Tag Archives: infants

A Baby’s Musical World

Guest Post by Music Educator, Leslie Denning of Music With Miss Leslie

As an early childhood music educator, I’ve often gotten looks that range from shock to incredulity when I ask parents if they would be interested in music for their babies. I know that in their minds, they see a baby sitting down at the piano and learning to play. Impossible! they say. And they are right. However, that’s not what music education for babies is all about.

Research into early childhood music education has uncovered some interesting things about babies in music, such as:

  • Babies seem to remember and respond to music they hear in utero
  • Babies seem to be born with the ability to feel a beat
  • Music is one of the seven intelligences, which also includes linguistic, logical-mathematical, spatial kinesthetic, interpersonal, and intrapersonal intelligences

There is a lot more going on in a baby’s musical world than meets the eye.

Most mommies and daddies are ecstatic over their newborns and are anxious to do whatever they can to maximize their baby’s potential. There is an often bewildering array of educational toys, electronic devices, books, DVDs, and CDs aimed at helping parents help their children. However, sometimes the simplest things can be the most meaningful to children. Children are usually happier to play with a box, rather than what came in it. And what do you think your baby will value more: a Bose CD player or a loving mommy or daddy cradling him in their arms, looking into their eyes, and singing a song?

There a lot of products that are marketed to be played to babies, when what babies need is for parents to cuddle, play, and interact with them. One of the greatest satisfactions I have had as an early childhood music teacher is to see the joy that comes between parent and child when they make music together – simple music that reaches down to the child and reflects back to the parent. Taking the time to make music with your baby will give enormous benefits to both of you.

Guest post by Leslie Denning, better known as Miss Leslie, is a Missouri-certified music educator, Musikgarten-certified instructor, and owner of her own music studio in Dixon, MO, Second Street Music Academy http://secondstreetmusic.com where she teaches private piano, guitar, and voice lessons to children and adults.  She also has an online store Music with Miss Leslie.net  http://musicwithmissleslie.net which specializes in quality music merchandise for younger children.  You may find out more about her, as well as find music education articles and activities, at Music with Miss Leslie.com  http://musicwithmissleslie.com


When To Introduce Music To Your Child?

When to Introduce Music To Your Child?

You’ve Already Begun!

One of the things that surprises and delights most new parents is how awake and aware their infant or young child is. Although they can’t walk or talk like an adult, it is still clear that they are responding to their environment; learning, growing and taking in what is around them. So what is the right time to introduce music…? The answer to that you’ve already begun!

Even while your baby was still in the womb, he or she basked in the beauty of your voice and moved to the rhythm of your heartbeats. So; without knowing it, you’ve probably already opened their world to the wonder and sound of music. Now it’s just a matter of building on that great foundation and exploring more ways that baby, Mom and the whole family can enjoy and share some musical fun.

So, let’s start with the obvious.

Music helps set the pace when you want to get things done and get moving. Your child will easily connect with the beat in the same way they’ve already begun to follow your voice, your tone of voice and your verbal cues. If you sing with them or tap out a rhythm, they will focus on the activity even more and it’s a nice way of drawing their attention to words or rhythms. And don’t feel self-conscious. Not only do you have a captive audience – you have an adoring one. Nothing will ever sound as sweet to a child as the sound of the voice of someone that loves them.

Best of all, music is just amazing when setting a relaxing tone for naptime or bedtime… for both grown-ups and children. Although it isn’t a cure-all, if everything else is in order, a sleepy baby can be lulled to dreamland with just the right combination of sounds as part of a bedtime or naptime ritual. And relaxing music you enjoy can create a quiet oasis for mom or dad – even if you have to get back up and keep going after your child has gone to sleep.

Favorite naptime or sleepytime music? I’ll tell you about some of mine in future blogs. But for now, I’d love to hear what you parents have as favorite quiet time music choices. Please comment, drop me a line and let me know.

Have a great and musical day!


You’ve got a baby, a toddler or a young child around the house. Congratulations. You’re ecstatic, you’re overjoyed and you’re probably … exhausted.

The last thing you need are more items on your to-do list. But here’s the good news. Making music with, for and around your little one can be a great process that not only awakens their senses, deepens bonds and increases brain power – it can also be relaxing, fun and nourishing for you, too. It’s one of those glorious win/win situations in life. The more art, music and creativity you bring into your family’s life – the more everyone will blossom and grow.

I created this blog as a nice little space for you to explore some fun ideas to make your day more happy and harmonious.

I hope you enjoy …Tiny, Tapping Toes! If you’d like to find out more about me, feel free to visit my music website for kids – winner of a 2009 Parent’s Choice award – www.dariamusic.com.

And please share your ideas, suggestions and feedback – I can’t wait to hear from you!


Multicultural performer, Daria (Daria Marmaluk-Hajioannou) has the most awesome job of traveling the world and singing for peace. She’s traveled to 16 different countries to share music in communities as diverse as World Expo in Seville, Spain, an Arab Peace camp in Israel, musical workshops in barrios of Lima as well as remote villages of rural Peru and on US Native American Reservations.

Her cd’s have won over five national awards and her original songs are used around the planet in “Teaching Tolerance” and “Respecting Others” curriculum. Her “I Have A Dream” song is used widely in the USA to celebrate Martin Luther King Day.

For complete information on DARIA, plus lots of great musical activities, check out her website at www.dariamusic.com.