Tuesday, September 3, 2013


Create Meaningful Music Experiences for Children {Daria Music Review & Giveaway}

A special thank you to Daria Music for sponsoring this post!

Studies show that music can play an important role in children's physical, cognitive, and emotional development!  Today, I'm sharing five musical activities you can do with preschoolers and introducing you to Daria (an amazing children's performer) AND hosting a giveaway for one of her phenomenal CDs and musical instruments!

Daria is an inspiring musician and performer who travels the world inspiring children through music.  Her website has a ton of resources, including ethnically diverse musical instruments, a songbook, song samples, crafts and activities, materials for homeschoolers, and more!   She is delightful to work with and her music is amazing!

We had a chance to review her I Have a Dream CD and a caxixi rattle, and I am happy to recommend them both!  The songs are easy to sing along with and naturally make children want to dance.  I am so excited to use the CD with our Music Time this year!  We've already used it for some activities and absolutely loved it!

Music Time Activities

Music Time can integrate large muscle activities, math, rhythm, language, art, and so much more!  Here are five great activities to get your Music Time moving!

#1:  Musical Instrument Exploration:  Place a bin with musical instruments on a blanket with your children.  Let them explore the instruments and make any music they like!  Let them choose an instrument to play while you sing a well-known song like Wheels on the Bus.  Are you interested in instruments from around the world?  You have a chance to win a caxixi rattle from Daria's Music in the giveaway below!

#2:  Make Your Own Musical Instruments:  Daria has instructions for several less-well-known instruments here.  Learn about your instruments' origins and play a song with them!

#3:  Rhythm Dance:  Give your children percussion instruments and let them play them in rhythm with a drum beat you create or with a song that has a strong rhythm.  Walk, step side to side, or dance with the beat!  "Ride Horse, Ride" is a song on the I Have a Dream CD inspired by Native Americans and actually sung with a Lenape Clan Mother.  My children could easily feel the beat in this song and had no trouble playing along with the strong rhythm.  Any percussion instrument would work for this, but we loved using the caxixi rattle!  It was easy enough for the youngest children to use and novel enough that my six-year old loved playing it!

#4:  Feelings Song:  Let your children choose instruments to create their own Feelings Song.  What would a happy song sound like?  A sad song?  How do you feel right now?  Record the performances and watch them!

#5:  Build a Song-Based Unit:  I plan to use I Have a Dream when we prepare for Martin Luther King Jr. Day.  It is an inspiring song on the I Have a Dream CD about unity and reaching for something better than what we have.  It's easy to sing along with, and my children will be able to learn the chorus in one lesson.  It would also be easy to build a lesson around any of the songs inspired by other nations.  Here Come the Mothers, for example, is based on an African tradition where the mothers sell the abundance of food they have at harvest time, purchase small treats for their children, and return to their families with the gifts.  A new ethnic food, a geography/map lesson, and writing activities could easily be tied into these songs.

I Have a Dream CD & Caxixi Rattle Review & Giveaway

I have only wonderful things to say about Daria Music and this CD!  Daria has won many awards, and it is so easy to see why.  I have already described some of the ways we have (and will!) use this CD in our Music Time activities.  The songs feel extremely natural and child-friendly.  My children love them!  We even took the CD on a road trip and listened to it five times in one day.  Each time, I peeked back to see my kids literally bouncing to the beat, even though they were buckled in their chairs!

We have also loved the caxixi rattle...I need to order extras so all of my kids can play it together!  Even the background is exciting:  my daughter thinks having a musical instrument actually made in Africa is so cool!  The bright colors of the natural woven materials have drawn all my children to this instrument--it's become wonderful practice for them in waiting for a turn!

 And, even more exciting for you...Daria has agreed to give one of my readers their own CD and caxixi rattle!  This will be such a treat! You can use them at your own Music Time activities and lessons or just play the CD in the car!

The giveaway will run until midnight on Monday, September 16th and is open to residents in the continental United States.  Please "white-list" my email: the winner will have 24 hours to respond to an email; otherwise, a new winner will be chosen.  Entries will be verified.  Good luck!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure:  I was given a copy of the I Have a Dream CD and a caxixi rattle to review.  Daria Music will also be sending the giveaway prize to the winner.  All opinions are 100% mine.  I only recommend products that I love and that I expect my readers to love as well!

I may share at any of these parties!


Andrea said...

How neat! My daughter would love that rattle- she is really into dancing and music right now!

Anonymous said...

We would like to the I Have a Dream CD. We did another study on Africa and which had music and our kids really enjoyed it! This would be a bonus!

Unknown said...

My daughter's name is Daria and she loves music! We'd like to have the I Have a Dream CD, but they all seem great!

Natasha said...

Grandchildren's Delight is the one I would pick!

Unknown said...

Grandchildren's Delight

Anonymous said...

What a fantastic review and giveaway! I love Daria's products and so do my children :-)

Thank you for linking up this week to the Thoughtful Spot Weekly Blog Hop! I do hope that you will visit my neck of the magical woods every week and take a quick rest by the tree on the tree stump while you read everyone’s blog posts that they have so thoughtfully shared with all of us.

Unknown said...

Beautiful Rainbow World

Art Mama said...

Good post! We keep a bucket of instruments out nearly all of the time. One of Figlet's favorite activities is to have a 'jam session' with her Daddy

Lauren said...

Love all the music ideas! Thank you for sharing at our Pinning for Play link party!

I love the Grandparent's Delight CD. My parents would love it!

Carrie said...

We love that CD at my house. We listen to it all the time!! Thank you for sharing at Sharing Saturday!

Pamela said...

My students loved "world music" the best of all the CDs I played during the day. They would hum along while working and even played with the tunes at recess. My grandsons are now benefitting from my collection which does not include this title. We would sure enjoy this addition!

The Zookeeper said...

I would probably by "Grandchildren's Delight".