Learning an instrument from a young as, such as a small drum or a xylophone, has proven to be beneficial for both cognitive and motor skill development in infants and toddlers. Children also experience joy or pleasure from participating or listening to music. There has been research conducted which shows a strong connection between rhythm skills and pre-reading abilities in toddlers. Music, it seems, can also help little ones with language development.
When hearing a tune, infants will often try to mimic the sounds long before they develop an understanding of the actual words, they will also try to move around to the music in an attempt to boogie along with it. They’re intensely interested in music and may understand differences in pitch and language that even adults just don’t seem to understand. They have amazing listening skills, they are able to recognise songs, allowing their parents to quickly realise what sort of music they prefer. It has been proven that infants have an incredible memory for music, and after one to two weeks of exposure to the same song, they can distinguish it from unfamiliar melodies. Remember to try new piece of music though, infants are, after all, curious little cuties who are stimulated by new things.
Singing your child to sleep is also a fabulous way to ensure that they feel content. Singing can have a mesmerising effect on infants, it enables parents to catch the attention of their child much better than spoken language. This is why speaking in a “baby voice” to infants and toddlers is so effective. It’s always a great idea to have a few songs lined up for calming, exciting, relaxing, and lulling your child.
Toddlers love to dance and move to music, the key to good toddler music is to use repetition to encourage the use of words and memorisation. Use of songs with silly words will also encourage laughter… imagine how giggly your child would be if Mary had a little spider instead of a lamb! Give it a go and see how much fun you can have mixing up old nursery rhymes with silly words.
Children surrounded by music, whether playing instruments, singing, listening, or watching their favourite TV characters act out their songs on screen, are likely to show a keen interest in music throughout their adolescents, and perhaps even into adulthood. Music is such a huge part of the human experience, enjoy exploring it with your child!
At Angel’s Paradise Early Education Childcare Centres, we believe in encouraging early music development with fun and interesting books.