Last week when the grandchildren were visiting we went to the outlet mall to get new shoes. K.J. is eight and Kalina is almost three, so with five years between them you’d think they wouldn’t fight in the back seat. Wrong!! She’d instigate something and then he’d get her going. I said, “Let’s put the baby to bed” and we started doing the finger play below. We made this game last about 15 minutes until we got to the mall because they had to keep coming up with solutions and inserting them in the rhyme. (Some of their suggestions were actually funny and nobody wanted to change the stinky diaper!) Instead of screeching and poking in the back seat, their hands were busy, their mouths were under control, and they were using problem solving skills. I could even have tied this into Core Standards (oral language, retell a story, answer questions) and 21st Century Skills (critical thinking). Children of all ages want to be entertained and engaged. And if you don’t focus them with something positive, then they will poke and prod and entertain themselves in negative ways. So, if you have a few extra minutes today, “put the baby to bed” and see what happens!
Put the Baby to Bed
Now it’s time to go to sleep (Hold up right index finger.)
Put the baby to bed. (Place index finger on left palm)
Cover the baby in the bed. (Wrap left fingers around right index.)
Kiss the baby good-night. (Pretend to kiss finger.)
Waaa! Waaa! (Hold up right index finger and cry.)
The baby’s awake!
What can we do?
(Insert children’s suggestions and continue the rhyme. For example, give it a bottle, change its diapers, give it a toy, read a book, etc.)
*Write the children’s suggestions on the board. How many ways can they come up with to pacify the baby?