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Sing-Along Thursday April 16, 2020

10 songs to sing while staying home with kids

Did you know: Singing reduces stress, release endorphins, exercises the lungs AND is one of the 5 practices of early literacy?  (Along with reading, writing, talking, and playing…)

At Decorah Public Library, singing is a part of Toddle Time, Baby Time, Preschool Parties, and many of our Outreach story times.  Children’s and Young Adult Librarian Rachael Button wanted to share the following songs from JBrary, one of her favorite online resources, with families in our community who might be looking for ways to fold singing into their daily routines.  (Songs linked in the titles.)


Changing Diapers:  I’ve never used this song in a storytime but I came across it on the Jbrary and thought it might be a useful song for some of our caregivers. (Fact: I know that for many changing diapers may not be—as the songs says—“lots of fun” but it is an opportunity to show care and gentleness to your little one.)  I appreciate that this song folds an opportunity for play and singing into a regular routine.


We Ask for Milk Like This: I love how this song incorporates American Sign Language (and pleases/thank-yous!)  A really wonderful way to bring music into ASL practice for little ones.


Wake-Up Feet:  I use this song as an opening song for most of the library’s Baby Time programs.  It’s a great song for caregivers to sing while they move and interact with baby. (Fun for bath-time, diaper changes, or any other times that baby could use some structured music and movement.)  This is also a fun song to sing with older children while you both dance and follow the movement instructions.

Little Raindrops Falling Down:  I had a lot of fun singing this rain song with toddlers and preschoolers during our early March storytimes.  It lends itself to big actions and lots of movement.

Roly Poly: A song about opposites.  This one is fun to learn together and continue to add to as a family as you think of more opposites to sing and dance together.

All Ages:

Mmm Ahh Went the Little Green Frog: This song is so silly and has some great vowel sounds.  Perfect for little ones still learning language and for older siblings who want a playful song to sing.

Zoom, Zoom, Zoom: This song has lots of movement.  I’ve used it as a lap bounce at Baby Time (caregivers lift babies when we “blast off”), as a movement song for Toddle Time, and a thematic story song at our January Preschool Party in Space.  I could imagine this song being fun to combine with other space based stories or astronaut play during a rainy day at home.

Rain is Falling Down  This is a really calming song.  I’ve sung it at the library at both Baby Time and Toddler Time with scarves but you could use whatever motions you’d like or whatever props you have on hand.  I love how gentle it is and have found it to be a very settling song at our library and Outreach storytimes.

Everybody Knows I Love My Toes  I love how body-positive this song is and I really enjoy it’s swinging rhythm.  I’ve only used it once at the library (at Baby Time)—but I’m hoping (because it has a lot of verses) that once story time resumes we can work it into our regular rotation so that caregivers, children, and I can become more familiar with it.

Mr. Sun:   It seems to me that many of us could use some sunshine and summer vibes right now.  I’ve used this song for Baby Time and Toddler Time with a parachute but I think it could also be very fun to sing with kids while blowing bubbles, going for a walk, or dancing/moving together in your house.

Other Resources:

Want more songs?  Award-winning musician and author Emily Arrow is streaming daily musical storytimes on her youtube channel at 12 pm CT M-F

More locally, song leader Liz Rog typically runs many free or low cost musical events for families in our community.  Stay tuned to DecorahNow for opportunities to sing together when it’s safe to meet in-person once again.