How Music Helps Newborn Babies Brain and Emotional Development

MY FAVOURITE MUSIC...
Image by nadworks via Flickr

During foetal development the auditory system forms extremely early, the ear is actually the first sensory organ to develop brain connections.

During the first weeks in the womb a baby’s ability to process sound and music grows stronger.

When a baby is born he or she is already able to recognise familiar tunes and distinguish between the voice of his parents and other peoples voices.

It’s been proven that babies prefer songs sung by their parents to radio or CD music, I would therefore recommend parents record themselves singing a soothing lullaby.

Babies show a preference for soothing classical music over heavy rock and studies done in Neonatal Intensive Care Units with premature infants show that soothing music from the Baroque period can lower the blood pressure and stress hormones of these young babies.

How Babies Respond to Music

Birth to Six Months: By this age most babies respond to music playing, they will move their body in time to the music. They will turn their heads towards sounds that catch their attentions and cry in response to unpleasant noises.

Six Months to One Year: As an infant’s eye hand coordination develops they become more mobile; babies will grasp and manipulate objects. This means that a baby can shake a rattle and understands that the shaking causes the noise to occur. Babies begin to clap their hands in response to music and parents should this behviour.

Songs to Sing with Babies

It doesn’t matter if you have a wonderful voice or not or even if you sing out of tune. Try singing a lullaby such as “Hush, Little Baby” before putting your baby down for a nap.

Hush Little Baby

Hush, little baby, don’t say a word.
Papa’s gonna buy you a mockingbird

And if that mockingbird won’t sing,
Papa’s gonna buy you a diamond ring

And if that diamond ring turns brass,
Papa’s gonna buy you a looking glass

And if that looking glass gets broke,
Papa’s gonna buy you a billy goat

And if that billy goat won’t pull,
Papa’s gonna buy you a cart and bull

And if that cart and bull turn over,
Papa’s gonna buy you a dog named Rover

And if that dog named Rover won’t bark
Papa’s gonna buy you a horse and cart

And if that horse and cart fall down,
You’ll still be the sweetest little baby in town.

One, Two ,Three

One, two, three, four, five,
Once I caught a fish alive,
Six, seven, eight, nine, ten,
Then I let it go again.
Why did you let it go?
Because it bit my finger so.
Which finger did it bite?
This little finger on my right.

Lavender’s Blue

Lavender’s blue, dilly dilly,
Lavender’s green
When you are King, dilly dilly,
I shall be Queen

Who told you so, dilly dilly,
Who told you so?
‘Twas my own heart, dilly dilly,
That told me so

Call up your friends, dilly, dilly
Set them to work
Some to the plough, dilly dilly,
Some to the fork

Some to the hay, dilly dilly,
Some to thresh corn
Whilst you and I, dilly dilly,
Keep ourselves warm

Lavender’s blue, dilly dilly,
Lavender’s green
When you are King, dilly dilly,
I shall be Queen

Who told you so, dilly dilly,
Who told you so?
‘Twas my own heart, dilly dilly,
That told me so.

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Amy
    Dec 27, 2009 @ 15:42:24

    Great post! As the mother of a preemie we used music in the NICU and beyond and it was crucial in our bonding process. We are so passionate about it that we developed http://www.lullabylink.com where parents can get ideas as to how to use music with their babies, find lyrics to lullabies and watch videos to learn the melodies. Thanks for your great work!

    Reply

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