November can be a bit of a manic month. Most people start their Christmas preparations now, and it can feel a little overwhelming to think of everything that needs doing. Little ones are also full of coughs and sneezes at this time of year, and you can find yourself stuck inside a little bit, keeping out of the cold. There is a sense of anticipation in the air though, which is very exciting! Children will still be looking for lots of things to do, despite the cold weather and your endless to-do list. Have a go at some of these Autumn music activities this November:
1. Make shakers
As you explore the outside at this time of year, you’ll notice how many dry materials there are to be found. Twigs, seeds, dead leaves, conkers, stones, acorns – the ground is littered with them. Entice your children to explore the different materials by making shakers from them.
Use robust containers to ensure they won’t split. Cylindrical containers such as cocoa powder tins are usually quite sturdy, and will make a good sound when filled with interesting materials. Vary the contents, filling them with things you find together, and seal up the containers using duck tape. Cover with white or coloured paper, and let your toddler help you to decorate them with lovely autumnal colours, stickers, and ribbons.
Enjoy making some music together, shaking your new shakers!
2. Make a ribbon ring
Now it is getting dark earlier, there are more hours to fill indoors. You’re no longer able to stay in the park until dinnertime, and it’s the late afternoon that can be most challenging with toddlers – you feel like you’ve run out of ideas, and they are starting to get grumpy!
Have a go at making a ribbon ring. They are so easy to make, and little ones will love to help you choose which colours to use. Offer them a variety of oranges, reds, and browns, to create a lovely autumn ring. Use wooden rings, and tie long lengths of coloured ribbon to them, sealing the ends with a lighter. They make such a lovely sensory tool – perfect for dancing around with and putting on a show.
This one from Buggy and Buddy is a lovely example:
3. Go On A Bear Hunt
If you’re not familiar with the Michael Rosen book, ‘We’re Going on a Bear Hunt’, it’s definitely one to invest in. It tells the story of a family who go hunting for bears! They’re not scared at all, as they have to swish through long grass, splash through a deep river, squelch through thick mud, stumble through a big forest, fight through a swirling snowstorm, until they find a gloomy cave. They tiptoe in and find……a bear!! They run back through all the obstacles they’ve come across, charging back home, up the stairs, and under the bed covers.
It’s such a great story for imaginative play. It is full of onomatopoeia, wonderful descriptions, and exciting concepts. Michael Rosen has even recorded a song to accompany it:
Explore this story together this month, in the following ways:
- Listen to the song and offer lots of percussion instruments to make the sound effects together. Move around the room, changing your movements as you pretend to move through each obstacle.
- Head to the park and sing each verse as you search for the materials you need to recreate the story. Swish through some long grass, splash in big puddles, and squelch through some mud.
Autumn Music: November Playlist