You may have already heard your toddlers first attempts at singing her favorite songs. Music is one of those wonderful things that knows no bounds, it can be shared and enjoyed with your child any where, any time and any place. It is at your fingertips, with a clap or a stomp, a hum or whistle; you can hear it with the wind in the trees or in the sounds of the rain on a roof.
Your childs favorite songs can soothe her to sleep or stir up an imaginitive world of discovery. Singing with your child brings a joy and richness to your lives that goes far deeper than just learning the words or enjoying a moment together, it can bring a closeness and love that goes beyond words and into the depths of your soul.
Music can help make a game of something scary, or learn about something new. You can check out my newsletter for themed lyrics to songs and fun finger play ideas.
Maybe you have a special song that you learned from your grandmother, music can also be a wonderful way to bring a child closer to their roots and their heritage. My husband is from Eastern Canada and I want our children to grow up understanding that culture as it is slowly dissapearing. Lucky for us there are many wonderful songs that we have learned and sing to keep the East Coast close to our hearts. A Mexican folk song, an African folk tale or Irish lullaby are all great ways to help children identify with where they came from.
A song sung at bedtime can become an important part of your routine and help your child connect the song with night time. My daugher started to sing the lullaby I sang to her to herself in bed after I was gone.
Toddlers love music that they can predict, allow them to fill in the blanks “The eensy weensy ________”. They also enjoy hand motions that go along with words, finger play is a toddlers great love and now they are big enough to do the song along with you or for you! When they can recall the words to a song they are building their memory skills. When they associate the words of a song to situations in their own lives they better understand how things are connected and develop emotionally.
Making up songs or words to well known songs can be a fun creative activity for you and your toddler. It can also serve as a distraction to avert near disaster and get a wiggly child into a carseat or stroller. Dancing with your children can be a stress relief for you and them. If you are both feeling a little overwhelmed, turn on or sing a silly song to shake those yucky feelings out!
For more magical music ideas visit one of my favorite places on the web. (look for the “Getting in Tune” link to the right.)
My favorite kids songs can be found here