When was the last time you and your children had a good, old-fashioned sing-a-long? Now, even though I, personally, love to sing loud and often (something my family and friends don’t ALWAYS love…), I do understand that it’s not everyone’s favorite pastime. I will say, however, that the benefits of singing with your children might just make it worthwhile for those of you who wouldn’t otherwise be inclined. And, luckily for us, kids are a very kind audience and don’t tend to be bothered by subpar vocal abilities.
Did you know that every time you sing songs with your children, you are helping them to hear the smaller sounds in words? This early literacy skill is called phonological awareness and will help them later when they try to sound out words as they learn to read. So, singing isn’t just for fun; it’s actually teaching your kids an important skill.
If you’re looking for some good, new kids’ music, I’ve got a few suggestions for you. We sing some really fun songs during our storytimes here at the Washington-Centerville Public Library, and we’ve made a Storytime Playlist of our favorites. The playlist gives the song title and tells the CD’s name and call number, so you can easily locate it.
Another great place to find kids’ music is through the library’s music service, Freegal (http://www.wclibrary.info/ecollection/emusic.asp). I’m OBSESSED with Freegal, and I think you will be, too. Freegal has millions of songs that are available for you to download and keep forever (yes, you read that correctly—FOREVER!). All you have to do is enter your library card number, and you’re able to download 3 songs per week to your iTunes account or whatever music program you use on your computer. There’s even a smartphone app that allows you to download songs straight to your phone. It’s amazing. Each library card number can get 3 songs each week. So, if everyone in your family doesn’t have a library card yet, you may want to take care of that!
So, get out there, get some new music, and start singing!