Music to buy for your Brisbane Baby
Through exposure to musical variety, the groundwork is laid in the form of new neural connections in the brain – making the brain better able to learn. The early years are the perfect time for exposure to a rich variety of music, including different instruments, voices, rhythms and tonalities.
For a lover of music, it was almost impossible to narrow this down to a list of 10, but in this moment, here are my top 10 recommendations for musical diversity for your Brisbanekids…
- Classics for Kids (RCA Victor, 1993). A stunning selection of classical music composed for children, including excerpts from The Nutcracker Suite, Mother Goose Suite and Children’s Games. Available from http://www.cduniverse.com
- Putumayo Kids Presents World Playground A selection of kids’ music from all across the world – will get your kiddies grooving in no time!
- Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu – Gurrumul (Aria award winning singer from North East Arnhem Land). Perfect for children’s rest and quiet time, or adults’ relaxation.
- Movin’ – Hap Palmer This is a richly produced collection of original instrumental music by Hap Palmer written especially for movement exploration and creative movement activities. Can be purchased from http://www.cdbaby.com
- Prokofiev: Peter and the Wolf – Saint-Saens: Carnival of the Animals – Britten: The Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra. The version I have is by Eugene Ormandy & The Philadelphia Orchestra (Naxos, 1992), but it has been performed by many orchestras all over the world.
- Putumayo Kids Presents Jazz Playground This is a wonderful collection of international jazz songs for children. It celebrates the vibrant diversity and global influence of jazz and will get the whole family grooving!
- African Spirit or African Grace – both CDs by internationally renowed Soweto Gospel Choir This group will send musical shivers down your spine – simply divine to listen to.
- Kid’s Stuff by the King’s Singers and Dame Judi Dench Gorgeous choral music from one of the world’s best chorales brings characters and songs to life. Includes songs like ‘Teddy Bear’s Picnic’ and ‘Over the hill and far away’. Available from http://www.cduniverse.com
- Oomba Baroomba – Playschool I’m a sucker for Playschool; they have such great lyrics. Some of the songs on this CD are still personal favourites of mine like “Black Cat” and “Gerlumph” .
- Lullaby: Sweet Dreams for Children of All Ages (Philips, 1995). This charming CD features lullabies from around the world, arranged for cello and piano. Available from http://www.allmusic.com
If you asked any other music or early years educator they would likely have a completely different top 10 (as would I if you asked me again in a few weeks!) The point is, play lots of different music to your children. Their ears and their brain will thank you for it.
“Music education research indicates that children are more ‘open-eared’ when they are young; their music preferences are broad and amenable to extension. Children this age learn through exploration and are eager to investigate the various ways in which sounds are produced both vocally and with simple instruments. For them, the variations in timbre (or tone quality) and structure among music of different cultures are intriguing.”*
*“Bringing the World of Music to Your Child” by Constance L. McKoy, Ph.D., Tune In June 2003.
Beth Hendy is a Kindermusik teacher on the Northside of Brisbane