We began singing purely for comfort. I was truly shocked that even my singing could comfort my newborn baby. Over these few years, we've also learned to sing for any reason we can imagine. Some songs help to comfort or calm a boy who is sad or needs help transitioning to sleep (Rock-a-bye Baby, Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star). If we are playing and the stress level gets too high, we try to sing engaging songs (Open, Shut Them, Itsy Bitsy Spider, Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes) to redirect everyone, or mellow songs (My Bonnie Lies Over the Ocean) to lower the tension. If someone is really resistant to sleep, we choose something monotonous (The Ants Go Marching, Row, Row, Row Your Boat, Hush Little Baby)- it may not be fun, but it really works.
The real fun that we've found, however, is making up our own songs. When our Doggie Boys need more Doggie Songs (How Much Is That Doggie In the Window just wasn't enough!), we started singing:
- My Doggie Lies Over the Ocean (ala My Bonnie Lies Over the Ocean)
- Rock-a-bye Doggie on the Treetop (ala Rock-a-bye Baby)
- (To the tune of Twinkle, Twinkle) Doggie, doggie wag your tail; chase the kitty down the trail. Doggie, doggie, eat your food; eat it 'cause its really good. Doggie, doggie wag your tail; chase the kitty down the trail. *
- (To the tune of Twinkle, Twinkle) Backhoe, backhoe, truck that's big; how I like to watch you dig. Down at the construction site, digging through the day and night. Backhoe, backhoe, truck that's big; how I like to watch you dig. *
- (To the tune of Twinkle, Twinkle) Helicopter, flying high, soaring through the bright, blue sky. Your propeller spins around, and 'round, lifting you right off the ground. Helicopter, flying high, soaring through the bright, blue sky. *
- Dump truck, dump truck, dump truck, vrooming down the road. Dump truck, dump truck, picking up a load. (the first song Jason wrote)
- Truckery Rhymes, an entire book of truck-themed nursery rhymes
- There is a great tow truck song in the book, How Many Trucks Can A Tow Truck Tow?
- Row, row, row your boat, gently down the stream. Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily, life is but a dream.
- Tow, tow, tow your truck, powerfully down the street. Carefully, carefully, carefully, carefully, don't run over feet. *
- Throw, throw, throw your goat, swiftly through the trees. Scarily, scarily, scarily, scarily, flying through the breeze. *
I will clean your poo; these five words I swear to you. When you pee, I'm gonna change your diaper for you. I will clean your poo! *I'm honestly surprised that this is our only fully-fleshed-out diaper changing song. However, since Jason's potty learning adventures began, "It's Pot-ty, it's Potty Time!" Not the most appropriate song to parody for the kids, but too much fun to ignore! After all, conditions are perfect for going potty.
There are many, many more songs on Wikipedia (here and here), and for every song there are probably tens or hundreds of Youtube videos, if you need a reminder of the tune, motions, or dance steps. What are your favorite kids' songs? What songs have y'all made up? Please share!
*All of the original songs posted here are copyrighted by David Michael, used with permission.