We all know, and are told, that singing is good for our babies – even terrible singing! Most people I talk to don’t how it can help development, other than teaching language, so below are some wonderful facts about singing with your baby. While you are stuck in lockdown, it’s an ideal time to make the most of this type of play, so I’ve also come up with top tips on how to make the most of your time together!
Songs Support Your Baby’s Communication
Fact: Singing with your baby supports their communication as they grow, teaching them about the inflections and structure of language. It also helps to build the muscles that we use for speaking which supports pronunciation, as well as allowing them to learn a range of words and use their imagination.
Top Tip: Songs like “Old MacDonald Had A Farm” are great for working those mouth muscles, and also a good way to make learning about different animals really fun (Don’t forget to have your toys at the ready!)
Actions Help to Develop Coordination
Fact: Action songs help to support gross and fine motor co-ordination, as well as keeping their focus engaged to improve concentration and spatial awareness as they grow.
Top Tip: Try out a song like “Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes”. For smaller babies, you placing your hands on them helps them to learn about their body, as well as experiencing the sensation of where they are in space and time. As they get older, you will enjoy the development as they learn to master it all on their own!
Singing Helps to Build Your Baby’s Memory
Fact: Singing helps with your memory, and for your child this can be an effective way to learn things about the world (try and see how many songs you can remember now!)
Top tip: Using lots of different number songs can be a good way to introduce sequences to you child, and even better still, add in toys or objects to demonstrate this… (“Five green and speckled frogs”, “Five Little Ducks”, “One Potato, Two Potato…”)
Singing Makes Us Happy
Fact: Singing helps to lift your mood! When we sing out loud, we release endorphins which can relieve stress and anxiety, as well as us creating even more happy hormones when we hear music we enjoy. For your babies, this can help them through periods of upset, as well as to provide them reassurance and structure if you use it as part of a routine. Remember, they love your voice!
Top tip: Singing a calming song such as “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” along with a cuddle as part of your bedtime routine can create lots of positive associations with sleep, and is a great way to connect with your baby.
And don’t forget, if you’re short of ideas, I’m uploading a new nursery rhyme to Instagram stories including the different ways that you can use each song to support your baby’s development.