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Sunday, January 17, 2010

Why Does Gray Matter?

How do you answer that question? Does gray matter because it's that vague place between two definites? Does gray matter because it's what we get when mixing black and white? Or does gray matter because it's what makes a rainy day cozy?

No. Gray matters because its what we think with. It's that slimy stuff inside our skulls that enables us to do calculus, tie our shoes, dream about dancing pop tarts, and make a decision to either walk on the wild side or to walk the straight and narrow. And gray matters because it's what Roger Day sings about on his new CD, aptly titled, Why Does Gray Matter?

The CD is a collection of 14 songs all about the brain. It's perfect for the science classroom. Introduce a lesson on the parts of the brain with Sara Bellum, the Brainy Girl. Motivate students to get ready to do their best work with Get Your Brain in Gear. Make them giggle with a sing-a-long to Monkey Brains. Inspire kids to feed their brains with nutritious foods with Brain Food - Eat it Up!

And by all means, play my favorite track to emphasize the difference between the duties of the left and right brain with the highly entertaining tune The Left Brain/Right Brain Song.

Elementary school science teachers need this CD in their collection. As an extra bonus, the CD comes with a copy of all the words to each song so that children can engage with the music, even the first time they hear it.

Sing a-long. Dance a-long. Learn a-long. Visit Roger Day's web site to listen to song samples from the Why Does Gray Matter CD and to buy your own copy today.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Get Ready. Get Set. Get Groovin'.

Get ready. Get set. Get groovin' with the new Bari Koral Family Rock Band CD, Rock and Roll Garden, scheduled for release on January 14th. Featuring twists on old favorites with songs like Hey Ducky, plus songs like Uh Oh, certain to be childhood favorites, kids and adults alike can't help but sing along.

Listening to Rock and Roll Garden transported me back to the days when my children and I listened to kiddie music together in the car and in the kitchen and while they were taking baths and just about any time they requested it. Some of my best memories are of listening to their four sweet voices singing in the backseat while we ran errands around town. Music like this takes families places, both literally and metaphorically.

The interactive nature of tunes such as Clap It!, Dance All Day, Big Sounds, Boom Boom, and others engages children with the music. It gets them up and moving, improves listening skills, and gives them confidence in their ability to operate on and in their environments. Rock and Roll Garden is a perfect addition to play group activities, family nights, library story times, and the preschool through kindergarten classroom. Any parent would be smart, as well, to leave a babysitter armed with it in her bag of tricks.

All that said, kids will enjoy Rock and Roll Garden long after their kindergarten years. As proof, I give you my 8 year-old daughter, who is, as I write this, singing along to Hey Ducky in the next room. I guess hearing my children's sweet voices singing in the backseat doesn't necessarily have to be a memory yet.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Nothing

On New Year's Eve, shortly before the bell tolled and the ball fell, my husband asked me, "So, what's your resolution for the new year?"

"You know what my resolution is," I said. "I'm going to embrace the routine, instead of fighting it and complaining about it; instead of trying to have great expectations of making some fabulous, momentous change and then being disappointed at the end of the year because the routine got in the way of me doing anything adventurous. I can't fail if I stick with the routine. Plus, the routine is good. It means everything in life is clicking along as it should. We need the routine and my goal for the new year is to make sure we've got it."

"Oh," he replied. "So you're doing nothing."

"Yeah," I conceded. "Nothing."

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