The ABC of Child Whispering- J is for JUGGLING

Confused schoolboy looking at arrows pointed in different directions,  back view,
Confused schoolboy looking at arrows pointed in different directions, back view,

We are now in January – the time of heat, fires and wonderful freedom for children.
I am fascinated by the amount of progress our students make during the holidays. They come in fresh, motivated and happy.
They are not juggling too many balls at the moment.
They can concentrate.
Many children we see at ICE are enrolled in 5/6 different after school activities and have NO time to play, dream, think or even get their homework done.
Why so many balls in the air?
Is it because we think our kids will be happier if they have all the so-called “advantages”?
Is it because we are frightened of children who might have some spare time? Are we frightened of our own children?
Children are so over-scheduled that when they finish a task at ICE they put their pencil down and quickly yell out, “Finished!” They are desperate for the next task- they do not know how to deal with the spaces between things.
Problem is- it is in the spaces that human beings get their best ideas and insights. Our poor overloaded kids have no spaces, too many balls in the air and unthinkingly grab a digital device to fill any spaces.
Are we all terrified of being with ourselves?
Many children are dropping balls and falling apart. They can’t juggle forever- they need time to be kids!
On behalf of the children we see- I urge you all to allow some spaces- for your children and yourself!

MUSIC IS THE SWEETENER FOR LEARNING DIFFICULTIES!

21114525“Just A Spoonful of Sugar Helps The Medicine Go Down In A Most Delightful Way”
Music can help increase learning for children, particularly those with autism and other learning musicdifficulties.
Music activities provide much needed sensory input through mind and body stimulation at the same time to engage learning. A well-designed music programme will stimulate different parts of the brain at once to process rhythm, emotion and movement, while encouraging creativity, experimentation and exploration in a most delightful way!
Music helps the whole child engage both physically and mentally especially in the early stages of reading and decoding text. Because tempo, pitch and beat are crucial elements in learning to read, children who have been exposed to music demonstrate a higher ability to anticipate words, rhythms and concepts when learning to speak, write and read.

Exposure to singing, dancing and playing (a variety of instruments) help to develop and sharpen proper voice control, motor planning and fine-tune fine and gross motor skills.
Children who experience learning difficulties, if encouraged to participate in music lessons, are more easily able to practice and assimilate new concepts in grammar and punctuation .

This is key in allowing the child to engage faster and scaffold their learning more effectively.

Children with learning difficulties, in particular on the Autism spectrum, who are part of a consistent music program also demonstrate increased focus, more voluntary attention, better memory, increased social interaction and greater ownership and enjoyment of their literacy journey.

When a child with learning difficulties experiences success in music, this leads to increased self-esteem, effective fine and gross motor control, a greater awareness of the world around them and better social and communication skills.

Music can also enhance discipline and move a child towards a more positive, affirming attitude while giving them a sense of pride in their work.

Music is a means that enables a child with learning difficulties to show their emotions in a creative, non-verbal way they might not otherwise be able to express. Where once there was frustration anxiety, unhappiness, struggle and resulting behavioural difficulties, music is the spoonful of medicine that provides healing for a child experiencing learning difficulties and gives them a sense of achievement and purpose!