Toddlers are such an interesting bunch aren’t they? One moment they are exploring outside then the next they are sitting quietly looking at a story book. They are busy little humans, developing new skills faster than they can squeeze all your favourite moisturiser down the bathroom sink (which is pretty fast!) For toddlers, music can soothe, excite, entertain and delight. When your child becomes a toddler music maker though, they will experience cognitive benefits that support their early development. Here’s 5 easy ways to enjoy toddler music activities at home:
Pot and a wooden spoon
Before you start to cover your ears and never speak to us again, keep in mind that simply hitting a pot with a spoon can encourage your little toddler music maker to sporadically keep time. Grab your own pot and spoon and imitate what your toddler is doing-copy their rhythm and see how delighted they are to be running the show!
Finger plays and hand motions
Most toddlers love to join in on a song but sometimes the language is not quite there for them to sing along. This is where joining in by doing the actions encourages enjoyment and participation while their verbal skills develop. Sing songs such as Twinkle-Twinkle, Insy-Winsy or Open, Shut Them and role model the movements to your toddler as you sing. They’ll soon understand the link between the two and you may even find a few song requests coming your way by little fingers twinkling in your face!
If the idea of the spoon and pot is a bit too much for you to handle at the moment (or if you have a sleeping newborn in the next room) then outdoor music may be just what you are looking for. Many parks have a musical element built in that is perfect for your little toddler music lover! Here’s a couple of our favourites:
The Park on Schnapper Point Drive, Mornington. This park has some chimes set up. Do a treasure hunt beforehand to find the perfect stick to use or B.Y.O beater!
Ballam Park, Frankston. Aside from being an amazing playground, this park features Talk Tubes. One person speaks into a mouth piece while another, some distance away, can hear the sound through at their end! Lots of fun to be had experimenting with sounds, songs and noises.
Take a closer look at your local park and see what opportunities there are for toddler music activities.
Using bells while dancing
If you toddler is a natural dancer, enhance the experience by adding some bells in to the mix. There are many kids of bells that a toddler can enjoy however for dancing, wearing the bells on their ankles and wrists frees up their hands for all the movement they will want to be enjoying. While their body responded to the beat, the bells respond to their movement and a lovely feedback-synergy takes place.
Introduce a range of music into your home
Perhaps the most important element is introducing your toddler to a range of music. Watch the way they respond to classic music versus a pop song. See if they seem to prefer a particular musical over all others. Share with them songs from when you were a kid and let them witness your own joy in singing along. In the car, at the dinner table, while doing chores; all opportunities to expose your child to another musical experience.
As you can see, there are hundreds of ways in which you can begin to enjoy music with your toddler. How many more toddler music experiences can you think of?