Ez and Fonz have always been big music fans, so when I was asked if we would like to review a new album of classic children's songs and nursery rhymes, I jumped at the chance.
Toybox is the second part of a series of albums for kids, created by The Rainbow Collections – singer Sophie Barker from Zero 7, and successful producer KK. The album includes songs such as 'Old Macdonald', 'If You're Happy and You Know It', and 'The Grand Old Duke Of York' (one of our all-time favourites). Sophie and KK have produced their own unique and modern take on the original classics, without making the tunes unrecognisable, and there are some fantastic rhythms - I love the calypso-style version of 'If You're Happy And You Know It'. The album's been a big hit with the babies, and it's the sort of thing I don't mind having playing, because it's actually very pleasant to listen to!
I've noticed that Fonz in particular, really thrives on music and rhythm. Here's a little clip of him enjoying Toybox...
Family and parenting expert Jenni Trent Hughes has shared some top tips to help parents get the most our of music and playtime with their children:
- Play music and sing daily and as often as possible
- Make instruments out of household items. An empty plastic bottle and a handful of beans; a wooden spoon and the lid of a pan. The more imaginative, the better
- Act out the songs with wild exaggerated gestures. Children love laughing at their parents
- Use music to enhance the child's mood. Sitting on the sofa, having a cuddle and 'singing along with mummy' is a memory that will be treasured forever
- Write songs about pets, siblings, food and favourite toys – anything that will expand a child's imagination, vocabulary and knowledge base
Toybox is available now from Amazon.co.uk, Play.com and HMV.
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