Unlock the Power of Music
As parents, we all want to see our children grow up to be healthy, happy and successful adults. But did you know that music can play a significant role in helping them achieve this?
Every year on June 21st, people worldwide celebrate World Music Day or Fête de la Musique, and it's the perfect time to explore the wonderful world of music with your child.
Benefits of incorporating music into your little one's routine
Music is beneficial for children of all ages, even in the womb. Babies respond and benefit from listening to music!
Music can help to boost your little one's brain development and improve their memory, language skills, and concentration. Playing music can also improve their mood, reduce anxiety, and promote relaxation.
Communication and Language development
Listening to music improves your little one's language and communication development in multiple ways. Through music, children learn to differentiate between words, sounds, tones, and rhythms, which is critical for understanding and using language effectively.
The repetitive nature of music helps in enhancing memory skills, helping them to anticipate and remember words, develop new vocabulary, and expand their language abilities.
Music also supports and promotes children's attention, listening skills, and ability to focus and concentrate. This is due to the active attention they need when listening to the different sounds and words within the music.
In addition, children develop their social and communication skills by watching and imitating their parents and caregivers. As they observe and learn from us, they grip key social cues and communication methods that will shape their abilities in these areas for years to come.
One of the most fun and effective ways to encourage physical activity in children is through music! Music can be a fantastic tool in helping to strengthen children's gross motor skills, as well as improve coordination and balance. Music-related activities such as clapping, dancing, and jumping can positively impact a child's physical development.
Playing musical instruments can also enhance fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination. As little ones bang their pots, tap sticks, and shake tambourines, they develop their spatial awareness, making early maths and science concepts easier to visualise.
Nursery rhymes, in particular, encourage actions and provide opportunities for your little one to explore their movement; songs such as 'Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes', 'Row Row Your Boat', and 'Wind the Bobbin Up' will encourage your little one to clap, wave, tap, to bounce, or stamping their feet to the simple and repetitive rhythms.
'The Family Finger' and 'Twinkle Twinkle Little Star' promote fine motor skills, which are crucial for everyday tasks such as writing, drawing, tying shoelaces, using utensils, and opening zippers.
Additionally, songs can be a fun and effective way to teach children about healthy habits. Numerous songs about nutrition and health teach children the importance of eating fruits, vegetables, and whole foods, self-care, brushing their teeth, washing their hands, and independence skills. Try songs like 'This is the Way I Brush My Teeth' to encourage independence in self-care; 'I Like To Eat' to explore nutrition.
Personal, Social and Emotional Development
Spending time singing or playing music with your child is a great way to create a strong bond between you. Music is essential to your little one's development, especially during their early years. Your child loves listening to your voice, watching you and other caregivers, and learning essential social and emotional skills.
As they grow, they continue to learn about the world from you and others, copying your behaviour, actions, words, and movements.
Songs can teach children about themselves, their bodies, their preferences, and their ability to express themselves and connect with others through music.
This can also help your child develop emotional intelligence by promoting self-awareness and emotional regulation.
By listening to different types of music, your little one can recognise how it affects their moods and emotions. This can help them understand and label their own feelings better.
When singing with children, exaggerating our gestures, expressions, and emotions is important. Not only will you make the experience fun, but you will be encouraging self-expression and their understanding of emotions.
Plus, music can be an excellent tool for regulating emotions. If your child is upset or angry, they can listen to calming music to help them relax and positively process their emotions. By engaging with music in this way, your child can become more self-aware and better equipped to manage their feelings.
Music helps the development of other areas of your little one, such as Literacy, Numeracy and their Understanding of the world.
Music helps your little one develop early mathematical skills by responding to patterns and rhythms, counting and keeping the beat as they play with instruments, and listening to repetitive rhythms and tones.
In addition, counting songs such as 10 In a Bed, ten little monkeys will teach about counting, number sequencing, and counting forwards and backwards.
Plus, music is a fun way to learn about the world and its diversity; children can learn about animals, bugs, journeys, people, cultures, and traditional music genres from around the world!
Music and Makaton
Using Makaton in songs for children is an incredible tool that helps improve communication, build confidence, and enhance their language skills.
Makaton is a programme that uses signs, words and symbols. It was specifically designed to assist those who have difficulty with speech or are non-verbal, making it an excellent aid for young children just starting to communicate. If you would like to learn more about Makaton, click here.
With Makaton incorporated into their favourite songs, children can understand the lyrics better and pick up the signs more quickly and effectively.
Moreover, Makaton can boost self-esteem as children learn new skills and build their independence in expressing themselves. Therefore, using Makaton in songs for young children is a creative way of making learning enjoyable, inclusive, and empowering.
If you're looking for enjoyable songs to sing along to, have fun, learn, and perform actions with, subscribe to our YouTube channel. We release new songs, activities, and stories every week!
Join 1000's of families learning at home
Get 3 months of free access to our award-winning nursery education app.