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Reading Music Before Reading Words

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Visual Cue Cards

Written by Mentor Artist Hannah Dworkin

I look forward to working with Jessica Leaper’s Marindale preschool class of students with language delays every year because her kids have so much enthusiasm for music.  Every visit begins with the students yelling, “Hannah!!!!” as I enter the room.

They memorized my daily agenda by the second week, and they cheered at each transition.  One area that was especially successful was the teaching of musicianship.  About half the students could read basic rhythm by the end of the residency, quite a feat for preschoolers!

Their favorite song by far was “Goin’ on a Bear Hunt” where we marched around the room looking for a bear to take a picture of, and then we ran yelling back to our seats when we finally found him.  They also really enjoyed playing with a parachute.  We started every week sitting on the parachute identifying colors and singing about them in English and Spanish. Then all the children would jump under it while the adults pretended we could not find them.

I feel so fortunate to have had the opportunity to work with such a great group of kids and teaching team!

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