Hip Hop Baby

June 30, 2008 10:42:14 AM PDT
A Chicago area mother is combining hip hop beats with familiar lyrics to help children with language disorders communicate. She has released a DVD called "It's Hip Hop Baby." It's become a fun way to help children build essential skills. Candi Carter and her son, Emerson, often grew frustrated when he couldn't communicate. Emerson was born with a severe speech disorder.

"We were at an impasse," said Carter. "He was 3 and literally would scream all day. I always have a song in my head, so I just started beat boxing to distract him . . . and then make up a 'Walk with Mommy' song and a 'Bathtime' song to see if he would follow me if it was fun-and he did."

Carter said the songs helped Emerson with transitions and prevented tantrums. "It did something to help him learn; he'd remember because of the hip-hop and beat box sound." When she saw how well her son was responding, Carter wanted to help more children learn through music and movement.

Thus, "It's Hip Hop, Baby!"-a lively, interactive 22-minute DVD-was born. For children ages 2 to 6, "It's Hip Hop, Baby!" ($15.95 at itshiphopbaby.com) gets kids moving with energetic takes on classics such as "Simon Says."

Although her son's speech delay was a catalyst for "It's Hip Hop, Baby!" Carter pointed out that "you can accelerate any child's learning with these concepts."

Carter says "If you combine [music] with educational content, you've got accelerated learning. Something that would take a child several flash cards to learn becomes part of their 'fun' play, and they learn it faster."

For example, a segment called Hip-Hop Simon "teaches children how to follow simple instructions," and the song's catchy beat makes sure the lesson keeps looping though a child's mind.

When you hear the lyrics "Hip-Hop Simon says 'Jump, Jump,' " your children aren't the only ones in the air.

Carter will expand the series with three more DVDS in the fall.

Emerson is now 5 and loves the songs "I've Been Working on the Railroad," "Wheels on the Bus," "Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes" and the "It's Hip Hop, Baby!" theme song.

"The songs helped him forget that he was frustrated," Carter said. "If I can unlock something with my own child through music, anyone can."

For information, visit itshiphopbaby.com

TASTE OF CHICAGO TIMES:

They will be at the "Fun Time Stage"

Wednesday July 2nd

Dance along, Sing alongs at 11:30am, 1:30pm, 3:30pm -children can come on stage and sing their favorite songs like ABC's, Head Shoulders Knees and Toes with family friend hip hop beats!

DVD's can be purchased at the taste in the Best Buy Tent or at itshiphopbaby.com.


Load Comments