Do you have a fussy baby? A toddler that needs help completing a task like washing their hands? A preschooler tired of waiting in line? Sing a song! Singing is one of the easiest tools we have to soothe, focus and entertain our children - and it boosts brainpower too!
Research tells us that music and song provide a lot of benefits for our little ones. One of these is language. When we sing, we naturally slow down our speech which allows children to focus on those individual sounds much easier. If you think about it, most of the time we talk very, very fast in our home language. This is fine when talking to another adult speaker, but young children need more time to process sounds so their brains can map language. This is called phonological awareness and is critical to understanding speech, learning to talk, and later, learning to read. Children who have a strong grasp of the sound structure of their home language - or strong phonological awareness - will have an easier time assigning sounds to letters and blending them together. Singing is one of the best ways to develop this skill and best of all, it's free and easy!
Sing lullabies to help your little ones sleep or calm down after an upset. Sing songs about difficult transitions or tasks like washing hands or cleaning up toys. And keep several silly and fun songs in your toolbox for playtime or waiting times. Need some song ideas? No problem! Head over to the Library's Song page for lots of fun songs and more. Then, check out the Library's Racing to Read page for activity sets for babies, toddlers and preschoolers that include great songs. You'll be singing in no time!
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