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Music is an important part of a baby's development but at different stages in their early life it can be used in different ways.
Newborns love music played softly. Prepare a nice warm room, cuddle up with your baby and put on some lovely relaxing music. Rock slightly to the rhythm and enjoy some quiet, peaceful time together.
3-6 month old babies love looking at you and your face so this is a great time to introduce singing to your little one. They will enjoy hearing your voice (no matter how good or bad you are at singing!) and will love to be near your face as you sing. Perhaps tap the beat of the music gently on their feet too!
6-9 month old babies are looking for a little more stimulation so this is a good time to introduce actions to your songs and rhymes. Gently hold their hands and guide their arms through the songs. Bounce them on your knee in time with the music and perhaps introduce puppets or teddies that dance along to the music too!
9-12 month old babies will be able to hold rattles and instruments when they are doing their 'singing'. Get hold of some nice bells or wooden rattles and shake in time with the music. See if baby can copy the sounds you make when you sing or the sounds the instruments make. Don't forget to have a dance around together to music. Sway, bounce, and even jig if you feel like it!
12-18 month olds will enjoy moving around a little more to music. Play all sorts of music - not just kiddie songs. Put on your favourite tracks and see how your little ones like it. Do some fast dancing, or slow dancing too. And, don't forget to have some relaxing time together too. Listen to the music in a comfy chair and have some down time.
Have fun and enjoy yourselves!