This Land is Your Land
This Land is My Land,
To the New York Island
From the Redwood Forests
to the Gulf Stream Waters
This Land is Made for me and you….
A song from the 1940’s by Woodie Guthrie, and one that I sing to my elderly clients very often as a reminiscence tool. This tune is so popular that a friend of mine R. Seidel, RMT – – has revised the lyrics and composed new ones for a fun song teaching young kids to identify their eyes, nose, ears, etc. I have used it for many a sing-along with young pre-school kids in my work. Here’s how part of the song goes: (sung to the tune of “This Land is Your Land”)
“This hand is your hand; It has five fingers; Wiggle them around now; And feel them tingle; Raise them above you; And then below you; This hand is yours and only yours.
This foot is your foot; It has five toes; Wiggle them around now: Do your socks have holes; Tap them on the floor now (tap, tap, tap..); Now make them stop; This foot is yours and only yours” (copyright 1994- R. Seidel, RMT)
Now that’s a powerful statement for any kid to hear – especially in song. Keep your hands to yourself. Keep your feet to yourself. They are yours. G-d gave them to you to enjoy, use and treasure. You are blessed.
I think one of the most important things in raising kids (not my job anymore) and in nurturing grandkids (I love that job these days) is enhancing their self image, making them feel good about themselves and helping them realize their specialness and uniqueness.
We all are different. Each one of us has a unique way of seeing things – doing stuff, and handling life. That’s a great lesson for children – and for adults to remind ourselves of each day.