Today was my last day at Robertson House, which admittedly felt odd because there were a lot of NEW faces today. Isn't that always the way??
I started the class with a different hello song (We're All Here Today) because the majority of the group was older and I knew immediately that getting to know each child as quickly as possible was important for remaining in control. I also recognized that it was going to be important to be assertive and detailed when explaining our expectations for the class.
We started off with Sleeping Bunnies, which was inspired by one participant who decided that throwing pillows around the room would be a good idea. I LOVE when I can turn negative behaviour into an inspiration for a song! After that I decided to risk it and try a rather lengthy song that gave the participants a chance to think about what animal they would like to be today (Johnny Didn't Have Any Breakfast). It is a wonderful song that allows you to see somewhat of a glimpse of each person's identity ... or if not, what animal they would like to be! LOL. I tried to convince them to stand up for Elephants Have Wrinkles and unfortunately that is where I lost slight control so I switched gears and we tried Roll The Ball and I Have The Beanbag. Both of these refocusing activities worked in a positive way and led us to the IOTW.
I decided to bring Wooden Frogs from Thailand and after showing them how to run the mallet along the spine to make a rriiibbbiiiittt sound, we sang Little Green Frog all together.
After putting away the instrument, we brought out the Jam Bag and a took a moment to go over each instrument making sure that they knew how to play it safely and properly. I got them to play a "heartbeat" for The Lion Sleeps Tonight and caught some of the moms sitting on the side singing and playing along without a care in the world. It was wonderful to see and FEEL the happiness in the room!
Unfortunately it was my last day and when I announced that I would see them in the new year, I was met with a series of groans but I made sure to assure them that I would be back in the new year ... Goodbye 2012, Hello 2013! Auld Lang Syne!