Character Education is something I am always looking to add to our school day- sure, some things like saying please and thank you are easy to teach through example, but every once in a while we come across a situation where i’d like to provide extra teaching to really make a difference. Happy Kids Songs is a program that makes teaching character, social and emotional skills easy through the use of catchy (mom-approved!) songs. For this review, I was sent three downloadable albums, Friends and Sharing, Happiness and Attitude, and Manners and Character, and the Happy Kids Songs Workbook: Hands-on Activities to Build Character, Social & Emotional Skills to accompany the music.
Happy Kids Songs was created by Dr. Mac, a child psychologist, who took the time to figure out the kind of music kids like, and combined catchy rhythms with meaningful lyrics. The result is songs that are not only full of positive messages, they are also musically quite good, and pleasant to listen to (as long as you don’t mind kids singing).
Here are some of the song lyrics:
“ ’cause you can get more freedom, you can get more respect, and a little more trust, is just what you’d expect, with a little bit of… Honesty!”
“commitment means that you’ll never have a doubt, when the going get’s tough, you work things out”
“so say good things to yourself, because you and everybody else need kindness, be good to yourself”
Good stuff right? Now, put these good thoughts to happy songs, and you’ve got Happy Kid Songs. I wish I could play them for you, but since I can’t embed them here, I hope you head over to the website and check out the samples there!
If you get the workbook, everything you need is in one place, instead of having to download a couple pages from here and there- which is a time saver. Inside the book, you’ll find song lyrics, coloring pages, and activity ideas to take the songs one step farther. For example, to go along with the honesty song I quoted above, the program suggests having your kids interview others about why it’s important to be honest, and document the answers. It also suggests playing a couple games to reinforce the importance of being honest, like “two truths and a lie” and playing charades.
As a secular homeschooler, I am more than thrilled to have discovered Happy Kids Songs. Non-religious secular character education resources are actually really hard to come by on the homeschool market, and this product not only fits the bill, it’s also fun and very well done. I don’t think homeschoolers who prefer christian resources would find anything objectionable here, as many of the lessons (if not all) also can be found in scripture.
These songs have become a staple in our home. I wasn’t able to burn them to a CD yet (which would make the program much easier to use on the road or during the school day) since my stuff has all been packed up for the move, but we have been able to enjoy the songs straight from the laptop.
For this review period, we have enjoyed the songs in an informal way, but I have grand plans to use them more deliberately during the school year, perhaps focusing on one song a week, singing it during circle time (and playing it during the day as we feel inclined!) and following up with the workbook pages and other activities.
Each Happy Kids Songs album is 4.95
The workbook is available for 12.50
This product is recommended for kids 3-8