Music is something everyone loves, whether its rock, classical or cheesy pop. For children it can greatly improve their physical, behavioural and social skills. You might even have your own little Mozart or John Lennon. Lets’ look at what toys are currently available to get your little one started.
10 Best Musical Toys for Babies and Toddlers
1. Tulatoo Musical Instruments
This is a great musical starter kit by Tulatoo. It comes with 2 maracas, two egg shakers, two bells straps with velcro and an xylophone. We love the bright colours and the high quality of the materials, safe for babies and toddlers. It also come with a really handy clear bag for keeping the set neat and tidy. This kit is great for active toddlers who can run around with the velco bands on and make music as they go.
2. Chicco Baby Star Guitar
The Chicco baby Star Guitar is safe alternative for young children. It’s really durable so your little one can get used to holding a guitar. There is a roller instead of strings which helps to develop your little ones strumming motion before they move on to a real guitar. The ‘fret’ buttons help to keep up baby’s interest whilst teaching them the dexterity needed for guitar playing. The different sounds and volume control allow variety and stop you going crazy listening to the same tune a million times over.
3. Little Tikes Tap a Tune Drum
The Little Tikes Tap a Tune is perfect for your budding drummer. The size is large enough to be played with drumsticks and hands. We love the design of the toy as the stick can be neatly stored in the sides of the drum so they don’t get easily lost. Also the side of the drum have textured sides so you can use the drumsticks to create percussion sounds. It’s suitable from 6 months and robust enough to keep up with young children.
4. Halilit Baby Tambourine
The Halilit baby tambourine is a great option as a first musical instrument. The tambourine has such a delightful sound which appeals to babies. This tambourine is really safe for baby as the jingles are encased in plastic. The handle is designed for babies to hold easily on their own, and make as much noise as they want. It’s quite large and heavier than expected so we would recommend it for babies around 1 year or older.
5. John Lewis My First Piano
My First Piano by John Lewis is a great introduction to key playing for little ones. The bright and colourful keys are pressed giving a jingly xylophone sound. It’s very appealing to younger children. We love that is comes with little sound cards to play traditional nursery tunes. You can play them for baby and teach them as they grow. It’s really sturdy and will handle a lot of play from little ones. If you want to use as a xylophone you would need to buy a stick separately.
The ELC trumpet is great way to transition from percussion to wind instruments. It’s a really safe and fun design with a little smiley face on the end. This trumpet is the perfect size for little ones to learn how to hold and press the valves. You can teach your little one some simple tunes. We recommend this for older toddlers, but older siblings will love it too.
7. Melissa & Doug Band-in-a-Box
For a real instrument feel check out the Melissa & Doug Band-in-a-Box. The percussion instruments are all made from wood or metal but kid sized. The kit includes a tambourine, cymbals, maracas, clacker, tone blocks and a triangle. They are all stored in a handy wooden box so you child can explore the sounds themselves. This is sure to keep younger and older siblings entertained for hours.
8. Tobar Piano Mat
Remember that scene with Tom Hanks in ‘Big’? Now you can let your child have their very own floor piano. The Tobar Piano Mat is a great way for your kid to keep active and play music at the same time. We bet they will love to play this with friends or siblings. It’s great for family fun and even babies can join in as they learn to crawl. This toy would go down a hit at parties and BBQs with kids and adults.
9. Halilit Mini Rainbomaker
The Halilit Rainbomaker is ideal for young babies. The soothing sound is so relaxing, like falling rain. You little one will be mesmerised by the falling beads inside and provide many hour of entertainment. This is one of those simple toys that doesn’t appear much but really captivates your child. You can also use it as a rattling shaker to create different sounds for baby.
10. Bontempi Saxophone
The Bontempi Saxophone is a great choice for older toddlers who are eager to learn. Not only does it look like a cool mini saxophone, but the coloured keys help them to learn. The packaging comes with three songs to learn, but you could easily look up more online. It might look too complicated for little one but is no harder than a recorder to learn.
Fun Ideas for Musical Toys
A large range of musical instruments gives your child freedom to choose. Let them drum, bash, strum and shake until their hearts are content. You can even add in every day objects such as pot and pans for greater variety. This will help them recognise the cause and effect of making noise. Paly simple games like asking them to find an instrument that makes a big noise and then one which makes a little noise.
Having a few instruments to hand when reading a book can make it a lot more fun. Use them when characters make a noise or do certain things in the story. Even using a sound when turning the page will keep the book fun and engaging. Sleigh bells are fantastic for adding that little bit of magic to a Christmas themed book.
Learn to play basic nursery rhymes on the musical instruments and sing along. Some instruments may require you to learn notes, which are easily found online. Or play videos on Youtube and let your little one practice using the instruments to the playing songs.
Play a dancing game with the instrument to get your little on to recognise different beats and rhythms. Similar to ‘Simon says’ but instead of word use a different instrument or pattern of sound.
8 Benefits of Musical Toys
Music can be found in all aspects of life and culture. Music has so many benefits for children. Let’s look at a few.
1. Fine motor skills
Learning how to hold and play instruments helps develop your child’s motor skills. Instruments require different grips and motion. Practicing the coordination from a young age can transfer to other areas which require this important life skill.
2. Auditory learning
Some children will learn more when it sounds more appealing to them. This may mean music playing in the background or being soothed by white noise. Recognising an auditory learning will help them develop quicker and achieve more.
Repetition and beats can help children to remember things better. It creates the building blocks for memory techniques as they grow. Acting out the lyrics to a song can help a child to retain a message better too.
Studies have shown that children who play musical instruments have more intense information processing activity in the brain. Playing instruments is known to increase the volume of learning in the brain of children.
5. Social skills
Children who play musical instruments are more likely to join club or groups. This helps to enhance their social learning. It also helps to develop skills such as commination, problem solving, support and leadership.
Your child will learn that you need to practice thing over and over to become better at playing. This means lots of time making mistakes until they get it right. Exams will help them realise the importance of study. Making a commitment to learning will benefit them as they progress through school and their career.
You child will soon learn that people love music. They will enjoy performing in from of family and friends. If they take lessons their confidence will grow as they progress through the stages. They will probably have to play in from of teachers and to audiences at school or clubs.
8. Self Expression
Free play gives children a lot of room to express themselves. They may start by mimicking musician they like and then create their own playing style. They may also have a choice of instrument to develop their skills.
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