marcus Pfister
  • One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish by Dr. Seuss
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