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Improvisation (improv) Sessions with Your Little Ones

I don’t know about all of you other moms and dads out there, but improvisation has become a necessary skill at my house. I
image of adult reading to child
never thought that I would be able to use a skill like that (since I take time to process my thoughts), but sometimes children push the scope of our talents. Children use improvisation all the time while playing. I use improv at bedtime. Our nightly routine looks like this:
  • Take a bath or shower
  • Sit on the sofa and read one story for each child
  • Off to bed for each of them
  • I go and “snuggle” with each one for about 10 minutes
During that time, I have always sung them a song. Now, when they were babies, it was much easier. “Twinkle, twinkle little star” and “You are my sunshine” were staple lullabies, along with some French songs like “Frere Jacques” and “Les petits poissons”. Even when they are too young to understand all of the words, it will help develop their language skills, and the tone will sooth them. But now that my kids are older, they seem to want improv. I am not afraid to say that I am not great at it, but at least I can sing pretty well! Typically, my little girl wants princess songs, and my little boy wants dinosaur or transformer songs. Now if you are like me, you don’t have much time to go learn the entire Disney princess lyrics, so improv is my only way to satisfy the audience. I end up with things like: I’m a little princess Cute and sweet Here are my shoes And here are my feet When I twirl around I am pretty as can be Won’t you come and play with me (Sung to the tune of “I’m a little teapot”) It is fun to try and great to see the smiles on the little one’s faces. It is also great to see how good your rhyming skills are! You will probably end up laughing yourself, something that we adults need to do more of – especially with our kids. Why don’t you try a bit of improv with your little one? It can be in the form of song, stories, games, plays, or dance. Have fun! ~Sonya
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16 comments

  • My husband is the one who is good at improv stories…not sure what I’m going to do when he leaves on deployment next spring…lol!

    Rebecca Tucker on
  • nice!

    Alena on
  • I improvise with my little girl. Her nickname is Monkey, and I sing her “You are my Monkey” to the tune of “You are my Sunshine”!

    Elisabeth on
  • My son loves music, so I tend to improvise songs for brushing teeth. Sometimes the distraction is enough that the thrashing around is reduced somewhat.

    Marcelaine on
  • That’s an awesome song! I’ll remember that one.
    I don’t have any toddlers yet, but last summer my 4 nieces came to stay and they wanted all kinds of stories improved. I’m HORRIBLE at it. But it was fun to tell them a story that was so lame and probably didn’t make sense and watch them still be amused and want more stories the next night. I’m having a baby … any day now … but I’m already excited to get to the toddler stage for this reason.

    Brittany on

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