5 MORE Fall Music and Movement Activities
Fall is here (brrrrr) and Thanksgiving is around the corner, that means you need 5 more music and movement activities to keep your kids active as the months cool down! If you missed my last post filled with fall activities, you can check it out here.
Activity #1: Turkey Time
I wrote this song to practice sequencing and following 3-step directions for my clients working on higher-order cognitive skills. It is also a great song to target communication skills, specifically the initial “t” sound for your clients that are working on that skill.
Have children stand, either in a circle or in a line facing you
Play the song “Turkey Time”
Follow the directions of the song to flap your wings, shake your tail feathers, and stomp your feet in time with the music
Encourage children to sing along with the echo “It’s turkey, turkey, turkey time!”
Fade your modeling and see if the children can follow the directions of the song just by listening
If you enjoyed Turkey time, check out our other songs on YouTube!
Activity #2: Give Thanks Songwriting
November is the perfect time to share our feelings and talk about all of the things we are grateful to have in our lives. A lot of my clients struggle with expressing their feelings and excitement. This activity has been a hit every year, and it’s amazing to hear all of the beautiful memories my clients are able to share either through words or through selecting images from a choice board.
Directions (option 1):
Pass out a copy of the Give Thanks songwriting worksheet to each child
Have each child fill-in-the-blanks of the songwriting sheet
Collect each child’s sheet, then play each version of the song
Ask the rest of the group to guess who wrote each song after playing
Directions (option 2):
Have each child in the group take turns answering the questions “What are you thankful for?”
You can write some options on a white board or create a visual choice board for non-verbal children
Complete the song by filling-in-the-blanks on the sheet with each child's answer, then sing the final version with all of the children’s answers
Activity #3: Line Dancing
I never appreciated the community aspect of line dancing until I went to a real line dancing bar in Arizona. As a dancer and musician, I was in total heaven. I decided to bring this aspect of community, fun, and movement back to my clients through country line dancing in the fall months. I use popular line dances such as Cotton Eye Joe, but I also have found many other simple dances to teach my clients. Line dancing does not just have to be country, there are many pop songs that have group dance accompaniment.
Choose a simple line dance to teach children (I like to start with Cotton Eye Joe)
Find a simple tutorial video for children to watch that breaks down the steps
Practice the dance with children
Have small groups of children perform for each other
Have children provide constructive feedback to their friends about their dance and how they can improve
If your children enjoy learning this one line dance, I suggest checking out these popular line dances that kids are sure to hear at future school dances.
Activity #4: Tom the Turkey
I wrote this piggy back song a few years ago to help one of my clients work on selective attention skills and focus on communication skill development. I use a visual of Tom the Turkey live in session, but the video was a great way to work on the skill at home with a parent after session.
Play Tom the Turkey song
Pause the song when it asks the child “Can you find me…”
Cue the child to point to the desired item on the screen
Un-pause the song and continue playing
Continue pausing after each item request
Activity #5: The Fox – Music Listening
This is such a fun bluegrass song that fits perfectly in with the fall theme. I got this idea way back in college, and it has been a go-to intervention for my older clients ever since. There is some prep work involved with this activity. You have to create images that depict what is happening in the song (The fox went out on a chilly night, family of foxes feasting on a meal, etc.), or you can have your children draw what they are hearing in the song.
Directions (option 1):
Pass out a set of visual sequence cards to each child
Instruct children to listen to the song and place their picture cards in the order of the song
After the song has finished, check children’s work
Listen to the song again and give them a chance to make any edits to the order of their pictures
After the song has finished, check their pictures again and reveal the correct order
Directions (option 2):
Pass out paper and markers to each child
Instruct children to draw an image of something they hear in the song
Play the song again to give children time to complete their images
After the song has finished, ask each child to share their drawing and ask what they heard in the song that made them draw that picture
These are just a few of my favorite fall activities. I am sure you have your own go-to activities, and I would love to read about them in the comments below! I hope these ideas come in handy through the rest of fall. From everyone at Dynamic Lynks, we are thankful for your support and wish you the happiest of Thanksgivings!