The 10 best early childhood songs are about fun, learning and helping to sing our young ones to sleep. In addition to being playful early childhood songs teach children about the world around them. Early childhood songs teach about the alphabet, animals and nature amongst other things. Many of the best early childhood songs have been passed down from many generations.
- “Alphabet Song” This tune is not only fun but has been a learning tool for many, many years. The song goes through the letters of the alphabet in sequence to the rhyme of “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star”. How many times have we adults sung this song in our heads looking something up that is alphabetical order?
- “Old McDonald Had a Farm” This is a song about an old farmer named McDonald and the animals on his land. This is a great teaching song; each verse is about a different animal on the farm and the sound that particular animal makes. The tune has a simple rhythm and is a favorite for kids to sing in a group.
- “Hush Little Baby” This lullaby has a parent trying to stop a baby from crying. The tune softly goes through a number of rewards that the parent promises the infant. The first reward promised is a mockingbird; the tune goes on to promise a diamond ring if the mockingbird doesn’t sing. This lullaby is believed to be American in origin because of the reference to the mockingbird.
- “The Wheels on the Bus” This lovely song tells of a bus ride, the wheels go round, the wipers go swish, the horn blows and the driver tells people to move to the rear. This fun tune prepares children to ride the bus to school. The lesson to be learned is that riding the bus to school should not be a scary event.
- “Here Comes Peter Cottontail” This early childhood song is a seasonal tune about Easter. Peter is “Hoppin’ down the bunny trail” bringing an Easter basket filled with goodies for all the kids. This song is exciting to young children because it brings the expectation of a present.
- “The Itsy Bitsy Spider” This tune tells the tale of a spider trying to climb out of a water sprout. The rain washes the poor spider back down the sprout. The sun comes out and there is the spider climbing out again. The subtle message in this tune is to keep trying and you will succeed.
- “Rock a Bye Baby” This lullaby believed to be from the 1700’s doesn’t have the happy connotation of most early childhood songs. It sings of the bow breaking and the cradle falling. It is believed to be based on the Native American custom of hanging wooden framed cradles from trees.
- “London Bridge” This childhood tune has numerous versions and the meaning of the song is not clear. The song refers to “My Fair Lay” although she has never been identified. Some researchers believe the song is based on an 11th Century invasion by the Norse; others believe it simply has to do with the difficulty of establishing bridges across the Thames. Regardless of the background the song is a childhood favorite and is used in a number of games.
- “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town” This Holiday tune is a favorite of children of all ages. The song was written by Fred Coots and Haven Gillespie in 1934; the song has been performed by a variety of artists. As the tune goes, Santa is coming to town, he has made a list and you had better be good. This lovely song is exciting for young children anticipating Christmas Day.
- “Rain, Rain, Go Away” Versions of this nursery rhyme have been around for centuries. As the tune goes, it is raining and the children would like to the rain to go away so they can go outside and play. The song teaches children that we all deal with disappointments.
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