Teaching Time Concepts With Music

When you have a child with a disability, teaching concepts of time can be difficult. Music is an excellent way to introduce this concept and help your child understand the passage of time.

There are many songs about the changing seasons, and with the holidays coming music is a great way to communicate that time is passing and seasons are changing. Play or sing your favorite holiday songs with your child. In winter, there are many songs about snow and holidays you can use. In the spring, use songs about flowers, rain, and springtime. Summer has many songs to choose from (Beach Boys, anyone?). You can also use patriotic songs for the 4th of July or songs about vacations. And in the fall, use songs about school, the changing colors of the leaves, State Fairs or Halloween.

If you have access to a switch, like a Big Mac (AbleNet), your child can sing with you. Record a phrase of a song that repeats often in music, like “Daylight come and me wanna go home” on the switch and then sing “The Banana Boat Song” with your family, allowing your child to “sing” the last phrase of each line by pressing the switch.

You can also use music to help teach times of day. Sing a wake up song as you get your child dressed in the morning or play a recording of some upbeat music. Use the same song or recording each morning to help establish the routine. Soon your child will equate that song with waking up and morning time. Use soothing songs and lullabies at bedtime. Select songs or CDs for different times of day or different parts of your daily routine to help your child understand the rhythm of your day.

If you would like suggestions about what kind of music to use to help your child understand concepts of time, contact me.