What can children learn from Disco (or any music genre)?

Genres take form in certain time periods and are often a reflection or reaction to events going on in societies and cultures.  Disco is no exception!  Disco began to form in the mid-sixties and became really popular in the seventies.  It is a genre that, I would say, came about as a reaction to events and perceptions of those decades.

A lot of people associate disco with excess. Hopefully we don’t define the music or culture by this, even as this aspect reflects societal factors. Things to remember, The Vietnam War was in full swing, African Americans were still fighting for their rights as were women and LGBTQ communities.  Who wouldn’t want a place to have fun and feel accepted considering all of this?!

Talking about and exploring disco music offers an avenue for introducing children to some of the historical events mentioned above as well as discussions about acceptance and tolerance.

Disco also combined and sampled from different movements, musical styles, and cultures.  It had Latin influences, hippy and psychedelic influences, R&B/soul and more.  So, once again, it offers a starting point to talk about these subjects.  You could also move through history and show how we got to disco (or any music genre).

The most obvious benefit of any genre is music education.  Usually there are instruments or attributes that are prominent in certain genres.  This allows an avenue for children to take a more indepth look at these instruments, techniques, and attributes.

This site will work through many genres, starting with classical and moving forward in the coming months.  However in the coming weeks, since I’ve been working a lot on disco, I will be posting blogs that touch on different aspects of disco music and culture and how to use them to round out music, history, and cultural education for the young student.

We’ll start with this video that spends a day with Mike.  It will briefly give children a glimpse into what events caused people to have an attraction to disco music and culture.

Click the image to watch the video
Click the image to watch the video

PUT ON PURPLE DAY

POPThe month of May is Lupus Awareness Month, among other things.  Lupus is a bit of a mystery. It has been in my life for a long time, as my Mother suffered from the disease.  However, this is not a sad post.  I’m hoping to help, in my own tiny way, to bring more awareness to the disease.

Why wear purple and why bring awareness?  The more people know about something, the more they care and are willing to help.

So to that end, I’ll be wearing purple on Friday May 18th, which is ‘Put on Purple Day.’ I’ve also made a children’s song about that wonderful color, purple!  The video for that is below.  I hope you will enjoy learning about the many things that can be purple and, perhaps, learn more about lupus, too.  You can visit The Lupus Foundation of America or  www.lupusawarenessmonth.org to find out more about Lupus Awareness Month and ‘Put on Purple Day.’

THE PURPLE SONG!

 

Mother’s Day Thoughts and Songs

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I know you shouldn’t use blurry photos, but this is one of my favorites.  My Mom & I giggling away. She was the best friend a girl could have.

Below you will find a couple of songs I have written to be used for Mother’s Day themed lesson plans or play time.

However, please keep in mind that, while Mother’s Day is a wonderful holiday, it can be hard for some. After losing my own mother I’m more aware of the fact that some children may have lost or never known one or both parents.  They may also not live with their parents at all.  Any of these situations can cause children to have many different feelings about Mother’s Day or Father’s Day.

Many teachers make the choice of whether to do themed songs or activities for these occasions.  Discussion is always a great idea and works wonders even with the littlest little.

Now, without further ado, here are some songs and activities to add to your Mother’s Day repertoire.  Lyrics, and props used, for the songs can be found here.

“MOMMA MOMMA, I LOVE YOU”

This song is really easy to do a cappella with clapping.  It also offers some action steps towards the end.  So be sure to stand up and move!

“M-O-M, THAT SPELLS MOM”

BOOKS

– PICTURE BOOKS DESIGNED TO EXPLORE MUSIC AND CULTURE –

Disco at the Disco – also available on Amazon

Learn more about Disco at the Disco here.

 

COMING SOON:

flavor land website cover

 

 

Musical Mable will bring children along with her as she investigates different music genres.  The first book in the series, Musical Mable in Flavor Land, introduces children to Mable and how genres are like ice cream flavors.  Blueberry Blues or Ragtime Raspberry anyone?

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