The following review is by contributor Jennifer Brown.
In many places we’re hitting what they call the dog days of summer. It’s hot and the fresh summer air may be starting to feel a little stale. Summer days still stretch ahead of us, and if your family is like ours you may be in need of a little pick me up.
The other day I was searching for just that to boost our spirits, and I was reminded of how important it is to make music a part of our day. I had gotten out of the habit of making music a part of our daily ritual since we moved way back in December. A new set up in a new home somehow changed our family rhythm, and we needed to get that back!
We jumped into it (literally) with a new favorite song “No More Monkeys” which can be found on Putumayo’s Animal Playground collection. If you’re looking to escape those dog days of summer, this collection of animal inspired tunes is a terrific way for the whole family to laugh, sing and dance their hearts out.
This album is full of upbeat tunes by artists from around the world that will get you up and moving. Not only can you find us jumping around like monkeys, we’re shaking the ants out of our pants with the title track “Animal Crackers,” looking out for “The Littlest Birds” and heeding the warning: “Don’t Ever Step on a Snake.”
This is a fun collection with a great mix of sung and instrumental international tunes, some which may surprise you as sounding familiar. Not only is this a quality compilation album as you would expect from Putumayo, it’s also a great way to get exposure to some new artists. I, personally, am looking forward to checking out more of the Wee Hairy Beasties—don’t they just sound like fun?
If boosting your spirits wasn’t enough reason to put on the stereo in the middle of a blah day, did you know listening to music can also help your child learn to read? Singing songs, hearing/telling stories, inventing and repeating rhymes or moving to a steady beat are all part of pre-reading skills that help children learn to identify syllables and their sounds. (http://highscope.org/)
So, whether you’re stuck at home (again), or in the car on your way to get (yet another) big stack of books for your summer reading program don’t forget to crank up the music, and include Putumayo’s Animal Crackers on your rotation.
Trust me; you’ll be much happier when you get the ants out of your pants!
Do you use music in your family to boost morale on a blue day? Do you seek out something new or pull out your old favorites? What songs get everyone smiling in your house?