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COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL 2 Introduction opportunities to experience success. If children are asked to respond to chal- lenges that they could not possibly be comfortable with or are not prepared for, the result is intimidation and a lot of blank stares. No wonder—that would be comparable to asking a fledgling ballet student to perform a perfectly executed tour en l’air (turn in the air) without first acquainting her or him with the basic balletic skills! Children need opportunities to explore movement on their own, to find and use their own personal rhythms, so not all of the activities in this book are accompanied by music. However, children do love music—and it does contribute much to movement experiences—so it is included wherever it can make a contribution to the learning experience. The songs that are part of this program are almost entirely original, having been written specifically for the activities they accompany. (Activities using music have been marked with a musical note: .) The songs make it possible for you to add the joy and energy of music to movement experiences without the effort of having to first locate appropriate music. They also make it possible for the children to better under- stand such abstract concepts as slow and fast, light and heavy, and bound and free. These songs expose the children to both electronic and acoustic instru- ments and to as many musical elements (for example, tempo, volume, and so on) as I could manage to include. Variety is what I believe in, and variety is what this curriculum offers the children, and you! Every activity in Preschoolers & Kindergartners includes some simple ques- tions to help you evaluate whether or not the children are meeting the activity’s objectives. The Curriculum Connectors feature points out ways in which the activity correlates, or can be made to correlate, with other content areas. While it is my firm belief that the body is the most important piece of equipment in movement experiences, I realize that using actual equipment can add another dimension to—and increase the challenge of—an activity. So, where appropriate, I have included a section called Adding Equipment, offering suggestions for the use of hoops, scarves, streamers, and other props generally available in early childhood classrooms. COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL