We've all seen babies joyfully connecting with music -- bouncing, rocking, swaying along -- with big smiles on their faces. Whether the source is the car radio, live musicians playing, or mom and dad singing to them, the reaction is natural and instinctive: Babies like music and they respond to it.
Toddlers and kids also engage wholeheartedly with music and are often inspired to play along. Hitting a pot or pan with a wooden spoon, keeping tempo by stomping their feet or by playing a simple musical instrument, young kids really enjoy getting into it and making some noise.
People often ask us what kinds of music are best for children of certain ages. My answer is always this: The music that they like and respond to. It’s easy to tell -- their face lights up and their bodies start moving. I will generalize that the youngest children prefer simpler melodies with repetitive lyrics and gentle instrumentation -- a piano and vocal version of “Mary Had A Little Lamb” or a folksy version of “Old MacDonald Had A Farm”, for instance. But, I have also watched toddlers twirling around to a big soaring Tchaikovsky concerto and getting their groove on to a reggae hit like “Don’t Worry Be Happy”.
The simple beats of classic rock and roll seem to connect with just about everyone over the age of two. Novelty song lyrics often capture children’s attention and appeal to their sense of silliness. Within the Kidsongs Library, I would point to “Splish, Splash”, “Purple People Eater” and “Yes, We Have No Bananas” as examples of oldies that transcend the generations. Grab your video camera to capture the moment when your little ones start to “rock out” -- it's always cute.
"Splish Splash" from Ride the Roller Coaster
We have over 300 songs to choose from in our Kidsongs Music and Video Library, with free lyrics available to all. Check your local library or children’s books and music stores for other great sources of kids music, too. With kids and music, it really is the more the merrier! And, you might just find yourself joining in the singing and dancing fun, too.
To see the our complete list of kid’s songs available for mp3 download, click here. To see our toddler friendly DVDs go here.