I know what you’re thinking: the Safety Harbor Public Library is not a playground. I know that, but when it feels like the triple digits outside playing inside is where it’s at! Last Thursday, it offered a special free music class for the under-five set called Music with Mar. (http://musicwithmar.com). I’ve seen these classes advertised, so I figured we should check out a free one first.
Music with Mar. was developed to provide quality, brain-based music to children and families. Henry and I were underwhelmed by the class. The music wasn’t loud enough to hear over the din of 20 or more kids and their parents/grandparents. Most of the kids just sat around, swaying to the music. The songs were unoriginal like a lot of children’s songs can be, and the music wasn’t really fun to dance to. Henry tried his usual dance moves, as well as following directions in the songs, but ultimately opened the door and walked out.
Luckily, the children’s department of the library was awesome to make up for the fairly lame music class. It had puzzles, games, magnetic boats, and a fantastic Thomas the Train set that Henry couldn’t stop playing. He’s obsessed with trains right now so it was perfect. The library also had a great art corner set up where kids could be creative – stamp pads, markers, play dough, chalkboards, and more. I had to pry Henry away from it all to head home for lunch. Since he took a three hour nap, I’d consider our alternative playground visit a success!
Henry and I spend most Thursday mornings at “Wiggle, Giggle, and Sing” at the Seminole Community Library. The program itself starts at 10:30, but beginning at 10am there are toys for the under-five set to play with and get some energy out. It’s a nice way to ease into the chaos that is 30+ toddlers and their caregivers dancing around. The class consists of 10-15 minutes of movement-based songs, then 10 minutes of dancing with beanbags, handkerchiefs, or a parachute, and 5-10 minutes of playing with musical instruments.
The Hen’s fav dance move is spinning, always spinning. He can totally do what the songs are talking about, but he’d much rather spin in circles. I don’t know how he never gets dizzy. He also loves playing with the musical instruments, especially the coffee can drums. He can drum and spin at the same time, yet somehow trips when standing still. It makes no sense. He’s starting to sing along with the songs (any song he loves, actually) – his current favorites are “Swim to Stay Strong” and “Shake Your Sillies Out.”
Afterwards, we either color or do the craft of the week, read a few books (trucks, trucks, and more trucks these days), and play with the puppets in the puppet theater. Henry and the other kids mostly throw the puppets from the ledge and hide behind the curtain while giggling excitedly. It’s pretty adorable. We finish by eating a snack outside at the picnic tables because all that playing builds up quite an appetite. Yogurt raisins and oranges are usually the perfect combination. Today we had two special guests with us – my parents, Grandma and Grandpop to Henry, are visiting for a couple days. Henry thought reading with Grandma was the best part of it all.