As a mom (and teacher), I strive everyday to engage, nurture, and expand the mind of my little one.
Here you will find the books, music, and activities most useful to me in my endeavors.

Sunday, September 27, 2009


There once was a mom of a sweet little tot
Many a kid's music CD she has bought
When from across the sea
New tunes just for me
A love for Sing-Alongs I've certainly caught

I'm writing silly limericks. I am craving a big bowl of Lucky Charms! (And I don't think it's just some weird pregnancy craving!) I've met a troop of leprechauns Irishmen, and they are quite talented. I've danced a jig. I've laughed with my lassy. I've even spotted a rainbow or two ... and that pot of gold comes in the form of some really great kid-friendly music ... and this discovery wasn't made at my local library (as are most of my music-finds).

No, this CD found me from all the way across the sea - an island off Ireland to be more exact. I received a delightful email from a guy named Quince. He likened his music to "Riverdance for toddlers" and said his bandmates would be "like cows jumping over the moon with delight," if I would accept a copy of their debut CD! How could I possibly refuse an offer like that?

Sing-Along Songs from Glasses Island by the Speks

The CD is a collection of traditional songs - mainly nursery rhymes - with musical arrangement that is really unique and delightful. I am mesmerized, and a bit enamored, by the instrumentation - fiddle, banjo, flutes, and others I am sure I can't even name. The familiarity of the songs makes singing along, well, easy and fun for adults and kiddos. But it's the Irish flair that gets my toes tapping and my face smiling ... and occasionally a leprechaun accent used :) We've listened to these songs in the car and during dinner-making hour, a tough time of day for toddlers ... but I've found this music puts us both in a good mood!

The band's website is very, very well-done ... and I am kind of hard to please in that department. The design is clean and simple. The content is high-quality. That's about the best combination I can hope for in a website! Obviously, there's a link to listen to their songs - for free - called Our Jukebox. But what I am most impressed by is the Teaching Notes section. Talk about an unexpected little pot of gold at the end of an already wonderful rainbow! Each song is linked to an explanation of the arrangement, activity suggestions, and the lyrics. And as I told Quince, "As a mommy and a teacher, I certainly appreciate entertainment that is also educational."

Hey, Hey Did Someone Say Giveaway?

The Speks were so generous and sent me two copies of their debut album - one for me and one for Natalie ... however, this seems like the perfect opportunity to give my toddler some practice with the concept of sharing, I've decided to SHARE GIVE her copy to one of you!

Here's your first of many chances to win, win, win ... Natalie's your very own copy of ...
Sing-Along Songs from Glasses Island by the Speks

Giveaway - 1st Chance: Go visit their website - - and get to know these guys a little better: watch a video, listen to a few songs, or read a few of the Teaching Notes. Come back here and leave a FIRST IMPRESSION COMMENT.

All of the other CHANCES (5 in all) ask you a simple - Irish-related - question.
Click to go to the other posts.
Giveaway - 2nd Chance
Giveaway ends Sunday, October 4th at midnight PST. If you leave a comment, please make sure I have a way of contacting you.
Start with a limerick, end with a proverb, that's what I always say ...
“Your feet will bring you to where your heart is.”


BJ_Mama said...

complete disclosure: I danced a jig....or I tried anyway.

Oliver'sMom said...

Ummmmm...HELLO!!!!!!!!! My favorite band on the planet is Gaelic Storm. Anything I can do to also foster the fanatic need to hear fiddle and bodhran first thing in the morning in "me boyo" is on my list to buy!

I love that they let you download some of the songs, it's just enought to get you to want to purchase more. LOVE Baby's Dish, it's a traditional Irish lullabye and I haven't been able to find any versions I liked until this one.

How exactly did you get an e-mail from this guy? Is he using mommmy blogs to get the word out? SMART

Miss Mel said...

First impression is Maggie getting clapping and jumping around with the music. Really gets your feet moving :)

Sara said...

Hi Dana!

Love your blogs. I so enjoy reading what is going on in your world!

My Logan enjoyed the songs! He did his 16 month old version of jig!


Epiphius said...

holy cow! They have teaching notes! Awesome!

Chi-town momma said...

Some of those songs take me back to my childhood...Michael Finnegan :) Fun tunes.

Jessica said...

Some of these are really great. The "Skipping Song" rhyme is one we do at library story time, but I love having it set to music. Will recommend their site to the library teacher!

Also loved "Homeward Bound" as it gets faster, but wanted to tell them that for Classroom Ideas, they could do it as music for musical chairs. The kids would know when it was going to stop, but that would be part of the fun, especially for younger munchkins.

Great find! Can't wait to play it for SP tomorrow. :-)