Learning a new song or rhyme
At George Dent and Borough Road Nurseries we enjoy singing lots of songs and rhymes. Singing songs and rhymes is a fun way to help your child develop their language and communication skills. Before your child learns to read and write they learn to talk and listen, so the more opportunities they have to practise these skills the better. They are laying the foundations of communication and language that they will need throughout their lives.
“Learning rhymes together, especially when all the family get involved, helps children to feel confident with words and to become good listeners. It will also help them as they begin to learn to read.”
Julia Donaldson, Waterstones Children’s Laureate 2012-2013
Lots of songs and rhymes include actions which help develop coordination, and gross and fine motor skills. They also add fun and surprise giving many opportunities for smiles and laughter.
Learning songs and rhymes together promotes strong, loving relationships which are so important for emotional well-being.
We hope that your child will know a whole range of songs and rhymes by the time they leave us, so each half term we encourage you and your child to join us in learning two songs/rhymes. You are your child’s first teacher and we really value your involvement.
Learning a new song or rhyme
The great thing about learning songs and rhymes is that you can say or sing them anywhere; on the way to nursery, at bath time, in the car or when you are joining your child in their play, and the best way to help your child learn a new song or rhyme is to sing it with them lots of times. Do not worry about your own singing ability, they won’t. Involve all the family: brothers, sisters, grandparents and other family members can all join in and this adds to the fun.
After your child has heard the song a few times they will probably start to join in with some of the words. Don’t worry if at first your child seems a little reluctant, by listening to you they will be learning the words and when they feel confident enough, they will start to join in.
Here are a few other ways to help your child learn a song or rhyme
Miss out the final word of each line and see if they can fill in the gap.
Start a line, they finish it.
Encourage your child to sing a section on their own.
Acting out the song or rhyme and adding actions will really help them remember the words.
Encourage your child to perform the song for others e.g. Over the phone to grandma.
Can they teach it to their brother or sister?
Talk about the characters in the song or rhyme and what is happening.
Find the rhyme in a book, look at and talk about the illustrations together.
Make up alternative songs/rhymes or stories about them.
Above all, give lots of praise and encouragement!
Apart from using the video on the nursery website, please do not rely on tablets and phones to teach your child a new song or rhyme. Face to face, eye contact, seeing expression and mouth movement are all so important. Singing along to CD or downloads is fine.
The most important person is you giving encouragement, attention and feedback.
These are a selection of rhymes we also sing at Nursery. We hope you enjoy singing them at home and practising the actions
The 'Hello' Song (Our Welcome Song)
Clap, Slap (A Counting Song)
The Coffee, Coffee Rhyme
Here is Baby
A Fine Machine
I Dig my Garden
Baa Baa Black Sheep
Little Yellow Duck
Open Shut Them
Wind the Bobbin Up
Hey Diddle Diddle