Music Connections Recommends…

Music, books, web links, videos, etc. that will add joy to your family life.

Flowers, Dewdrops, and Gardens Resources

The theme for the Kindermusik Village –  Dewdrop Semester, all about flowers and gardens.

My favorite poem that fits right into the theme is the following.  Below the verse, there is a list of more resources on the subject.

The Flowers    by Robert Louis Stevenson

From “A Child’s Garden of Verse”  It can be found as a Little Golden Book.


  • All the names I know from nurse:
  • Gardener’s garters, Shepherd’s purse,
  • Bachelor’s buttons, Lady’s smock,
  • and the Lady Hollyhock.
  •  
  • Fairy places, fairy things,
  • Fairy woods where the wild bee wings,
  • Tiny trees for tiny dames –
  • These must all be fairy names !
  • Tiny woods below whose boughs
  • Shady fairies weave a house;
  • Tiny treetops, rose or thyme,
  • Where the braver fairies climb !
  •  
  • Fair are grown-up people’s trees,
  • But the fairest woods are these;
  • Where, if I were not so tall,
  • I should live for good and all.

 

Favorite Books on the theme of Flowers and Gardens:

 The Carrot Seed, by Ruth Krauss, illustrations by Crockett Johnson, Harper & Row Publishers, 1945       This is the author of Harold and the Purple Crayon.   This is just as wonderful of a story about a young boy taking care of his plants, even though everyone is telling him it WON’T work.  His patience and persistence pay off with a HUGE carrot. 

 

TLC, Grow With Me!  by Lissa Rovetch, ill. by Chum McLeod  – A Do-Re-Me & You Publication  A young girl gets a present from a neighbor, a surprise in a pot of dirt.  She gets hints along the way to learn how to make the surprise appear.  Excellent for children just learning the art of gardening.  Since it is DRMY, of course it comes with a CD of fun songs for gardening.  You may find it on a good sale at www.shopkindermusik.com .

 

Dandelion,  by Don Freeman,       Scholastic, 1964         (Excellent author)    A Lion decides to dress up fancy for a party, but everyone is glad when he gets back to being himself.       

Chrysanthemum, by Kevin Henkes,     GreenWillow Books, 1991  

A young mouse girl is lovingly named by her parents, but once she starts school, she’s not so sure how much she likes her name. 

I absolutely love the extended vocabulary that Dad uses in this book. For 3 and up.

.

Inch by Inch, The Garden Song,  by David Mallet and Ora Eiten;  Trophy Picture Books, 1997.  This song is a classic song from the 60’s days of love and peace, and becoming more self-reliant.  The illustrations are simply, yet poignant, and you’ve got to love the biggest beet in the world that is harvested.  I love reading AND singing this to my daughter.   This one is actually very good for even young readers, and they will love you to sing the song – the melody is written on the back pages.

A recorded version is on Mary Miche’s Earthy Tunes album (see below).

Blog Postings on the subject for your enjoyment:

 

 

April 20, 2008 Posted by | All ages, Birth to Five Years, Books, Do-Re-Me & You!, Music Recording, Nature, Promotes fun interaction, Websites | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Do-Re-Me & You! NOW merged with Discovery Toys

Since there are several postings on this BLOG that recommend Do-Re-Me & You! products, you will be interested to know that this company has now merged with Discovery Toys.

If you are familiar at all with Discovery Toys, you’ll know that they hold the same high standards for quality toys that encourage learning through active exploration and discovery.  Do-Re-Me & You will be adding the element of music learning to the line of toys offered by Discovery Toys.  Actually, Kindermusik International will continue to design, record, and produce products as part of the merger agreement.

Unfortunately, I chose not to switch to being a Discovery Toys consultant.  I totally believe in the products, and support this merger.  As the future unfolds, I see that these products will complement each other, and truly bring FULLY integrated music and learning sets to more and more families.  I chose to instead focus on my Kindermusik programs and on my family.

Please feel free to check out www.DiscoveryToys.com for yourself, and Search for Do-Re-Me & You products.  You can also get a lot of the closeout sets for really great prices on the Kindermusik site, www.shopkindermusik.com .  Really great prices on fantastic integrated music learning sets that are not available anywhere else, and won’t ever be.  Just because they are close-outs does NOT mean they are not good.  They just didn’t make Discovery Toys top choice list.  My 4 year old daughter LOVES the book and CD sets, and I LOVE the music on these CDs, and all the fun learning things that come with them. 

Happy shopping!

April 17, 2007 Posted by | Discovery Toys, Do-Re-Me & You! | , , , | Leave a comment

Animal Play with Kindermusik and Do-Re-Me & You!

Since the Spring semester’s theme for the Our Time – Fiddle Dee Dee is all about animals, I thought you might enjoy some rollicking resources for animal fun.  This posting will cover Do-Re-Me & You! sets that include a wide variety of animals.  The next posting will include other songs, books, and resources about animals that my family just loves.  See further postings for resources on specific animals.

This is just a list and my thoughts, for more full descriptions and pictures of each set, see www.discoverytoys.com.  If you email broughjoy@yahoo.com , she can provide further information on the Do-Re-Me & You sets now available through Discovery Toys.

10 In the Bed  Ten in the Bed  book and CD set, which includes each of the ten animals involved in the classic rhyme.  Little ones will enjoy singing “Roll Over” and counting down with these animals, as well hearing their snippets of conversations in the process.  The whole CD is full of number and counting oriented songs – many of them including animals – lots of fun!  Sorry, puppets are not available with this set at the moment.

Awesome Animals  Awesome Animals ABC ($19.95) is a cool book and CD set that features unique animals that you don’t usually see in alphabet books (“O” is for Okapi).  A fun feature of the book is that it is narrated by Ferdinand the Flea, who, of course, KNOWs animals well, and is hip with humor, and interesting facts.  The songs on the CD are a fun foray into the alphabet and animals from all around the world.

Tub Tunes ($19.95) CD includes a lot of songs about animals you will find around the water, ducks, frogs, fish… oh, and the coolest version of the “Itsy Bitsy Spider” that you will ever hear!

Jungle Hokey PokeyPut Your Left Paw In!  A Jungle Hokey-Pokey  – WOW!  Get up and DANCE with the animals with this CD.  You will love the island feel of the music on this CD, it has the coolest carribean arrangements for familiar and new songs about jungle animals.  Hands down, this is one of my families’ favorites.  The book is fabulous are too!  It is not available with the puzzles at this time.

Frog Went A Dancing  Frog Went a-Dancing  is a wonderful set, and perfect for traveling.  The music’s steady beats have wonderfully rich arrangements that are upbeat while still have a calming effect – really nice for car rides.  The wooden lily pad castanet helps keep a cool beat.  There are wonderful songs about each animal in the book, and when you are reading at home, it can elicit a lot of fun animal movements.   The plush frog backpack is not available at this time.

February 25, 2007 Posted by | Animal Fun, Birth to Five Years, Do-Re-Me & You!, Music Recording, Promotes fun interaction, Prop play | 1 Comment

Pretend Play

Pretend play is such a significant part of a child’s life because it helps them explore the world on their own terms.  It helps them build their communication skills, and vocabulary (esp. when playing with an adult), and helps them understand others better, as they get a chance to BE the firefighter, or dancer, or mommy.

There are several DRMY sets that offer children an opportunity to learn about, explore, and pretend to do new things, be different characters, and develop the creative, out-of-the box thinking needed for good problem solving skills.

Mary Bridget  Mary Bridget’s Surprise – In the book, Mary Bridget and her little sister, who always wears butterfly wings, must clean their room, so decide in the process they are going to run away to grandma’s house.  So they have to pack all the things they will need on their adventures they come across as they get there.  Imagination bursts out of this story and illustrations, which include seek-and-find boxes on the corner of each page. 

The CD is chock full of fun songs I remember from girls camp, like “I love the Mountains…”  “This Land is Your Land”, “The Water is Wide”, and “Grandma’s Feather Bed”, as well as some Kindermusik songs, “Let’s go Riding Together”, and some original songs, like “Butterfly Wings”.  

This is a great set for having fun on a long trip, esp. if you are going to Grandma’s house, and esp. if you also purchase the cool roller suitcase with fanny pack, and “keep cool” water bottle. 

Tressa  Tressa, The Musical Princess – The book features Tressa, a girl who is most certainly sure she was born a musical princess, and somehow mistakenly got switched at birth to be with this family, which just recently acquired a new little loud, cranky dragon (actually baby brother).  It shows how she finds ways to use her magic to tame the dragon and make a peaceful family.  The CD features a young girl singing these all original songs that focus on issues from the book.  This set also comes with a pink tulle tutu that plays music and turns on and off with the touch of a button. 

Kindertown Fire Brigade   Kindertown Fire Brigade – The book features an all-animal fire brigade, and their adventures in the fire house, as well as rescue missions, and actual fire-fighting.  The animal work together as a team, and even the smallest member plays important parts in the job of being a fire brigade.  The song features a lot of originals about fire-house life and animals, and songs about rescuing a cat, and “Our Brave Local Heroes”.   Any child that adores firefighters will love these songs and stories, and will enjoy playing out their parts in the coat and fire hat that accompany this set.

Rupert  NEW !   Rupert, the Wrong Word Pirate  – Rupert has a way of saying things that get all mixed up sometimes, which has a way of thwoing his ship and crew off course.  The CD’s hilarious, swashbuckling crew members sing about the finer parts of pirate life, Aargh!  Complete with hat, eye patch, and durable foam sword.   James saw a child’s version of “Pirates of Penzance” before he turned 3, and immediately was searching for something in my purse that he could draw on a mustache.  This fascination lasted for months and months of fun.  I wish I had these songs to sing with us back then!

October 28, 2006 Posted by | 2 - 5 years, Costumes, Do-Re-Me & You!, Music Recording, Promotes fun interaction, Prop play | Leave a comment

Morning Magic

Need some great music to make your morning bright and cheerful ?  Our family’s mornings start out much better when our ears, minds, and bodies are treated to some joyful sounds, rather than grouchy groans and rushing stress.  We have several CDs from which we choose; some of our favorites are Do-Re-Me & You sets, and there are others:

Mr. Sun  DRMY – Mister Sun ($17.95) features a card book of this classic song, with a felt sun that pokes through holes in the center of each page.  But the real treat, for all ages, is the CD full of sunshine – sunshine songs that is, “Sunshine on My Shoulders”, and “You are the Sunshine in My Life, as well as catchy originals like “Sun-Sunny Sunshine Day”.  I even listen to it in the car when I don’t have my children with me – it makes me happy.

Wiggle Waggle  DRMY – Wiggle Waggle ($25.95) features a card book that Cora has adored for over a year.  She loves to laugh at the animals and their funny ways of trying to do the true to life wiggle waggle dance of the honey bees, and to run her finger along the path the bee takes across each page.  The plush multi-sensory bee is about 12″ long, and is so soft and lovable.  But, of course, the CD is the best, featuring a wide range of songs -from folksy to classical.  About half the songs are just instrumental, and the arrangements really make the music have a magical effect on morning attitudes.  It also includes an adorable version of “I’m Bringing Home a Baby Bumble Bee”, sung by a child, and a child’s way of looking at the world.

Critter Giggles  DRMY – The Critter Giggles CD is also full of great fun-filled songs which will have you singing and laughing along with songs like “Boom, Boom Ain’t it Great to be Crazy”, and “Waddly Atcha”.  You can purchase the CD separately for $12.95, or you can get it along with a book of fold out book full of 21 jokes.  This is great for helping young children remember and tell jokes that are actually funny, a wonderful way to help them spark conversations and friendships.

Pottery Barn Kids sells a CD called “First Steps“, that is a wonderful collection, by original artists, of classic songs such as “Singin’ In the Rain”, “Glow Worm”, “Swinging on a Star”, and even Louis Armstrong’s “When You’re Smiling”.  Share a bit of fabulous music history with these great songs in the morning, and learn to love these songs all over again.

You also should get a recording of “Harry Belefonte – The Legendary Performer” – Harry’s calypso songs are a perfect start to the day – or anytime you want to sing, dance, and jump around.  With songs like “Day-O”, “Mama Look A Boo Boo” (be aware they may learn the words to this song, and a LOT of giggling will go on as they tease DAD), and “Jump Down, Spin Around” will have you all dizzy. 

October 22, 2006 Posted by | All ages, Do-Re-Me & You!, Music Recording | Leave a comment

Build, Bake, Sing & Scrub

The themes for both “Milk & Cookies” (Our Time) and “Our Kind of Day” (Family Time) focus on daily routines around the home.  Several of the DRMY kits fit into this category.  You can see pictures and find out more at www.drmy.com . 

Music Makes My Day  (infant and up)                                                     $32.95The Starter set includes a CD, a card book, two shakers, and a scarf.  This is a great gift for both new parents, all the way up to 1st birthdays.  The music, collected from around the world, is wonderfully engaging, and the songs highlight many of the activities the baby will see in the book, playing with bubbles, scarves, shakers, or even balls.  It will inspire parents and children to play creatively during daily routines together.  A DVD can also be purchased, $14.95, which features live babies doing the same activities with the corresponding music playing along. 

What Do You Say?  Please and Thank You  (talkers)                              $19.95Teaching manners is so fun when you are dealing with funny animal friends, humorously portrayed in precarious situations in the book.  The songs are catchy and have children singing their way to polite phrases, even when the music is off.  

Pat-A-Cake  (infant and up)                                                                   $25.95This fun cloth activity book turns this Mother Goose rhyme into a multi-sensory experience for babies.  It is excellent quality and a fairly quiet toy – great for stimulating baby during times to be quiet.  The music on the CD includes upbeat dance renditions of familiar songs, ie. Muffin Man, and has new ORIGINAL songs like, “Zoom, Zoom, the Airplane spoon” and “The High Chair Drummer”.   

Noodles from Scratch (2 and UP)                                                           $32.95I LOVE this CD, it is pure Jazz fun, with “Laughter Makes the World Go Round”, and favorites like “Muffin Man” and “Little Sack of Sugar”.  This upbeat music is exactly what I need to keep me and the kids happy and hoppin’ around the kitchen while we prepare and/or clean up after a meal.  The rest is just icing on the cake… the book has a wonderful group of animal making noodles from scratch (the snake is used as the rolling pin), and is so much fun to read and sing.  The set also comes with a deep blue chef’s hat, and apron, with pockets to hold the child size utensils.  You can also purchase the cooking tools, ie. 3 nesting bowls, and a set of measuring spoons and cups, for $14.95.  I love the gripping rubber bottoms on the bottom of the bowls, it seems to help keep the bowl in place with such eager hands.  My nephew loves to don HIS outfit, and use his tools to help me make guacamole for our Tacos, as we dance around the kitchen to the music. 

Bake, Build, Sing, and Scrub ( 2 and up)                                               $14.95This is a simple and inexpensive set.  With only the CD and activity book, I almost overlooked this one… until I heard the CD and found some of the BEST cleaning songs I have ever heard.  The book is filled with fun, easy, and inexpensive ways to incorporate music and fun into your everyday routines… at almost any age. 

TLC – Grow With Me  (4 and up)                                                 $29.95 / $19.95All about gardening, this set is a great gift for a little green thumb in the making.  The little girl in the book receives a gift of a planted seed in a pot, and has to learn how to help the little seed grow into a beautiful plant.  The set comes with a white pot with gell shapes to decorate it with, and includes the dirt and some seeds of their own.  The CD has fun songs about the responsibilities and joys of growing your own plant. 

Night Time and Bathtime favorites will come in separate BLOGs.  Remember, I am the only consultant at this time in

Polk
County, so you need to order, or book your party through me.  And I could sure use some help…

October 21, 2006 Posted by | All ages, Do-Re-Me & You!, DVD, Music Recording, Parenting, Prop play | 4 Comments

Rockin’ Rhythms for Big Kids

Got Rhythm?   We do.  Several Do-Re-Me & You ! sets are designed for children around 6 and up (sometimes younger), to have fun while developing steady beat and complex rhythm skills.   These sets share, in a new way, what kids have been doing for centuries, hand-clapping activities, jumping rope, and tapping out a beat on anything they can find.   Each set comes with a DVD featuring children demonstrating these activities, from simple to complex, then breaking each activity down so it is easy to learn.   You’ll all be entranced, intrigued, and challenged to have fun moving to the beat!  What’s more, these activities are so much fun, children will be sharing them with others and making friends.

Get Up and Stomp!   – This is the newest set available and takes its inspiration from the musical group – STOMP !    Learn how to make instruments, create rhythms and dance routines using everyday objects, ie. pushing brooms, bouncing basketballs, and shaking macaroni boxes.  High quality wooden drum sticks and sand blocks are included.

 Jump to the Beat !   – This is jump roping fun at it’s best, and the kit has won several awards.  The DVD also includes the precision jump roping team, the Indy Air Bears, demonstrating some creative and challenging routines – WOW!  This kit comes with two Indy Air Bear endorsed ropes for single jumping or double dutch.  This set also comes with a CD, where you’ll find the techo style of music as accompaniments to these classic songs – which appeals greatly to this age child. Awards:  iParenting Media Winner, Dr. Toy Smart Toy Award, and The National Parenting Center Seal of Approval.

It’s All in the Rhythm !   – This is the classic set from DRMY that has won several awards.  These classic hand-clapping rhymes and games are so engaging, children don’t realize they are developing good eye-hand coordination and sense of rhythm.  From simple routines like “Miss Mary Mack” to the complex “Shimmy Shimmy CoCo Pop”, and games that work their memory, like “Concentration”, this set has all a kid needs to get all their friends hand jiving.  It also includes a CD with all the songs, and a hand shaped flip card chart that includes the words of all the songs, and can be attached to a backpack or purse.  Awards:  National Parenting Publications Honors, iParenting Media Winner, and Teachers’ Choice Award.

I LOVE these sets, and highly recommend them as gifts, and for the whole family to enjoy doing together.  My 11 year old son has really enjoyed the first two sets and we are just starting to explore the new one.  Find out more about the DRMY products on the previous entry marked DRMY Introduction, or see these sets online at www.drmy.com . So get ready to stomp, jump, and clap your way to a fun and healthy day!

October 9, 2006 Posted by | Ages 6 and up, Do-Re-Me & You!, DVD, Music Recording | 3 Comments

Dancing and Moving Fun !

There are two Do-Re-Me & You ! sets that contain some of the most hoppin’, boppin’, move to it music around.  Each contains a book featuring the title song, with all it’s cool new verses.  AND each comes with its own set of simple, yet fun magnetic puzzles, contained in a cool little tin can lunch box. 

Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes – This version of the song is set to the tune of London Bridge is Falling Down.  This integrated set is really meant to help children learn their body parts, and explore familiar and creative ways to move each body part.  The puzzles feature 4 children, that are horizontally divided in four parts (head, shoulders, knees, and toes).  The fun picture cards that come with it show how each child is supposed to look on the front, but on the back, it shows a “mixed up” version, which they can try to match (excellent for sequence matching).  Honestly, it’s all great, but the CD is one of the best for getting you and your family up and moving around – having fun !

Put Your Left Paw In !   – This is the Zoo animal version of the above set.  The CD is just as lively, and features a lot of calypso music and fun drum beats.  The animals are having a grand time doing the Hokey Pokey, and the children can play with the animal puzzles divided into only 3 sections apiece.  The same type of picture cards are included.  My 2 1/2 year old daughter flipped for this set, and caught on so quick to the sequence matching.  And we use the music sometimes in the morning to get us all up and moving and in a good mood.

I highly recommend both these sets.  Because the music is so good, it really is appropriate for a wide range of ages.  Even my 11 year old likes the music, and often plays with the puzzles with his sister.  See pictures online at www.drmy.com , and check the DRMY Introduction BLOG entry on this website if you are unfamiliar with the Do-Re-Me & You product line.

October 8, 2006 Posted by | All ages, Books, Do-Re-Me & You!, Music Recording | 1 Comment

Do-Re-Me & You Introduction

Do-Re-Me & You is a company that was created by Kindermusik to fill the need for families to obtain high quality musical learning sets.  The creative team focuses on developing integrated, multi-sensory learning sets that include recordings, books, instruments, and learning accessories.   Of course, these are great for gift giving, but be assured, you will find excellent products for some family fun of your own.

As of April 2007, Discovery Toys has taken Do-Re-You & Me! under it’s wing.  Kindermusik will continue the process of developing high quality recordings, books, and learning materials, but they will be offered exclusively through Discovery Toys. These products can be seen on their website:  www.discoverytoys.com, and can only be ordered through an authorized consultant, and so far, the only consultant in Polk County is Joy Brough.  You can contact her by email:  broughjoy1@yahoo.com, or by calling her directly at 863-816-1023.  You can also host a party in your home .  Or you can host a catalog party, and just show the catalogs and a few items with your friends and family at your leisure.  As a hostess, you get FREE product, plus one item at 1/2 price items. – Plus there are cool monthly specials for hostesses as well.

There is a lot of potential in this business for a certain type of personality, to really enjoy what you do while making your dreams come true.  Just ask about the benefits of becoming a consultant.

Merry Melodies,    Debbie

October 8, 2006 Posted by | All ages, Do-Re-Me & You! | Leave a comment

   

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