Preschool Songs With Actions
I believe in the benefits of music and movement classes and activities for preschoolers.
Children start to learn and develop habits at an early age, so it is essential to teach them educational but fun lessons and activities that they will continue to use in their physical and cognitive development as they get older.
The music materials and resources that I offer at Teach Preschool Music, like lesson plans, activities, and songs are designed to be used as movement-based preschool music activities.
Kids love to dance, jump, and move around to the beat of songs they like and recognize, whether they are doing this independently or with playmates.
Some parents mistakenly see dancing and playing as a waste of time or think their children are just being silly. They think that their kids aren’t learning anything with this style of teaching.
The truth is that movement-based activities are the most developmentally appropriate way to help children at this age experience music.
Action songs play a significant factor in developing this skill.
What Are Action Songs?
Songs or nursery rhymes that have sing-song phrases and movements are referred to as action songs.
These songs are an outlet for children to move around and have fun, but they can also be beneficial in other ways.
Action songs can help toddlers and preschoolers enhance their creative language, vocabulary, and motor skills. (1) These are some of the other benefits for children who learn action songs or rhymes:
- Enhanced hand-eye coordination
- Improved listening skills and the ability to follow directions
- Language skills are improved
- Reading readiness is enhanced
- Promotes creativity
- Develops social skills
- Fosters self-confidence
- Develops a love for music
- Reinforces core educational concepts like colors, counting, animals, and the alphabet
It is natural for a child to want to move around and be active.
I understand that as the parent, caregiver, or teachers in a child’s life, it can become frustrating or exhausting when they run around and move about, but that is exactly what they should be doing at this age.
If you aren’t sure that your child is learning from the songs and rhymes that you use at home or you’re having a hard time finding the right resources, I have some great action songs for you to try with your preschooler:
How Action Songs Can Help Your Preschoolers
Just one year after the clichéd “terrible twos,” your toddler is ready to move on to their preschool stage. The preschool years, ages three to five, are a crucial time that sets the foundation for school-based learning to come.
This stage of learning happens automatically as kids naturally interact with responsive caregivers and take an interest in and explore their surroundings. The human brain is built to learn, and the interaction and learning that occurs during the preschool ages help to strengthen neural connections.
Therefore, action songs that get children moving around and playing are helpful. Goals for your preschoolers during this stage include: (2)
- To develop fine motor skills by safely using scissors, grasping a pencil, coloring, and forming letters and numbers.
- Self-regulation involves their attention span, focus, and the ability to sit and listen for extended periods.
- Healthy separation, soothing themselves, and frustration tolerance are a part of emotion regulation.
- Their social development goals during this time are empathy, sharing, taking turns, and conflict resolution.
- Other milestones during this time are identifying letters and numbers, associating sounds with the appropriate letter, counting, and the basic concepts of shapes, colors, and textures.
- Activities of daily living and exercising independence are performed by putting on and taking off clothing items and managing their belongings.
- Using objects in novel ways and sharing imagination is an example of creativity and imaginary play.
- They believe in themselves as a learner.
How You Can Effectively Incorporate Movement & Activities into Songs
According to Michigan State University, it is vital for young children to be physically active every day. Research suggests that encouraging movement and activity in young children helps to improve memory, perception, language, attention, emotion, and decision making.
Did you know that learning increases by 90 percent when you combine language with movement? When children develop fundamental movement skills, it helps to increase their school readiness and school success later in life. It also assists with setting the foundation for a healthy and active lifestyle as they get older. (3)
Fundamental movement and sports skills, or “physical literacy,” help young children move with confidence and control. The benefits to learning movement skills include improvement in strength, posture, sleep, social skills, and it gives children a sense of achievement. (4)
You and I know that kids have no issue when it comes to moving around. It’s second nature for them. Daily activity helps to promote healthy growth and development. When a healthy, active lifestyle is established in the early years, children will continue this habit and reap its benefits for the rest of their lives.
You can encourage movement and activity in your child by asking if they want to be a part of a team, do it with a friend or family, or perform the action on their own. Part of your role as the parent is to offer support and guidance about starting to be more active and how much activity is needed. Your child should feel motivated and take enjoyment in these activities.
The more they like a particular activity or movement, the more they will want to do it and other activities that are present to them. This is why I promote songs with actions, because music is one of many activities that preschoolers enjoy. (5)
Why You Should Use Music as A Learning Tool in Your Preschool Classrooms
The positive effects that music has on young kids are evident early in life. When they are toddlers, children can identify rhythm and move to the beat of the music. Music also has cognitive benefits that support early development. Some of the ways that music is beneficial to the development of toddlers are: (6)
- Increase in sensory development – Music exposure can help create pathways between the brain cells that increase when music is linked to different activities like dancing.
- Improved literacy and numeracy – Exposing a child to music improves their natural ability to decode sounds and words. Nursery rhymes are helpful because, by singing, your child learns to identify sound patterns through repetition.
- Better mood – Parents often use lullabies and songs to calm their children down to get them to sleep. Music can also be used to uplift their spirit.
- Coordination – Don’t worry if your little one hasn’t mastered the lyrics to a song yet. They are still able to move to the rhythm of music, which is a form of learning. Music makes children want to move, which assists in developing fine and gross motor skills.
- Vocabulary – Your child doesn’t need to know the words to a rhyme or song to understand the storytelling in a particular piece.
Your child doesn’t need to be the next superstar singer to benefit from music education. The do-re-mis that kids learn helps them to strive in ways that go beyond the basic alphabet.
Research shows that music facilitates learning in other subjects and improves skills that are used in other areas. (7)
Mary Luehrisen, the executive director of the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) Foundation, said, “A music-rich experience for children of singing, listening and moving is bringing a severe benefit to children as they progress into more formal learning.” (LPB PBS)
If your child is interested in playing an instrument in the early stages, this inclination should be nurtured. Activity and movement to music that is intentional should be a part of the developmental years.
Your child will be equipped to thrive in music lessons
- If they are given enough time to achieve developmental milestones relative to movement and coordination
- When the adults in their lives display love and appreciation for music
- When given opportunities to learn and move through music
It’s never too late to get your child moving and learning. As I mentioned in this article, music is a critical element in their growth and development. It is a fun and creative way to encourage kids to move around, learn rhythm, patterns, and more.
This kind of play is crucial to their cognitive and physical development. I am a firm believer in action songs for preschoolers to get them moving and enhance their learning capabilities. My courses and materials are an excellent resource for parents, teachers, and caregivers to learn about the benefits of music education in young kids.