Have you ever had a song get stuck in your head that just won’t go away. This happens to me every once in a while and it drives my children a little nuts. These songs have been from obscure to current and from all genres. Examples include Swing Low Sweet Chariot to Jackson to True Colors to Poker Face. There doesn’t seem to be any rhyme or reason, or even a hint of why all of a sudden I want to hear a particular song. iTunes has received a lot of my money because of this.
The song in my head on Wednesday was Jackson, sung by Johnny Cash and June Carter. Some of you may remember the song and others may ask who are they. My kids say that to me all the time.
While picking up my son from his music lesson, I started to sing the parts of the song I remember, much to the chagrin of my two youngest children. Then, while waiting for my oldest son to get out of band practice with my other three, I pulled up iTunes to listen to the snippet provided as a taste of the song.
Usually that will help clear the song from my head. But not this time. After I parked I went to the site that has everything, YouTube. I searched for Jackson and found a Karaoke version. There in the car with three of my children, we did a round of Karaoke to Jackson. Of course my kids thought I was a little out of my mind. However, once it started, two of them joined in singing it with me. In fact we did it twice. After it was over, we still had a little time so they had some requests of their own. We ended with singing and watching music videos for a few more songs. Corny, but fun. It was one of those memory creating moments.
When we got home I kept thinking about how one can get fixated on something. Students kept coming to mind from over the years that were fixated on a topic, whether it be a phrase said over and over to wanting to be outside so much they just left the room. I wondered what strategies do they have to get back on track. What strategies do we educators have to help them get back on track.
Is it a quick redirection, a picture reminder, a few minutes outside, a timeout to refocus, or believe it to be an act of defiance in not following directions? What should our course of action take since they don’t have access, such as my example, to an iPhone to pull up a song to put the fixation to rest.
I don’t know the answer, if there is one answer, to assist a student when this happens for him or her. What I do have is a fresh perspective to help find a way to help the student “scratch this itch” and be able to return to the task at hand and his/her learning. I’ll continue to ponder and wonder what strategies can be developed to help the student.
If you have any suggestions, please let me know.