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Chiropractic and sensory development in children: interview with pediatric chiropractor Sébastien Cras

Sébastien Cras, can you talk about your profession?
I am a chiropractor based in the Basque Country, in Bayonne. Chiropractic is an excellent remedy to identify and combat spinal problems, but not only! In particular I deal with Chiropractic Functional Neurology. Pregnant women, newborns, children, adults, athletes, the elderly, all they require treatment to prevent or recover physical, chemical or emotional injuries. These last 3 aspects are actually related and my job is to bring patients back to an optimal balance and posture.

Functional neurology … where to start?
Everything starts in the belly of the mother, in the embryonic phase! Tens of thousands of neurons are created every day, as well as their interconnection. The optimization of this mechanism is essential in the first years of life, because in adulthood the creation of neurons slows down. It is for this reason that any stimulation in the fetus and in the child will allow to multiply the neuronal connections and to maintain their activity. Stimulations can be physical (motoric), chemical (food, micronutrition) and psycho-affective. They touch all the senses: taste, smell, sight, touch, but also hearing!
Before planting vegetables in a vegetable garden the soil is prepared, weeds are removed, the soil is nourished … in the same way the chiropractic “cleans” and optimizes the nervous system of a child so that he can understand stimulation, assimilate and then promote good posture, good motor skills, good concentration, good learning ability, etc.

In concrete terms, how can we stimulate children every day?
One of the first roles of the nervous system is movement. This is innate and should not be blocked. For example, bandaging a child deprives him of free motor skills and does not promote brain development. It is certainly better to leave a child on a mat than on a recliner. In this way he will be able to move, turn his head when he hears a sound and associate it with an image. He will also be able to touch what surrounds him without movement restrictions. Surely even the sounds will have a stimulating role: the noises of the house and of the outside, the voices of his entourage, the music are all factors that will participate in the multiplication of neurons!

Do you think Ocarina Player can play an interesting role in this stimulation?
Sure! The variety of sounds and sound frequencies promote a quantitative and qualitative creation of neurons and their connections. Ocarina also allows children to develop their autonomy thanks to simplified navigation and listening on the go.
A small personal advice to all of Ocarina lovers and users: enter into the player many and different tracks to offer children a wide range of rhythms, genres, languages and sounds!

* Sébastien Cras is a chiropractor for children and a professional in Kinesiology. He carries out his profession in Bayonne in France. Here you can find more information about him and his business.

MUSICAL CON-TACT

Since the prenatal period, the fetus is able to perceive the noises, the sounds and the voices not only through the auditory apparatus but also through the sensations received by the whole body, through the vibrations.
his ability to recognize the mother’s voice in the seventh month of pregnancy and to prefer it to others immediately after birth is now widely demonstrated, as well as recognizing the melodies that were heard during the gestational period or the songs that were sung.
The maternal voice, the contact, the sound, represent a bridge and a link that can give continuity between the prenatal and the postnatal life and act as reassurance for the newborn in an external world that is still unknown to him.
The voice, as a tool of relationship, is a channel of connection and tuning with the other and baby-talking, in particular, represents an emotional-musical dialogue and mutual co-regulation. Through this prosody, but also through the visuo-facial communication, contact and gestures, parent and child mark a rhythm, as in a dance, where the behavior of each one is modulated and modified mutually to adapt to each other.
The rearing and the relationship have a rhythm. There are sounds and there are silences, there are times and there are pauses. There is a trend, a cadence, a regularity, as in music. This represents a non-verbal, emotional and relational communication channel, which can become one of the tools through which to establish contact with your child. It can accompany particular moments of daily life to create rituals that reassure him during his growth phases, strengthening the exchange network with the adult and the emotional bond that grows day by day.
A relaxing melody can help to calm and attenuate the states of tension, reducing the levels of activation of the organism (heartbeat, breathing, blood pressure, etc.) or create an atmosphere to share cuddles and tenderness; a lullaby can accompany and guide the child during drowsiness and sleep; a nursery rhyme or a little song can become a moment of discovery, play, stimulation and learning.
Singing and listening to music together becomes an opportunity for exchanging and sharing that allows the child to develop different skills, not only related to communication and language, but also linked to attention, concentration, memory, the psycho-emotional sphere and relational.

Bringing the music in my world of professional psychologist and teacher of infant massage as a facilitator tool to develop relationship has been natural and has enriched the experience of the post-childbirth groups, making them even more unique and special.
During the massage everyone learns to listen to their own feelings and that of the other, learn to observe others and themselves, to move and stop depending on the needs and necessities of each: the music can become an additional channel of connection with the baby.
The touch and the contact can be accompanied by background music that can be modulated and chosen according to the moment, the preferences and the mood.
The effect of touch and contact penetrates within the person and spreads throughout the body. At the same time, music penetrates through the vibrations and the sensations it provokes, spreading in the area and creating an atmosphere of well-being and pleasure. It can become a sort of “emotional and sensorial container” that amplifies and makes the experience lived with your children even more complete, where every moment is marked by sounds and silences that involve the whole sensory system. The melody can help to achieve a state of calm and relaxation, the silences allows to listen to the breath, the vocalizations of your child, the cry, reaching a tune, an intimacy and an even stronger complicity.
The parent and the child can thus live their daily meeting, their being together in the “here and now”, enveloped in a sound sphere, building their baggage of experiences and musical memories, unique, special and personal that will accompany them to all the way in their life.

Learning in freedom: Experiences about Children’s Active Education between game, music and nature

“Help me do it alone.” On this principle are based the methods of active education that the child does not have to be spectator of the learning process but protagonist.
Through experience, space exploration, building and destroying, relationship with others, the little one will have the opportunity to become a free man and with his own critical thinking.

In fact, Maria Montessori, the founder of modern pedagogy and Active Education in Italy, supports the importance of educating the child to independence and autonomy. This does not mean leaving him free to do whatever he wants, but to help him do his experiences, discover and acquire knowledge and skills.

The activity of the child thus becomes the central point of the educational process, as well as the environment and educational materials are of crucial importance.

Here are some principles inspired by an Active child’s Education:
The educator must observe and never intervene
The task of parents and educators is to help them accomplish their own achievements as they learn to walk, run, and wash. “The master must minimize his intervention. It must be like a guardian angel, who watches for the child not to be disturbed in his free activity. (M. Montessori “Educating Freedom”)

Educational environments must be child-friendly
The school environment must be welcoming and familiar. Inside all the furniture and objects (chairs, tables, sinks …) must be modeled and used according to the needs of the small. It is important that spaces are open so that children can move easily and autonomously, but also interact with the outside environment.

Educate children with the right teaching materials
The teaching materials should be simple even if specially studied, such as objects to be assembled, ribbons, cards that can promote the intellectual development of the child and encourage self-correction of the error.
Educational materials must also educate the senses, develop motor skills, logical-mathematical, linguistic and musical skills.

Game is the baby’s work
The game plays an important role in helping children to be active, to learn to make choices, and to increase their mastery of their actions. As children grow, they have to experience a wide range of disciplines (art, music, language, science, mathematics, social relationships); Each of these matters is important for the development of a complex and integrated brain.
The toys must be simple, usable in autonomy, so very safe too. Through these, children learn to know themselves, others, and the world around them.
Active education prefers individual and free games to collective ones though supervised by the educator. The child must be free to do so while respecting the order of things and be able to collaborate with others by following the method of mutual teaching.

The child must be in contact with nature
It is important to make the child in contact with nature as much as possible, because the feeling of nature grows with attendance and exercise. A child left in the midst of nature pulls out muscle energies higher than what parents think.

Children should approach music to preschool age
According to Maria Montessori, music promotes autonomy in the small, the spirit of collaboration and participation, respect for each other, freedom. This is because it has the ability to open up the heart and make it more sensitive and human.
Compared to the language that tends to create walls between people, music unites all men into a single large community and must therefore remain a good accessible for everyone.

Halloween party and children’s fears

Every day children are fighting with their own shadows and for this reason many people think is useful to avoid other difficulties to them, making children growing up in a sweetened world without confrontation with fear. In some cases parents also demonize folk tales that speak of bad, orcs or monstrous characters that could increase the sense of insecurity and anxiety of children. Over the years many stories, considered too sad and bloody, have even been rewritten and transformed into colorful and sparkling tales where the characters have happy families and happy lives.

Fairy tales, however, are a metaphor of life and how can be denied to a child that death exists, as well as pain and difficult times to overcome?

Actually fear is a primary emotion and probably has a self-protective function which is useful to the growth of the child, because it activates in him behaviors that defend it from potential dangers: for example, if a child would not be afraid of the dark would not be held back by walk in unsafe and dark places, risking easily to get hurt.

The various fears of children, during their growth, are potentially infinite and depend largely on individual histories, but there are a number of fears that may be considered typical of developmental age (Quadrio Aristarchi, Puggelli, 2006): separation, darkness, death, abandonment, snakes, ghosts, monsters, doctor, etc. (To learn more we recommend the article: Quali sono le paure dei bambini …)

Precisely for this reason it is essential that a parent will help the child to recognize and understand their fears helping him to externalize and to overcome them. It is also important to understand when, behind some fears, are hiding real needs and requests for help.

Many times the fears of the children also end up to distress parents and often these are the ones that feed them through the mechanism called “emotional contagion.”

If parents are frightened, the child will be much more scared because he learns and reinforces that stimulous is really dangerous; if parents minimize the events on the contrary help him to frame the fact into perspective (Quadrio Aristarchi, Puggelli, 2006).

The storytelling of the fairy tales is definitely one of the most effective among the various methods recommended by child psychologists to help children deal with their fears.

The famous psychologist Bruno Bettelheim argued that telling scary stories to children was important because it helped them to exorcise the anguish and to disclose it externally.

Through stories children learn to live the strongest emotions in a secure manner, without being directly involved, and enjoying the reassuring proximity of a parent. At the same time they learn that, as in fairy tales the heroes get the kingdom and the happiness, even in real life you can overcome adversity with strength, intelligence and courage.

In almost all the folk tales we find some common elements as fear, courage, defeat of the danger, happy ending.

Bad characters in folktales embodies precisely the danger that will be defeated by the bravery and intelligence. Stories always have a happy ending and all the good characters are stronger and happier than before.

“Fairy tales are more than true – not because they tell us dragons exist, but because they tell us dragons can be beaten.”

~ G. K. Chesterton, writer

Talking about Ocarina #1 Halloween Writing Competition

It’s the time of year for Spooky Stories. How would you like to hear your own words read out on Storynory, this Halloween? You would? Well get writing!

Richard will be reading the winning entries out here on Storyory.com

And the grand prize is a tough and stylish MP3 player made in Italy by our friends at Ocarina.

Ocarina comes preloaded with stories – including some from Storynory – and as a special bonus, the winner can hear her or his story on the player.

It’s easy to carry, thanks to its distinctive loop handle. It plays hundreds of mp3 files through a loudspeaker, and it can record live sounds. Its smooth non-toxic rubber coating is secure, safe and durable.

Entirely Made in Italy, it is designed and produced in Florence,

So are you ready?

Send in your scariest story to this email address [email protected] ( that’s ‘comp’ short for competition )

There are only two rules – your story should not be more than 900 words And you should get it to us by October 27 – so get writing quick!

Playlist Bloom – la radio des enfants

This week we asked to our friends of Bloom, the best radio for children made in France, to propose a selection of their work.
We are very happy to publish here their response:
 
Bloom – the children’s radio – produces rich and varied audio tracks to listen with ears in alert and eyes wide open to the world.
We launched Bloom four years ago, noting a lack in this sector in France. There is an huge offer of video animation for children: cartoons, movies, video games, mobile applications. We wanted to offer something different, an alternative to this world of all screens.
There are also many CD of tales and nursery rhymes, but not a real media Radio for children. We started with enthusiasm in producing playful and intelligent tracks: tales and nursery rhymes, of course, but also entries on the world of gymnastics, of children’s questions and stories, games… We can do everything with the audio!
We met a great success with the arrival of our first compilation: Bloom – radio des enfants: Y’en a marre! production where we joined with the children to see how beautiful life is. Children and parents have listened to our programs with family fun. It has been especially our quirky tone that caught their attention.
We then published several compilations: Bloom – radio des enfants: En route! to go around the world, Trop fort!where we discover the great heroes of everyday life, Le froid c’est magique describing the winter delights, une journée avec Bloom! to accompany the youngest in the awakening, and a whole series of questions to see life through the eyes of children, solar polar expedition programs of two eco-adventurers, and many other things …
All of our compilations are designed to be listened to by car, train or plane, to occupy the children during long trips.
Bloom – radio des enfants is primarily a proposal for children to rediscover the pleasure of listening, as we did when young. Allow them to imagine, to dream and to project to the world. All early childhood’s professionals agree in saying what the sound is good for the development and welfare of the child.
We have prepared for you today a selection of English-French bilingual songs that are sure to satisfy your children. You will be amazed to see the words repeated in a foreign language with much ease.
But the aim is above all to have fun and dance!
Good listening to Bloom – radio des enfants and see you soon.

Music as rebirth. The history of the Orchestra of Children founded by Abreu

Today we want to tell you about a beautiful story born in Venezuela 40 years ago. In 1975 the economist and musician José Antonio Abreu founded El Sistema, an educational and musical pattern system that guarantees free and open access to music for children of all walks of life. The system has as its main purpose the protection of children and young people through commitment and the study of music, preventing anti-social and criminal behavior. An artistic and social importance at the same time. José Antonio Abreu started with the idea of redeeming the young people of his country, but to date the ‘Fundación del Estado para el System of Juvenile and Orquesta Infantil de Venezuela’ has become much more, which is a model for the entire South America and for all Western countries. In Italy, only six years ago he was born the System of Orchestras and Choirs Youth and Children with the aim of spreading the music education as a response to the difficulties which affect the youth. Already more than 8500 children and teens, aged 4 to 16 years, are participating in the growth of this social project, meeting 44 orchestral Nuclei distributed in 14 Italian regions.

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Even the Fiesole School of Music is sponsoring it, like many other realities scattered throughout Italy. In the district of Piagge, in collaboration with the high school Duca D’Aosta and Unicoop Scuola, it was born the orchestra project Mammamù. Mamma Musica, keeping music at the heart as an effective instrument of integration. As told by the master Antonello Farulli: “the criterion that ordered the inspiring ideas of the training program was that the deprivation even before discomfort and marginality is the cause of most of the individual’s intellectual development problems. Sound-Movement-Mind is the human path. The mind, the thought, borns from the voice of the mother, through movement. Our job is to trace the human being in the opposite direction. From the mind through movement we come to the sound. We try thus to solicit in children all the perception that somehow the environment had not solicited in them. Studying the music means to be born again from a educational and perceptual point of view. In Piagge as in Ramallah, in Palestine, in Venezuela, but also in Medellin into the Colombia of Narcos, or in Mexico rather than in Brooklyn, the music indicates the path that leads human beings from fear to freedom. ”

If you have the wish to go further into that, we recommend the documentary over El Sistema, directed by Alberto Arvelo, entitled Tocar y Luchar (2004) and that of Helmut Failoni and Francesco Merini “The other voice of music. Traveling with Claudio Abbado between Caracas and Havana “(2006) and the film “El sistema. Music to change life” (2008) by Paul Smaczny and Mary Stodtmeier.

 

 

Our playlist with the most famous Andersen’s tales

On the occasion of the Andersen Festival, the most important Italian Festival dedicated to fairy tales and theater, that will be held in Sestri Levante from June 9 to 12, this week we dedicate our playlist to the famous Danish writer Hans Christian Andersen.
Translated all over the world, the tales of Andersen are directed to both children and adults and, although are characterized by a colloquial and ingenue writing, they actually contain moral teachings that are sometimes very sophisticated.

Many of Andersen’s fairy tales have inspired cartoons and famous animated films, loved by children and not only, as “The Little Mermaid” and “Frozen”.
Below we highlight some of the most famous tales in cartoon version in three different languages: Italian, English and French:

The Little Mermaid

The little match girl

The snow queen

Le scarpette rosse

La principessa sul pisello

Mignolina

Le briquet

Le sapin dessin animé

La princesse et le porcher

Il brutto anatroccolo – Sinfonia

Traveling with children

Leaving is exploring new sensations definitely it falls among the “good” emotions that a child can breathe next to the parents. The little ones have the innate gift to adapt to situations, what matters is that they are supported by peaceful adults who make live a positive atmosphere. Will choose the sea like last year or you’ll launch at a time for a new adventure? Remember that there are no privileged destinations than other for traveling with small children, the important thing is to privilege situations where even the youngest can find interest in and feel at ease. The trip helps make a living experience of novelty, discovery and deepening that staying at home in the usual environment is rarely experienced. Travelling means looking at the world with new eyes as those of our children and discover with them unexplored places sharing the same magic and wonder.

There are at least five good reasons to go with Ocarina:
To record sounds and thoughts
To fall asleep lulled by the sound
To develop the travel diary and storytelling
To cuddle anywhere
To reassure him with the sound of “home”

Ocarina is also passionate about travel and the journey has been the key element of the project since its inception. The idea was born five years ago from the experience of a young Florentine family dynamic that has tested the first ancestor of Ocarina during a trip to Cambodia. That both the sea or the mountain is your summer destination, the first music player designed for the little ones is the perfect companion to take on the go. Mobile, versatile and durable Ocarina is synonymous with security, made in Italy using non-toxic materials. Travelling with her allows you to record sounds and thoughts and tell a fairy tale. Ocarina immerses your children in a safe and quiet situation making him “breathe” the air of home while traveling. Close your eyes and Ocarina brings you home. And remember, dear mom and dad, no matter go to the ends of the earth because traveling is a condition, just do it with curiosity and discovery

What are you waiting for? Plans the next trip. Ocarina will be happy to be with you!

FOG – The Florence Youth Festival

Ocarina loves music, specially when children are protagonists. This is why we love so much the Florence Youth Festival that was born in Florence in 1999 by the Academy San Felice Music School. Florence Youth Festival, FOG, is a music festival born with the intent to promote music and give to young musicians from around the world the opportunity to live a unique musical experience in Florence and Tuscany. The main venue of the festival is Loggia dei Lanzi in Piazza della Signoria, Florence, but many are the amazing places in which the Festival lives: Lucca, Prato, San Gimignano, Montecatini Terme, Perugia and Assisi. The festival reaches this year the 18th edition and involves 11 non-professional youth orchestras from all over the world. Since its inception and more and more every year the FOG is growing in terms of participation of both youth orchestras and public.

Each participating Orchestra has the opportunity to perform in a small tour in these beautiful cities. The average age of the musicians is from 12 to 18 years old. All the partecipants have the possibility to bring their passion for music in wonderful venues, real open-air museums. In addition to program and to promote the festival which takes place in July, FOG also organizes concert tour around Italy to promote the music exchange within the Italian territory. During festival the music really speaks a single language. Every night, as music creates socializing, the magic turns on. The concerts are all free and open access. We recommend you not to loose it!

The orchestras participating this year are:

NUS Symphony Orchestra (Singapore, 57 musicisti)

Greater Bridgeport Youth Orchestra (USA, 50 musicisti)

Musikgymnasiumsochester Graz (Austria, 38 musicisti)

Cork Youth Orchestra (Irland, 120 musicisti)

Orchestra Cupiditas (Italy, 50 musicisti)

Viotta Symphony Orchestra (The Netherlands, 75 musicisti)

Royal Symphonic Wind Orchestra “Vooruit” (Belgium, 75 musicisti)

Dutch Youth String Orchestra (The Netherlands, 20 musicisti)

Frysk Jeugd Orkest (The Netherlands, 66 musicisti)

Jugendphilharmonie Ludwigsburg (Germany, 60 musicisti)

Prochains concerts:

22 luglio 21,00 | Cortile Federico II – Cremona
Dutch Youth String Orchestra
program: P. Hellendaal, H. Andriessen, S. Barber, A. Vivaldi, A. Piazzolla, N. Rota
violin: Hawijch Elders
director: Carel den Hertog

23 luglio 21,15 | Loggia dei Lanzi
Jugendphilharmonie Ludwigsburg
program: P.I. Tschaikowski, F. Mendelsshon Bartholdy, A. Dvorak
violin: Joana Oster
director: Dietrich Schoeller-Manno

26 luglio 21,15 | Terme Tettuccio
Jugendphilharmonie Ludwigsburg
program: P.I. Tschaikowski, F. Mendelsshon Bartholdy, A. Dvorak
violin: Joana Oster
director: Dietrich Schoeller-Manno

25 luglio 21,15 | Biblioteca Lazzerini – Prato
Jugendphilharmonie Ludwigsburg
program: P.I. Tschaikowski, F. Mendelsshon Bartholdy, A. Dvorak
violin: Joana Oster
director: Dietrich Schoeller-Manno

24 luglio 21,00 | Castello Cortile Estivo – Bentivoglio
NUS Symphony Orchestra
program: G.Rossini, L.v. Beethoven, S. Prokofiev, A. Vivaldi, C. Gounod, T.S. Liu
director: Lim Soon Lee

Read the full program