Sing Your Heart Out

The way you measure a society’s soul is by the way that it treats its children.
Nelson Mandela

Kidz Newz #166 – 28 February 2018

Welcome to Kidz Newz, especially all new subscribers including those from the recent ASME Summer School in Perth. Kidz Newz is a regular newsletter with information and teaching tips for anyone involved with young children. You are receiving this because you have attended one of my workshops, purchased a book, or you have requested to be on the mailing list. Thank you. Please forward this to anyone you feel it may be of interest to. Feedback is welcome. Don’t forget to stay in touch on our Facebook Page and watch out for our exclusive fan page competitions.

Sing Your Heart Out

I read all sorts of articles on health and this one was all about heart health and the connection with singing! It comes from cardiologist Dr Steven Gundry MD. This is what he says –

‘…singing enhances something called: heart rate variability, or HRV (basically, the small differences in time between your heart beats).  Now, your HRV is incredibly important. It’s a telling sign of your heart’s overall health. If there’s too much variability between your heart beats, it puts a ton of stress on your heart. And over time, that can lead to some serious danger. But when there’s more balance between each beat, that gives your most important organ the time it needs to “catch its breath.”

So, how does singing factor into your heart rate variability? Well, singing is all about breathing. When you sing, your breaths become bigger, deeper, and slower. And in the process, these tiny “in between” beats begin to slow down. Basically, it provides a “dose” of calm to your heart. According to my colleague, Dr. Björn Vickhoff:

“Song is a form of regular, controlled breathing, since breathing out occurs on the song phrases and inhaling takes place between these, it gives you pretty much the same effect as yoga breathing. It helps you relax, and there are indications that it does provide a heart benefit.”

Who would’ve thought singing your favorite song could have such amazing heart health benefits?’

Who would have thought indeed! So next time it’s too wet, hot or otherwise inclement outside for the children to run around, get them singing their hearts out. Dr Gundry’s reference is here –

Vickhoff, B., Malmgren, H., Åström, R., et. al., Music structure determines heart rate variability of singers. Frontiers in Psychology. 2013; 4: 334. DOI: 10.3389/fpsyg.2013.00334

ASME Summer School

It was wonderful to meet so many new people and reconnect with ‘old buddies’ at this event last month. I have presented at Summer School many times and what I always find is a relaxed yet upbeat atmosphere. Everyone is so excited to be there, to share, to learn, to network and to have fun. The most telling aspect of all is that it is held during the long summer holidays when everyone is refreshed and recovered from the Christmas celebrations and not quite yet into back-to-school mode. It is noticeably different from the usual conference atmosphere.

You do not have to be a music specialist to attend these events. In fact, I think you come from a different perspective when you do so. I cannot recommend the Summer School enough, irrespective of whether you are a music specialist or class teacher. This year there was a big section on early childhood music but there’s always something for everyone – including getting your kids singing! If your school doesn’t have a music specialist, get in touch with an organisation like ASME (the Australian Society for Music Education) or an equivalent in your country, and find out how to get started. Not every child will take to playing an instrument but everyone can sing.

Back to School Specials

You need to email me directly to get these specials as they won’t appear on the website – or phone me in Australia on 0410 642 781. These will last only until Friday 16 March.

Free with any purchase – a Scarf Magic DVD (valued at $13.75)

Free with a 20 set or 30 set Scarf Bag – a Scarf Magic Pack (valued at $27.50)

Half Price KFB Multicultural Book with full price KFB Learning Through Drama, Dance and Song (save $42.50)

Save $10.00 on Books –

Nurturing Kids’ hearts and souls (Maggie Dent) – $25.00 (was $35.00)

The DEAL for Happier, Healthier, Smarter Kids (Dr Peter Dingle) – $25.00 (was $35.00)

Help Your Class to Learn (Barbara Pheloung) – $19.50 (was $29.50)

New Year – New Website

Check out my new website! Feel free to have a browse and take advantage of the freebie on the home page. Go here –

Quote of the Week

A bird does not sing because it has an answer. It sings because it has a song. Chinese proverb.

Use what talent you possess: the woods would be very silent if no birds sang except those that sang best.   Henry Van Dyke

Excellence can be obtained if you care more than others think is wise, risk more than others think is safe, dream more than others think is practical, and expect more than others think is possible. source unknown


What would you tell other people about this presentation?

Yes! Do it!
Beautiful end to the day – buy some scarves!
How it all works.
Highly recommended.
Good music. Buy some scarves!
Beautiful and fun.
It’s do-able!
Wealth of knowledge. Great ideas.
Great for confidence building with music and movement – it’s not too hard!
It was fun and engaging.
Very useful.
Eye-opening to see what can be done with scarves to teach music/dance/drama to children.
Very easy.
The presenter is wonderful. Teaches with patience.
Next time I’ll wear pants!
Great ideas. Very helpful notes!


Have fun while you sing and add a little drama. Enjoy! Click here.

About The Author

Marlene Rattigan B.A., Dip. Ed. (ECS), CELTA

Marlene Rattigan is an Early Childhood teacher, a teacher of English as a Second Language, and from 1987-2000 was a nationally accredited fitness leader. Her background is in music education. A keen interest in motor development in children led to the creation of Kidz-Fiz-Biz which she taught successfully for 13 years. Marlene also conducts workshops for children, teachers and parents at schools, in the community and at festivals. She has produced teaching manuals complete with audio CDs which are an extension of her ‘Kidz-Fiz-Biz’ program.

PO Box 6894, East Perth WA 6892 Australia
T: +61 8 9355 4890 M: +61 (0) 410 64 2781 E:

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Until next time … continue being a legend in your classroom.

Marlene Rattigan, Editor
Kidz Newz

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