Kids in Motion – A Must Have Movement CD
“Kids in Motion” is a CD that I was introduced to during my student teaching and is a resource that I go back to again and again. I’ll admit, this album is pretty old and one of MANY on the list of great resources made by creative partners Greg & Steve, but it’s one of their best. You can hit up their website and peruse all of their wonderful stuff. There are lots of ways to incorporate the songs on the album and once you’ve taught the songs to kids they love to go back and sing them over and over again.
Here are just a few reasons why I love this album. There are a ton of fun and easy songs on the CD that make teaching movement games a snap. The tracks usually come with verbal prompts so that I don’t have to give instructions as the song is playing. If the kids listen to the lyrics they get everything they need to be successful on the song and with the movement. This means that kids are held accountable for listening so that they know what to do. It also means that I can stand back and help individual kiddos and don’t have to take a central role in teaching the material. I can be on the sidelines modifying behavior and encouraging and dancing along. Honestly, the directions are so clear in the music that I think I could potentially leave this CD with a substitute teacher and get some great results.
I also love this album because it has rocking accompaniments that the kids really like with options for any grade level. I start young with songs like “Body Talk” for kindergarten since it’s an easy and stress free way for them to move their bodies while still staying nonlocomotor. In “Body Talk” kiddos are prompted to move their eyebrows, then their fingers, then their cheeks, and on and on until they’re standing and moving their hips and legs and balancing. It definitely helps younger learners with body awareness and is a great intro into creative movement in the music room.
When kids get older we can move on to slightly more difficult songs like “Animal Action” where they start to incorporate locomotor movements and more difficult actions. This particular track is a great example because students get a free dance time (chorus) and then each verse gives them different prompts to “move like a…” different animal. Kids have to use their critical thinking skills to relate what an animal would look/move like and then create that movement with their bodies (fantastic transfer for this young age). I love “Animal Action” because it allows for fun movement that the kids like and it teaches form since the sections of free movement and animal movement are very clear and distinct.
Once kids are ready you can move up to songs like “Shadow Dancing” where once student or the teacher get to display movement that the other students have to imitate. Awesome chance for simultaneous imitation with this tune. And this song is a great opportunity for improvisation with clear prompts from the recorded track for transitions. It’s obvious that this music was written by people who know how to work with kids and know how to teach improvisation through movement!
And I have to say that some of my favorite “Back to School” starter songs are on this CD. “Beanbag Boogie” is one of my all time favorites to do with kids and is a great way to rework their knowledge of verse/chorus form. They have to toss the beanbags on the chorus as they move around the room and then balance the beanbags on their bodies for the verses (the CD give them prompts like balance on your foot, on your shoulder, on your back, etc.). I also love the “Freeze Song.” I do this song with scarves and the kids move and move and move and then when the music stops they have to freeze. The best part about this is that the musical recordings have built in freeze points so that I don’t have to go over and stop the recording. Everything goes on its own.
I can’t say enough about how much I love this recording. Go and check it out. Seriously, here’s the link to the Amazon page. If you get it, let me know what you think and I’ll share with you some of my favorites tracks! GREAT resources here for movement and easy easy easy to incorporate!