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Baby Nursery Rhymes

Repetition and rhyming cadences are very attractive for young children. They become familiar quickly, and children as young as one year old will be able to begin to recite rhymes because of hearing it so often. Children love repetition, even if we get sick of it as adults. They thrive from repetition, and nursery rhymes are a great way to meet that need.

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Nursery rhymes help with pre literacy and socialization in infants

Nursery rhymes allow children to hear the rhythm and beat of language, which then prepares them for speech later. Many nursery rhymes have hand motions, and this allows young children about symbols for letters, words, and numbers. All the different patterns in rhymes help children with predictions and confidence. The repetition also helps children with their memorization skills and confidence. There are so many nursery rhymes out there that will help infants bond with their caretakers and introduce them to new sounds and inflections. Starting at a young age and then continuing into the preschool level has proven to help children with their reading skills later on. Choose many different nursery rhymes that include hand motions, different voice sounds, alliteration, and rhyming sounds. Nursery rhymes have stood the test of time simply because they are known to be so good for child development. Enjoy reciting them with children for the nostalgia but also for the importance of what it does for cognitive and social development.


For this activity you will need:

Learning Outcomes






Clapping along Responding to voice sounds Trying to mimic hand motions and lyrics


Step 1:

Throughout the day when babies are awake, sing/recite a nursery rhyme with infants/toddlers. This can be done in a small group or one-on-one. This is something you can do during diaper changes, on a walk with the stroller, during tummy time, etc.

Step 2:

Speak/sing slowly and clearly when reciting the rhyme. Be sure to use different voices for different characters, and make your voice go high and go low.

Step 3:

Use hands to do motions when appropriate.

Step 4:

Do the rhyme a few times to get the children used to the song/rhyme.

Step 5:

If you have the puppets, finger puppets, or other visuals, use them when appropriate.

Playful questions

  • What is my favorite rhyme?

  • Can I create my own nursery rhyme?

  • Should we sing it again?

  • Do you like this rhythm?

  • Can you sing it with me?

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