Skip to content
Bundle & Save →
Bundle & Save →
A baby is playing on a keyboard and sitting down on a carpet with musical books. Babies songs, children musical books, educational, music activities.

Your Baby's First Playlist - What Songs to Choose for Your Little One

At Cali's Books, we're all about exploring the magic of storytelling and singing along to some of the most beloved interactive baby songs. Singing to your baby isn't just a heartwarming activity – it's packed with benefits for both you and your little one. Let's dive into building baby's first playlist! Mary and her little lamb are waiting.

Benefits of Songs for Babies

Two girls are sitting down and holding musical books. Babies songs, children musical books, educational, music activities.

Did you know that when you sing to your baby, you're not just passing the time or trying to put them to sleep? You're also doing all of the following:

  • Strengthening your bond: Those moments shared in a melody can deepen your connection.
  • Boosting language development: Your baby is picking up on new sounds and words through repetition and rhythm.
  • Promoting reading readiness: The basics of songs can mirror the basics of reading! You'll have a little speed reader on your hands in no time.
  • Enhancing listening skills: From identifying tones to focusing on lyrics, listening skills are improved whenever we sing to our little bundles of energy.
  • Providing emotional interaction: When listening to you sing familiar songs, your child feels comfort, love, and a sense of belonging.
  • Introducing them to the wider family: Every family has songs passed down from generation to generation, and singing these shared family songs and cultural lullabies together deepens the familial bond.
  • Developing gross motor skills: Clapping, dancing, and swaying to the music isn't just fun and helps develop gross motor skills.
  • Laying the foundation for broader learning: Melodies can enhance memory, and lyrics can teach new concepts.

                Types of Songs for Babies

                A mom is playing on a mini keyboard with her baby.  Babies songs, children musical books, educational, music activities.

                There are many different types of songs out there for your baby:

                Traditional Lullabies: Evergreen and comforting, these songs have been passed down for generations. Think of "Rock-a-bye Baby" or "Hush Little Baby." The nostalgia we as parents feel when we pass them on to our babies is a beautiful bonus. 

                Sweet Songs: Gentle, soothing songs perfect for cuddle time. "You Are My Sunshine" and "Five Little Ducks" are classic choices. Find them in our free music downloads. 

                Classic Songs: You know them well and probably remember them from your childhood. Timeless treasures like "Twinkle Twinkle, Little Star" and "Old MacDonald Had a Farm." Discover them in our Patty Cake Nursery Rhymes. 

                Hit Songs: Of course, we all know the classic baby songs, but there are chart-toppers babies enjoy because of their catchy and memorable repetitive lyrics. Next time you listen to ABC by the Jackson 5, watch your baby get a wiggle on! 

                Country Songs: They often tell stories or convey deep emotions. "Blackbird," "Rainbow Connection," and "Your Song" are great picks. Why not add them to your baby's playlist?

                Interactive Sound Books: Have you ever thought of elevating your singing sessions with your baby? Enter the world of our interactive sound books! 

                When you open one of these books with your little one, you're opening a gateway to a multisensory experience. Enjoy popular songs, colorful illustrations, and fun stories! As your fingers trace the words and your voice sings the tunes, the embedded sounds come alive, amplifying the joy of the moment. Whether it's the chorus of a well-loved nursery rhyme or the sound of farm animals from a classic tale, every page turn is an adventure waiting to happen.

                We also have many songs available for free download! Did you know you can type a song name into our website's search bar to find related books? Give it a go; you might even find your new favorite playtime read! Browse through our beautiful bundles for a great start.

                Listening Skills Development through Songs

                A mom is playing guitar to her two children.  Babies songs, children musical books, educational, music activities.

                Songs, with their varied tones, rhythms, and pitches, challenge and train your baby’s ears. When they listen, they begin to discern subtle differences in sounds and melodies, laying the foundation for more advanced listening skills. This can be very useful as they pick up language cues and nuances. So, when you're humming a tune or singing a lullaby, know that you're also fine-tuning your child's auditory senses.

                Motor Skills Development with Songs

                Have you noticed how babies often wiggle or move when they hear a song? Music has this intrinsic power to prompt physical response. Simple gestures like clapping, tapping feet, or swaying to the rhythm may seem like mere reactions to a catchy beat, but they're much more than that. Each movement helps babies refine their motor skills, building muscle control and coordination.

                Using songs with actions, like "The Wheels on the Bus" or "If You're Happy and You Know It," not only adds fun to the singing sessions but also accelerates their physical development. Introducing props, like rattles or soft toys, can further enhance this experience, encouraging babies to grasp, shake, or pass, honing their hand-eye coordination.

                Brain Development with Songs:

                Music is often referred to as food for the brain, and rightly so. Every time you sing to your baby, you light up various parts of their brain. Melodies and rhythms stimulate the brain's right hemisphere, while lyrics and word structures target the left. This comprehensive engagement supports several aspects of cognition, including memory, attention, and even spatial intelligence.

                Many songs can expose babies to new words and sentence structures, which can play a crucial role in their language development. This blend of cognitive and linguistic stimulation is why music-based activities are great for brain development. Using songs in your daily routines, during bath time, mealtime, or bedtime, can pave the way for an even more robust neural network in your baby's brain.

                Next time you're singing a lullaby or dancing with your baby to a tune, remember that you're not just entertaining them: you're building their future. Embrace the power of songs and let them work their magic on your little one's development!

                Baby Songs to Sing to Your Little One

                Close up of a guitar and a musical book. Babies songs, children musical books, educational, music activities.

                Hopefully, this article has given you an idea of how to start building a personalized playlist for your baby. Still need some ideas? Here's our playlist for your baby:

                Track 1: Itsy Bitsy Spider
                A timeless classic, this song presents a soothing melody and is enriched with repetitive structures and actions that capture a baby's attention and engagement.

                Track 2: Twinkle Twinkle, Little Star
                Every night becomes more serene with this lullaby. Its tranquil and rhythmic pattern provides a calming effect, making bedtime smoother. Explore more in our book.

                Track 3: Five Little Ducks
                This song can be customized, incorporating any of baby's favorite animals. Five Little Dragons? Five Little Dancing Bears? The world is your animal oyster.

                Track 4: The Wheels on the Bus
                Beyond its catchy tune, this song serves as a vocabulary builder, accentuating sounds and actions in a playful manner. Find out more in our book.

                Track 5: Old MacDonald Had a Farm
                This one is a real crowd-pleaser in our house. Babies are going to be entertained by the lively animal sounds. As they mature, the interactive elements promise abundant laughter and fun.

                Track 6: Elmo's Song
                A modern favorite from Sesame Street, it offers personalization by substituting "Elmo" with your baby's name. Big Bird's amusing quips add a delightful layer.

                Track 7: The ABC's
                An educational staple, there are multiple renditions tailored for babies. Discover this (and a Dinosaur version!) and many other free popular songs for infants and babies here.

                Track 8: Five Little Monkeys
                A savior for those car rides, its rhythm aids in calming fussy babies while the countdown introduces them to basic numbers. Count with Nursery Rhymes and make learning fun for babies and toddlers.

                Track 9: You Are My Sunshine
                Its history as a 1940 country hit by Jimmie Davis and Charles Mitchell adds depth to this beloved lullaby, now sung worldwide in diverse tongues.

                Track 10: The Grand Old Duke of York
                An engaging song with rhythmic bouncing actions that infants adore. The lyrics involve the Duke of York marching his troops up and down the hill, baby, and you can jiggle and move along.

                Track 11: Mary Had a Little Lamb
                With its memorable melody, it's not just a song but a narration of a genuine event, adding charm to every rendition.

                Track 12: Head, Shoulders, Knees, Toes
                A perfect blend of melody and learning, this song introduces body parts through repetition and is a favorite interactive pieces for kids learning English as a second language.

                Track 13: Who's My Pretty Baby?
                This song is pure joy, radiating warmth and love, an uplifting tune every parent cherishes while serenading their little one.

                Track 14: Do You Know The Muffin Man?
                It's not just about the lyrics; the rhythm makes it dance-worthy, ensuring fun-filled, active sessions. This and other food-filled fun songs can be found here.

                Track 15: The Ants Go Marching
                A dual treat – while its melody holds attention, the lyrics provide a counting lesson. Marching around becomes both a learning and exercise activity. Have you been to the Animal Fair?

                Track 16: Do Your Ears Hang Low?
                Bound to bring giggles, this song offers multiple versions, allowing parents to choose or even mix and match for a fun-filled reading and singing time.


                Singing to your baby is a simple yet powerful way to bond, teach, and soothe. And with Cali's books, you have many interactive baby songs at your fingertips. Start with our special bundles for those ready to embark on this musical journey.

                And don't forget to check out our free music downloads!
                Previous article The Best Halloween Read Alouds for Kids
                Next article The Best Sound Books for Singing Along With Kids
                Cali's Books, founder, about us, why I love books, children's books

                Hi! I'm Cali, Founder of Cali's Books

                “I’ve loved books since childhood and wanted to transmit this enthusiasm to my children”

                I'm a mom of two young children who trained as an engineer and worked in investment banking and at Disney. A French of Caribbean origin (Martinique to be precise!), I grew up in Paris. Los Angeles is now the place I call home!

                Check out Cali's Books

                Read more from Cali's Blog