The magic of music & reading

12:0AM, Sep 1st 2014

The benefits of regularly reading with and to your child are bountiful, as are the joys of music, singing, dancing and playing.

There's nothing wrong with a bit of culture for your little one and he'll love it if you get involved too – so get reading and play some sweet music together

12-18 months
A snuggle on your lap with a book can be very soothing for you and your baby. Reading also helps develop your child's ear for language and rhythm, aids future speech development, and encourages listening skills. With developing memory and understanding, she may start having favourite books.

Your child will also love to hear you sing and clap, and has the capacity to appreciate a wide range of music.

Things she'll love
Whether board, cloth, plastic or novelty (ie jigsaws or textures), your child will love books that encourage joining in. She'll like rhyming texts or repeated phrases; animal sounds; questions; flaps to lift; picture books; simple stories; more complicated stories, and nursery rhymes.

How to help
* Make reading part of your everyday routine - bedtime is ideal.

* Use books without words so you can say what you want without sticking to a set text.

* Let your child point things out to you.

* Sing or recite nursery rhymes with lots of emphasis on the rhythm.

* Start playing your child a range of music.

* Sing her lullabies at bedtime.

18-24 months
Your child will take books seriously now, and may believe that the pictures are true or tell a story about her. With more sophisticated memory and understanding, she may be developing favourites - the repetition may be boring for you but it really helps her to concentrate and anticipate things. The same applies to a tape of favourite songs. And music, by helping your child see patterns in rhymes and music, encourages her to see patterns.

Things she'll love
Your child will love story books involving repetition; stories with a surprise ending; books with the same character; series books; books with a theme (ie dinosaurs); a cassette of sung and spoken nursery rhymes; and simple musical instruments like drums or xylophone.

How to help
* Keep books on a low shelf so your child has easy access to them. Board and other durable books can be kept in the toybox.

* Talk about what you've read to encourage thinking skills, vocabulary and comprehension.

* Have a box of first musical instruments, such as a recorder, drums or xylophone.

* Consider a music class where your child can listen to and join in with music. Ask around - your local maternal and child health centre should be able to tell you about classes in your local area.

Two to three years
Now that your child's speech is becoming more fluent, reading really helps boost her vocabulary and expand her understanding of the world. Children who've been read to as babies score higher in numeracy and reading tests at school age.

Music may also help boost thinking skills. Studies at the University of California suggest that early exposure to music may help develop spatial awareness, as well as future logic and maths skills.

Things she'll love
Your child will love longer stories with a variety of subjects ie home life, playgroup, hospital; fairytales; magic or adventure stories; rhymes and poems; counting and shape books; alphabet and word books; simple information books; a wider range of cassettes such as action songs or stories with music; cassettes of children's musical classics such as Peter and the Wolf by Prokofiev or Carnival of the Animals by Saint-Seans.

How to help
* Make regular library visits, and let your child choose some books.

* Point words out to your child on signs, posters, shop windows, railway stations.

* Listen to CDs together and encourage your child to join in the singing or act out bits.

* Play your child your favourite music, from South American to Bach.

* Switch on the radio or stereo instead of the TV or video.

comments powered by Disqus

Related articles

 
 
instagram
  • In our latest issue of Mother & Baby magazine we're introducing you to our 12 mummy bloggers who have joined our team of online contributors. Grab your copy to find their blogs and read their interviews @lifelovehiccups @vegiesmugglers @theyoungmummy @beafunmum @seanasmithpix

    mother and baby In our latest issue of Mother & Baby magazine we're introducing you to our 12 mummy bloggers who have joined our team of online contributors. Grab your copy to find their blogs and read their interviews @lifelovehiccups @vegiesmugglers @theyoungmummy @beafunmum @seanasmithpix

    More from the team
  • Those eyes!!
This gorgeous girl is today's "Babe of the Day", via @jessie_maree_cee

Nominate your cherub to become our Babe of the Day by tagging your photo with #MBbabeoftheday @motherbaby_au

    mother and baby Those eyes!! This gorgeous girl is today's "Babe of the Day", via @jessie_maree_cee Nominate your cherub to become our Babe of the Day by tagging your photo with #MBbabeoftheday @motherbaby_au

    More from the team
  • In this month's issue of Mother & Baby magazine @officialtamminsursok and her daughter, Phoenix are our gorgeous covergirls. 
Tammin talks about Hollywood and juggling motherhood; "Becoming a parent is a big adjustment and identity shift. I don’t think it comes straightaway to everyone, or as naturally as people may think." Click our profile link and search "Tammin Sursok" for her full interview.

    mother and baby In this month's issue of Mother & Baby magazine @officialtamminsursok and her daughter, Phoenix are our gorgeous covergirls. Tammin talks about Hollywood and juggling motherhood; "Becoming a parent is a big adjustment and identity shift. I don’t think it comes straightaway to everyone, or as naturally as people may think." Click our profile link and search "Tammin Sursok" for her full interview.

    More from the team
  • We've interviewed Sophie from @theyoungmummy for our latest magazine. Read our chat with her on motherandbaby.com.au

    mother and baby We've interviewed Sophie from @theyoungmummy for our latest magazine. Read our chat with her on motherandbaby.com.au

    More from the team
  • You don't need to be a size 10 to look fabulous during your pregnancy. Fashion designer @mammabellestyle shows us how bloggers @girlwithcurves and @icurvy rock a curvy pregnancy.

Read the article at motherandbaby.com.au and search "Plus size maternity"

    mother and baby You don't need to be a size 10 to look fabulous during your pregnancy. Fashion designer @mammabellestyle shows us how bloggers @girlwithcurves and @icurvy rock a curvy pregnancy. Read the article at motherandbaby.com.au and search "Plus size maternity"

    More from the team
  • The never-ending story!

    mother and baby The never-ending story!

    More from the team
  • Little London you are adorable with your sunny smile and curly hair. You were an easy pick for today's Babe of the Day, via @Katedblasi_photography

Share your photo and tag it #MBbabeoftheday @motherbaby_au and we might select your photo for our next Babe of the Day.

    mother and baby Little London you are adorable with your sunny smile and curly hair. You were an easy pick for today's Babe of the Day, via @Katedblasi_photography Share your photo and tag it #MBbabeoftheday @motherbaby_au and we might select your photo for our next Babe of the Day.

    More from the team
  • A big happy birthday to @jodigordon who recently turned the big 3-0. We love this gorgeous snap of Jodi with her bub, Aleeia taken at her birthday bash!

    mother and baby A big happy birthday to @jodigordon who recently turned the big 3-0. We love this gorgeous snap of Jodi with her bub, Aleeia taken at her birthday bash!

    More from the team
  • Pregnant and looking for some stylish advice & inspiration? Grab your copy of our latest issue of Pregnancy Life + Style via MagShop.com or in supermarkets & newsagents

    mother and baby Pregnant and looking for some stylish advice & inspiration? Grab your copy of our latest issue of Pregnancy Life + Style via MagShop.com or in supermarkets & newsagents

    More from the team
  • Long weekends are never long enough!

    mother and baby Long weekends are never long enough!

    More from the team