Mother Goose on the Loose

by Dr. Betsy Diamant-Cohen

Started as children’s librarian in NJ 1980’s when there were few services for children under 3. A graphic artist created some flannel board pieces. Then she tried some knee bouncing activities after having a  brief speaker for parents. Then she moved to Isreal—where picture books were shelved by illustrator.   With her young child she attended a program by Barbara Cass-Beggs where attendees were reassured that children at this age would not sit still–to just keep coming to the program.Rhymes and songs just right for that age were used . Childrens attention to program progressed as weeks went by.

Using Barbara Cass-Begg’s “Listen, Like, Learn” method, Betsy sat down and figured out a way of combining libraries with the program which she named Mother Goose on the Loose.   Tought in Isreal for 12 years. While away–great brain research came out on babies and Mother Goose on the Loose began training in the U.S with a program that was not only fun for young children but had great skill building activities.

Why is this different than other baby programs? Relies on songs just right for this age. 80% repetition–children love and learn best from repetition. Developmental tips-one to five sentence knowledge on helping your children. Ten different sections-a structure-sets a theme. Musical instruments. Lullabye section. Interactive Rhyme. Always end with the same thing so the kids know it is ending.

Workshop attendees attended an actual sample program with set-up explanation, introduction (with clear explantions-parents and children can just enjoy program), sample songs and activities. Packet has a list of positive reinforcement words suggested to be learnedby heart.

Opening rhyme should be the same to always signify the beginning of the program. She uses one short minimal text picture book. Puppets and musical instruments are used.

Stand up-movement activities. Use freeze activities which teaches children to freeze or stop when told. Great for safety.

Ending interactive activity (pull Humpty Dumpty off the flannel board wall)–always the same–anticipate ending—children learn to wait their turn. Ending songs always the same as well.

Do it yourself script:

1. Welcome Remarks    2. Opening rhymes and reads    3. Body Rhyme  4. Rum Pum Pum (children tap out names with syllables). 5. Stand up activities  6. Animal sequence  7. Musical Instruments and props 8. Lullaby  9. Interactive Rhymes  10. Closing segments  Remember 80% repetition. Plan one week and then you only need to change a few items each week.

You are not performing-you are facilitating the interaction. Mother Goose on the Loose is a copyrighted program. If you follow the program-10 sections-80% repetition you may use the name.

Sandy, a librarian who has been using Mother Goose on the Loose for years gave the suggestion to make up musical instrument kits with songs words for parents to check out. She also gave some different book/prop ideas she uses.

You can go to to purchase CD’s.

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