Do you remember the "toy boat" tongue twister? When I was in elementary school, classmates and I would try to say the words "toy boat" five times as quickly as we could. Three reps in would get to "toy boyt" every time. On the other hand, I remember singing freely during my only-child alone time. I sang stories to myself, narrated whatever may have happened to me during my day, or made singing games out of my chores. Though I don't remember any of those early original songs, I know for certain that singing was a key part of my speech development. To support with my students' mastery of tricky sounds, I created a couple of originals.
These are kid-friendly songs, but I hope they are fun to hear at all ages 🤩
Song for "Ch" (lyrics here) supports mastery of the "ch" sound as distinct from "z" and "sh." It is inspired by the train song (above) and the Riddle Song, which my parents used to sing to me as a lullaby. To listen, click on the song title and press the "play" arrow on the new pop-up window. Trouble loading? Try this.
Train on the Track (lyrics here) rehearses the consonant sounds "K" and "L" in the tricky cluster that begins "clickety clack" . To listen, click on the song title and press the "play" arrow on the new pop-up window. Trouble loading? Try this.
These are both live recordings and I hope you enjoy their authentic feeling (a.k.a. unedited quirks ;)
P.S. These songs and more are on SoundCloud. Follow me on Instagram.
I would not try to fuel my car by shifting gears. But as a new singer I did just that. Like many people, I tried to use muscles in my face and jaw to create sound.
My students learn that the body is made to sing using three different mechanisms:
Whether or not your life goals include singing, practicing extended exhales can bring inner steadiness. Start with the humming sound "mmmmmmmmmm." After a relaxed in breath, send a hum out on any tone (there is no ‘correct’ pitch) and keep going for as long as you like. When finished, enjoy the relative silence of your simple breaths.
This PDF can help you remember to try this whenever you have a spare minute and a need for peace. (Playful Mindful Stress Tamers).
Looking for more support with singing? Right now I have openings in my online studio, and am working on a central online portal for singers (hear our in-person recordings here).
Elisabeth C. Swim
Playful Mindful Music Guide