At the time of writing this blog post we are at the start of people quarantining themselves at home because of the outbreak of Coronavirus here in the UK. There are a whole host of amazing virtual entertainment and education options for people to look at to keep their children entertained/busy/educated. There are also lots of songs and music programmes for children to watch and sing along to and I thought it would be a great time to write about the ones we used to watch and, I’ll be honest, still do on a regular basis.
Before I continue, if you are reading this because you have a small child I would encourage you to sing along with your children as much as possible. Your voice is the best, most brilliant voice as far as your baby is concerned, much nicer to listen to for them than anyone else’s. So sing away to your heart’s content. And maybe enjoy the adoration, because as soon as they were able to do it my children told me to stop singing. Now it works to get them to do things I want them to do “Mummy will stop singing if you pick up your toys”…..
CBeebies is an excellent resource. On iPlayer they have song spotlights with songs from programmes like Waffle the Wonderdog, Maddie’s Do You Know, the brilliant Hey Duggee. The following programmes are particularly good for music too:
Mr Tumble, or Something Special is, of course, a multi-sensory show and there is a focus on Makaton sign language, however there are also a lot of Mr Tumble Songtime songs on the iPlayer. Our favourite is the Hokey Cokey. From when they were very small the children and I have done the Hokey Cokey, flying them around in my arms as babies, and now we hold hands and my children attempt the moves- it’s impossibly cute watching my 2 year old trying to work out which is her left leg or right leg! My son tries to go in and out of the circle as quickly as possible, and sometimes decides to just throw himself up and down the room in the chorus!
Tee and Mo
I love Tee and Mo. It’s such a lovely cartoon about the adventures of a monkey and his mum, voiced by Lauren Laverne. we discovered the cartoon via the CBeebies songtime section on iPlayer. They had two songs for Mother’s Day, A Bag Full of Love https://youtu.be/enVd6qX7FmU and Only One Mum https://youtu.be/ehntXOUUDio there is a Tee and Mo album, and for a while this was my 1 year old daughter’s favourite album to play in the car. She is 2 now, so obviously too old for that sort of thing. I am often tempted to listen to the album on my own now. The children’s favourite song from this is Are We Ready to Go but mine has to be the lovely lullaby Go to Sleep, beautiful song that I have sung to my children at bedtime.
YolanDa’s Band Jam
I started watching this with my 2 year old and she loves it. I would say that I probably wouldn’t watch it with younger children, but the. Again any exposure to music is great. YolanDa Brown is a saxophonist and, together with her band and invited guests they play music for children to play along with, dance along with, listen to. She has a variety of artists appearing as special guests from bands like The Lightning Seeds to solo percussionist Evelyn Glennie. This is a brilliant show, and if your children have even a slight liking of music watch it! Below is a fun clip from the show trying to wake up the drummer
When I had my son, despite having been a musician, I could not for the life of me think of any nursery rhymes. I knew loads, but as I had been working as a lawyer for a while they had all disappeared! So I looked on YouTube for some ideas of nursery rhymes to sing. I found loads!! Some are really good, others were odd to say the least! These are a few of our favourites:
Super simple songs
These are American song compilations and there are loads of them. There are nursery rhymes, phonics songs, Christmas songs, number songs all sorts. When my youngest was just a few months old and I had a 3 year old at home at the same time these were quite a life line as both children would be absolutely transfixed by them. We particularly like the Apples and Bananas song
When my little girl was born, my son was obsessed with dinosaurs. Utterly obsessed. We read about them, we drew them, we went to see them at the dinosaur museum and, of course, we found songs about them. Pinkfong had some great songs (they also do a version of the dreaded Baby Shark, so be warned of you want to avoid it!) Our favourite was Spinosaurus vs T Rex
This compilation was one of my husband’s favourites to put on and sing along to with the children while I made dinner (escaped for 10 minutes):
Ned and Nellie
One of the first compilations of nursery rhymes I watched with my son when he was tiny was Ned and Nellie’s nursery rhymes. Traditional songs with traditional tunes, and sung by a girl and her puppet friend. They are fun, recognisable and great to sing along to.