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(See below for previous tips.)


by LeAnn Haggard
Dance Educator of the Year, 2006
Kimbo Author of FEEL THE BEAT CD


Rocks our minds
Rocks our bodies
Rocks our soul
Rocks our imagination
Rocks away stress and…
Rocks us socially which will help us to be a

How can I make these claims…EASY!!! I think that music was invented for Dance Teachers and Movement Specialists. Music is what helps us give our children inspiration.

Research has shown that music has a profound effect on our body and some researchers go as far as to say music heals! I say, "You bet!".

Music with a strong beat can activate brainwaves to resonate in sync with the beat. Faster beats bring sharper concentration and more alert thinking. (example: "Feel the Beat" African, Latin and Hip Hop Style) Conversely, slower tempos help us to calm down. (example: "Feel the Beat" Cool It Down-60 BPM)

Breathing and heart rate can also change with the right music, which reduces stress and tension; certainly a plus for the kiddies -- and the teachers! Music can change a person's state of mind. Remember, Brahm's lullaby? Don't we all have good memories of that song? Music is a means of learning. What would our world be like without it? We can teach academics, social skills, motor movements, communication and emotional expression with music.

I have had the privilege of teaching Physical Education, Preschool and Dance teachers at multiple state conventions and conferences. Here is my advice: "use music whenever you can, in whatever you do" -- and be ready for some great results!

  1. Can we march to music when we go to lunch?
  2. How about soft, soothing music as we get ready for naptime or as they rest their heads on their desks?
  3. Where is the music on the playground? How about Bach, Beethoven and Mozart as a collaborative effort with what the music teacher is doing?
  4. Can we have music playing when the children enter school or the gym?
  5. How about patriotic music to celebrate Independence Day or as we study history?

I bet you are starting to get the message! Good for you AND good for your students. Yeah!

We can ROCK the world of the wonderful children in our care when we take the time to add motivating music and movements that will build strong bodies and brains. Remember, choreography is a guideline on the outstanding dance and exercise CD's that are offered by Kimbo. Don't get stuck on doing perfect choreography, but grab those parts that you can do and have a ball! The children don't mind repetition and they don't care if we make mistakes. They just love moving and their bodies and brains will thank you.

Dancingly yours,
Miss LeAnn


LeAnn Haggard is a new author for Kimbo Educational, and her debut CD "Feel the Beat" is an exercise and dance extravaganza. Usable, movable, easy, choreographed routines that disguise "working out" have been done to original music that exercises the body-brain combo! The good news is that the CD also has some challenging routines for those teachers of 7-9 year olds as well as narrative-free tracks with all kinds of other ideas for many successful movement classes.

LeAnn has a Bachelor's degree in Physical Education, Health and Dance which makes her expertise so important to pre-school, primary, and physical education teachers in those molding and shaping years.

Previous Tips

•  Using Music and Movement To Encourage Healthier Children
   Activity Tips (5/08) - Bridgid Junot, UNM, CHILE Project

•  Moving to Math
   Activity Tips (9/07) - Pam Schiller

•  Take a Movement Break and Switch On Your Brain - with RONNO!
   Activity Tips (10/06) - RONNO

•  Ways to Teach Children Through Music and Movement
   Activity Tips - RONNO

•  Alliteration
   Activity Tips (2/06) - Pam Schiller, Ph.D.

•  A Case for Laughing Giggling and Having Fun 
   Activity Tips (11/05) - Pam Schiller, Ph.D.

•  Connecting Music and Literacy
   Activity Tips (8/05) - Pam Schiller, Ph.D.

•  The Learning Station: Teaching with Songs in Your Heart
   Activity Tips (7/04) - Laurie Monopoli

•  Bean Bag
   Activity Tips (3/04) - Christina Chapman

•  Activities to Integrate Music and Language Arts
   Activity Tips (8/03) - Cindy H. Clark, MMed, MT-BC

Activity Tips for Special Needs and Young Children