Listening to and creating music helps children learn numeracy, literacy and emotional skills.
Incorporating music into routines and play in the early years has a positive influence on your child’s early development. It can get them moving, thinking and inspire creativity.
Did you know music is one of the few activities that use both sides of the brain (logical and creative)? This means it helps build important brain connections, and the more connections we have, the faster we are able to think. Most importantly though, music is fun and if your child is having fun, their brain is open to learning.
Make simple musical instruments
- Fill small, empty plastic bottles with rice, dried beans, seeds or stones to make shakers with different sounds.
- Make a drum set out of different sized pots.
- Hammer metal bottle tops onto pieces of wood.
- Make rhythm sticks from short pieces of dowelling, chopsticks or rulers.
Types of musical experiences
- Singing, listening to or making up songs and nursery rhymes.
- Acting out lyrics or song stories.
- Dancing to music.
- Playing homemade or other musical instruments.
- Listening to CDs and DVDs.
Set up a music environment
For louder instruments, head outside, but for those less noisy you can set up an area in a corner of a room. Place different instruments in the space and encourage children to test how each sounds.
Ask your child to describe the differences they hear in each sound or even show them with their body.
Enjoy music as a group
Once children have played with the instruments, you can start making music together. Play a simple beat, and ask them to repeat it with their instrument or hands. Don’t forget to switch jobs so that your child can lead you.
Use recorded music
You can use a range of recorded music to encourage children to move, dance and sing. This can help them to connect the sounds they are hearing with the way they express these with their body.