When my son was a year old, I reluctantly enrolled the two of us in a “mommy and me” music class at a local university. I was reluctant because I imagined having to sit in a circle with a group of overly enthusiastic moms while our babies alternated between screaming and hitting each other on the heads with tambourines. What would it be like? Would I feel silly? And most importantly, would my baby get anything out of it?
I’m happy to say that he did, and I did too.
I shouldn’t have been surprised: the benefit of music for babies is nothing new. It soothes them when they’re upset and energizes them when it’s time to play. It helps them develop pre-literacy and language skills, and can be a great tool for self-expression.
Here are some easy ways you can incorporate music into your baby’s play. Take it from a mom who knows: it’ll be great for both of you!
All Aboard for Musical Fun!
Disney Baby’s Sing-Along-Choo Train is a great toy for infants because of its bright colors, cheerful characters, and sweet melody. Place your baby on the floor so he can see the action up close!
Available at the Disney Store for $49.99
Three Words: Kitchen Dance Party
Turn on some favorite tunes for a kitchen dance party. It’s impossible to be in a bad mood when your kiddo’s showing you her best breakdancing moves.
Available at Amazon for $7.99
Have a Neighborhood— or Just a Back Yard— Parade!
Get your toddlers marching and clapping to the beat. They’ll love it!
Mary Lauren Weimer is a social worker turned mother turned writer. Her blog, My 3 Little Birds, encourages moms to put down the baby books for a moment and tell their own stories. She writes about all things toddler at Babble’s Toddler Times. Connect with her on Facebook and Twitter.