Music to Their Ears
Music is all around us, and therefore all around your child, even in the womb. Our child’s ability to hear is fully developed by the fifth month of pregnancy, and it’s appropriate that the first beat she hears is the music of her mother’s heart. Your unborn baby depends on that constant beat, even after she is born and laid upon your chest, she is calmed by that reunion with it.
Aside from the beating of her mother’s heart, she has also been listening to mother’s talking and singing. While you were preparing for your little one’s arrival, tidying up the nursery for the last time, the little gift inside you came to enjoy your singing along to the radio or iPod. Also, as research shows, it doesn’t matter if you were singing along to Lil Wayne or Kid Rock, to an aria by Renee Flemming or Brahams Lullaby. Stimulation through music while in the womb instills a sense of confidence and relaxation after your child is born. Not only does your singing provide you and your baby with an excellent way to bond, it may also provide intellectual development to your baby.
According to research, exposure to music may benefit both physical and cognitive development. Music exposes your unborn or newly born infant to sensory experiences which help to build neural pathways in her brain and aid her educational development in the future.
While there are some specialists that maintain there is no concrete evidence of this, the music you provide to your unborn child creates an unbreakable bond. Infants love to hear you sing. Regardless of the fact that you may be a little off key and your sense of rhythm isn’t what it used to be, your singing calms and soothes your baby. It could be a song about folding clothes or preparing applesauce or mashed peas. Just sing away.
Your toddler will enjoy songs that involve more physical movement. The classic “Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes” for example will be appreciated even more when you join along. Remember to sing songs to your toddler about numbers, colors and letters. Music with these elements help your toddler to expand her vocabulary as well as enhance listening skills. More importantly, you are singing along and having fun with your little one, and your bond grows even deeper.