Jumping All Day Long

It’s been a loooooooong, snowy winter here in New England. Early April, and yards and playgrounds are still covered in mud and snow, so kids are coming to class with plenty of energy.

I have Jumping All Day Long by Jennifer Gasoi on my playlist for those moments in class when it’s clearly time to amp up the activity level for a minute or two. gasoi2

The lyrics suggest body movements, and the actions change frequently enough that kids stay interested. During the instrumental sections, we either do “free dancing” (kids choose their own movements) or we try holding a pose (warrior I provides a powerful-feeling “resting place,” and two instrumental sections means you can do both sides).

With some groups, we do the whole song “feet on mats,” but in the right space, with kids who can handle it, kids are free to move wild and free! Woo hoo!

Preschoolers love this song, but school-age kids also happily boing around the room, and some of my goofier (totally a compliment!) middle schoolers even have fun with it.

You might get a request to “Do it again!!!” especially from younger kids, but eventually kids will happily collapse onto their mats. This is a great time to notice breathing, heart rate, sensations in big muscle groups, and to transition kids into a calmer, more focused activity.

 

Just sit in the middle…

imagesWhen children’s music is good, it is very, very good.

The music of Jennifer Gasoi definitely falls into the very, very good category. Jennifer is a Canadian musician, and her album, Throw a Penny in the Wishing Wellis the very deserving winner of the 2014 Grammy Award for best Children’s Album.

I’ve recently added Jennifer Gasoi’s Little Boat to my collection of great songs for savasana/final resting. Her voice is gorgeous, the tempo is soothing, and the lyrics remind the children (and grown-ups!) to breathe and watch their thoughts. Quite lovely.

Listen to it here.