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Introducing children to music and rhythm

Attending early years music groups


Outside of the home environment there are many ways to expose your children to music There are lots of music groups aimed at babies and children all over the country, such as Jo Jingles or similar, independently run groups. Sing and Sign is another popular type of music group that may operate in your area - this special program helps babies to communicate before speech in a fun and informal setting, helping parents to understand their child before they can speak.  Not only are such groups a great way to develop your child's love of music in a fun setting, but they provide a chance for mums to get out of the house and meet other parents.

There's not really any lower age limit for early years music classes - starting around 4 months and upwards is usually the norm. It's nice if your child can sit up unaided as some classes incorporate things like rolling a ball as part of the session. Classes usually last no longer than 30 minutes and are limited to small numbers.

You'll probably sit in a circle, with your child in front of you or in your lap, and the session leader will usually sing a song at the beginning which introduces all the children in the class. There will be a chance to sing popular well-known songs, sing songs with actions, listen to a variety of different genres of music, dance with baby (or toddlers can dance independently, of course!) or play interactive games such as rolling a ball while reciting a rhythm, or playing percussion instruments/shakers to a piece of music.

What's really lovely about early years music classes is that they're a wonderful way to bond with your child - you can hold your child close as you sing and at the same time they'll be learning important developmental skills, such as shaking a shaker or handling another instrument. Furthermore, taking part in music classes can aid early speech development.

Sounds good? Want to know where you can find a local class?
Log into your local netmums site – www.netmums.com – and browse to the preschool classes section.  They have listings for music and dance sessions as well as baby signing sessions which encorporate songs and rhymes with the skill of baby signing.  Better yet, listings have comments from parents who have attended the sessions so you can read what the classes are really like.


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