Music And Movement Activities For Infants And Toddlers
Years ago there was the Mozart effect, and today, tons of research findings support the fact that music can support development in infants and toddlers in more ways than one. The simple act of singing a lullaby to your baby or putting on a song to move to can offer many benefits for your baby, which also includes strengthening the bond between you two.
Curious about how to take it further? Keep reading to discover some of the best music and movement activities for infants and toddlers and practically everything you need to know about exposing your child to these important sensory experiences!
What Are Music And Movement Activities For Preschool
These activities mean that children will learn music by movement.
Their whole bodies will move following the rhythm of instruments. So, to raise children well, teachers should include music and movement lesson plans in teaching kindergarten.
This is because it is an excellent approach for preschoolers to learn music at young ages. They can both enjoy the fun while experiencing music.
Other Music And Movement Activities For Preschoolers
Need more ideas? Try some of these suggestions:
- Make Some Noise: Get your child to make loud and soft noises, and emphasize the different efforts it takes in breathing for both.
- Have a Parade: Encourage your child to march around the room with props such as scarves, balls, or ribbons.
- Make a Music Video: Dance and move around to your childs favorite song. Record it and watch it back together.
- Turn up the music, add bubbles and start dancing and popping the bubbles!
- Explore YouTube there are thousands of music and movement activities for preschoolers.
- Try coloring to music when the music is quiet color softly and when it is load press harder with the crayon. Turn on peppy music and draw short lines and when slow, low tone music plays draw thick lines.
Have fun with these music and movement activities for preschoolers! Remember to experiment and have fun. There are no rules, just let the children explore and learn. Music and movement activities are a great way to promote learning and motor development in young children.
Recommended Reading: How To Play Music In Discord Voice Chat
Movement Activities Define And Refine Social Skills
- Group movement activities specifically help with cooperation and collaboration abilities. Working together in a game or song help kids learn to work as a unit. When you play with others you learn teamwork, trust, and respect for others. All of which are invaluable life lessons.
- Kids who are timid in social settings can benefit greatly from music and movement activities. These group games and songs can encourage positive social encounters that will boost their self-confidence.
Music And Movement Activities Improve Concentration
- Physical activity, especially directed movement activities, improve concentration. These movement activities, often called brain breaks, do so much for the entire learning process. Studies show that physical activity specifically helps your brain in the areas of processing speed, focused attention, and attention span.
Read Also: Can I Add Spotify Music To Imovie
Fun Music Activities For Preschoolers And Toddlers
At Studio Director, we help thousands of music studios run their day-to-day business tasks. Whether you need help with enrollment, tuition, or even marketing, ourmusic studio management software can do it all. Today, were sharing some of our favorite ideas for music activities for preschoolers and toddlers to add to your lesson plans. And, for parents of kids ages two to five who have found this post, these music and movement activities are great for at-home practice, events, and much more.
Free Movement & Dancing
Scarves and ribbons are a lot of fun to use as props for 3-5 year olds. Be sure to supervise of course, especially for the youngest ones.
Encourage your children to listen to the music and act out how it sounds. For example, if you played The Skating Waltz they could glide around the room waving their scarf slowly in the air. Maybe they would pretend to be a princess or a ballerina, but probably not a dinosaur!
You could listen to Flight of the Bumblebee and pretend to buzz around the room quickly. Perhaps another piece of music would encourage slow and heavy stomping like a dinosaur.
Don’t Miss: Are You Allowed To Play Music On Twitch
Movement Games And Activities For Preschoolers
Here are some ideas of fun kids activities to try at home or at school. You dont need any fancy equipment and you can improvise with many household or outdoor items.
These games are suitable for 3, 4 and 5-year-olds, but some can be adapted for 2-year-olds too.
Watch the video below for a list of the 18 activities, or read on for an explanation of each.
This post contains affiliate links for educational products that I personally recommend. If you purchase through one of them, I earn a commission at no extra cost to you. Read the terms and conditions for more details.
Play Hide And Seek With A Twist
The game of musical hide and seek involves hiding a musical toy in the house. Switch on the toy and let your child search for it with the help of its sound. Since the activity requires searching for the toy there is a lot of movement involved and finding something using just the sound is good for developing your childs listening skills.
Recommended Reading: How To Cancel Prime Music
Why You Should Use Music As A Learning Tool In Your Preschool Classrooms
The positive effects that music has on young kids are evident early in life. When they are toddlers, children can identify rhythm and move to the beat of the music. Music also has cognitive benefits that support early development. Some of the ways that music is beneficial to the development of toddlers are:
- Increase in sensory development Music exposure can help create pathways between the brain cells that increase when music is linked to different activities like dancing.
- Improved literacy and numeracy Exposing a child to music improves their natural ability to decode sounds and words. Nursery rhymes are helpful because, by singing, your child learns to identify sound patterns through repetition.
- Better mood Parents often use lullabies and songs to calm their children down to get them to sleep. Music can also be used to uplift their spirit.
- Coordination Dont worry if your little one hasnt mastered the lyrics to a song yet. They are still able to move to the rhythm of music, which is a form of learning. Music makes children want to move, which assists in developing fine and gross motor skills.
- Vocabulary Your child doesnt need to know the words to a rhyme or song to understand the storytelling in a particular piece.
Your child doesnt need to be the next superstar singer to benefit from music education. The do-re-mis that kids learn helps them to strive in ways that go beyond the basic alphabet.
Your child will be equipped to thrive in music lessons
Best Music Toys For Infants
Finding a musical toy for your baby is easy- youll find tons of options available, but it is here that you need to be even more careful. Make sure youre picking up the toy mindfully, and not just buying a light-up toy that plays music when your baby pushes the buttons on it.
You might want to invest in toys that are practical, functional, and open-ended. These toys will help your baby explore music in a much better way, and theyll last you for years too. Here are a couple of good options you can choose from.
Don’t Miss: Can Music Help With Depression
How To Set Up Your Preschool Music & Movement Learning Center
Children love music and appreciate any opportunities they have to get up and move around in the classroom, especially on cold and rainy days. Giving children the opportunity to listen to music, play instruments, experiment with sound, and move their bodies is vital in early care environments, which is why a music and movement learning center is a must-have for your preschool classroom. A music and movement center can help children develop their gross and fine motor skills, improve their balance and coordination, hone their listening skills, and learn about cultures around the world.
Taking the time to properly set up your music and movement center will help you organize a space that promotes creativity and group participation. Here are a few steps we’ve come up with to help you set up a music and movement learning center that fits your classroom and meets the needs of the children in your care:
How Do Movement Activities Help Babies And Toddlers
Engaging in movements, orienting themselves in the space, and using their bodies is something that comes to every baby and toddler naturally. Getting absorbed in movement activities can help growing children link concepts and cause to action and learn through trial and error- an experience that is exceptionally important for them to have.
Some studies have also linked movement activities to better memory in children. And of course, there are always the physical benefits of movements including improved balance and stability, gross motor skills, and strengthening of muscles. Thats not all getting involved in movement activities can be incredibly helpful to less vocal children.
Teaming movement activities up with some music can help you make the most of the entire experience.
Also Check: How To Check Apple Music Stats
Better Fine Motor Skills
Before children develop the fine motor control needed to perform tasks like writing, they must develop their gross motor skills. Gross motor coordination is a prerequisite to fine motor coordination.
Babies develop from the head down, and from the centre towards the outside of their body. In other words, they develop control of their head first, then neck, core, etc.
Later, they learn to use their arms and legs. The fingers, toes and other small muscles of the body develop last.
A child who has well-developed gross motor coordination will have greater success with fine motor activities such as feeding, dressing, tying shoes, drawing, completing activities at preschool and later on, writing.
Preschool Songs With Actions
If you are able to think back to your early years, you can probably remember some of the songs that would fit nicely into this category. Songs with actions are popular kids songs that have some specific movements attached to them . Perhaps the most popular option for preschool songs with actions is Im a Little Teapot. This song is known by millions of people, and most of them learned it at a very young age along with the movements that accompany the lyrics.
Also Check: Which High School Musical Character Are You
Music And Movement Activities Strengthen Imagination
- Imagination is a critical component in cognitive development and is crucial for healthy interaction in society as an adult. When children engage in music and movement activities such as pretending to dig or fly, or to be something it strengthens their imagination. The cadence and sequence of the music help them to visualize, making the activity easier.
Music and movement activities strengthen language skills
- Studies show that music training enhances language-related networks in the brain and improves the ability to detect subtle differences between sounds, which helps with pronunciation.
- Hearing words that rhyme or repeat helps kids understand language and concepts.
Also, hearing words in sequences to a beat while doing actions, or movements help kids understand concepts. For instance, if you are moving up and down to a beat with your child while saying up and down the concept becomes extremely clear, quickly.
What Do Preschoolers Learn Through Music And Movement
As adults, its easy to take for granted all that young children are learning. Every milestone that a young child is working through from clapping, to walking to moving an egg shaker to a beat is preparing them for another more complex milestone in the future.
You can find a detailed list of many of the musical benefits of preschool music classes in this post, but here are the highlights:
- Coordination Learning simultaneous body movements is necessary for future music study.
- Gross and Fine Motor Skills Young children need to master gross motor skills such as walking, running and clapping before they can move on to more fine motor skills such as holding a pencil or playing piano keys.
- Literacy Skills Literacy and music go hand in hand. Recognizing numbers, letters words and language is a huge part of learning music.
- Creativity and Self Expression Music is so relatable to nearly every individual. Children who have many early musical experiences are set up for a lifetime of having a creative outlet and new ways to express their thoughts and feelings.
- Following Directions Following directions is important in nearly every facet of life, but especially in playing music. Movement and music activities give children a chance to hone their skills at listening to and following directions.
- Sequencing Music and movement activities give kids plenty of opportunities to learn that certain activities have multiples steps and that they go in a certain order.
Also Check: How To Set Up Apple Music
Benefits Of Movement In Early Childhood Education
Focusing almost exclusively on academics during the preschool years actually misses the point! Its possible and actually essential to focus on both physical development and mental development in preschoolers.
Physical activity in preschool is important, and its benefits can last far beyond preschool graduation. Preschoolers who get plenty of time to play and participate in physical activity enjoy:
- A healthier lifestyle, now and in the future
- Increased school readiness skills
- Increased memory skills
Not only that, but interactive games give your child a leg up on social interaction and communication skills. Kids learn to problem-solve while also learning important things like counting and colors.
Children simply do better when they are allowed to move. Early childhood curriculum that incorporates movement sets your child up for a better future.
What Are Music And Movement Activities For Preschoolers
These are activities that can help improve their gross motor skills, coordination, and even math and literacy skills by getting children learning and moving to music.
Research has shown that when you add movement when learning academic material, it can help children understand and retain the concepts.
Also Check: Can You Study Music In College
Movement Activities For Preschoolers You Can Do At Home
Over the years, as academic requirements have intensified to meet standardized test scores, early childhood education has beefed up its emphasis on reading, writing, and more. Unfortunately, for some early childhood education providers, this has meant a de-emphasis on movement. But taking movement out of a preschoolers day actually inhibits academic progress. Plus, any parent can tell you that 3-5-year-old children need to move a lot! Movement activities for preschoolers are not only fun, theyre necessary for your childs development.
What Are Movement Activities
Movement activities, also called gross motor activities, are games, actions or activities of any kind that engage the large muscles of the body, thereby building gross motor coordination.
Movement is a natural state for a child and as long as he has enough freedom to play and be, he will seek out regular movement through his play activities.
While free play is essential, there are many kinds of movement and gross motor activities you can initiate with your child that will get the large muscles working together.
You may want to try a game or activity if you can tell your child needs a break from an intense activity, if your child has not had much outdoor play, if youd like to help your child build some skills, or just to have some fun, bonding time.
Through movement activities, you can work on skills such as turn-taking, cooperation, vocabulary development, social skills, or gross motor skills such as strength, balance, hand-eye coordination, agility, speed, etc.
Don’t Miss: How To Get Music To Play On Instagram Story
Music And Movement Games Engage All Of The Senses
- Engaging the senses via physical activities is helpful for all children in the learning process. However, kids on the Autism spectrum need more opportunities and specifically targeted practice.
- Engaging the senses stimulates the brain. It creates neural pathways and improves sensory processing systems. And it also improves social skills such as communication and cooperation.
Music And Movement Activities Improve Coordination
- These activities require specific movements that coordinate hands and feet in ways not required by everyday activities. And thereby develop extensive connections across the brain.
- Songs with beat or lyrics which encourage kids to hop, jump, gallop, skip, crawl, creep, and more develop balance and coordination. Interestingly, activities that require these types of coordinated movements help make kids aware of how their body moves and how it relates to the space they take up.
Read Also: How To Get Free Music
Jack And The Beanstalk
Do you have a jungle gym at home or at the park with a ladder your child can climb up? Why not tell the story of Jack and the Beanstalk, and act it out together.
When Jack climbs up the beanstalk, climb up the ladder together and then tell the parts about the giants house while sitting at the top of the jungle gym.
This will be an exciting variation on storytime and will help your child build strength and practise the skill of climbing.
How Does Music And Movement Prepare Preschoolers To Learn An Instrument
All of the skills listed above are vital parts of playing a musical instrument. Intentional time with music and movement sets preschoolers up for success so that when they have more opportunities to learn music later on it feels natural. Often, children who have been given music music and movement opportunities are curious and excited to learn more about music. It isnt forced.
One of the most important aspects of learning music at any age is that it must internalized. You have to feel music within your body in order to play it correctly. The best way to internalize music is to move with it.
There are many, many layers to learning music. There are many skills that are happening at the same time. It is complex and full of the finest details.
You can see how deliberately practicing the skills needed to play an instrument throughout the preschool years helps children to put it all together once they have a chance to play an instrument.
Recommended Reading: How Much Is Amazon Prime Unlimited Music