Music for Teaching Children- Julie Wylie MNZM

There is a huge collection of children’s music available now through channels like iTunes, YouTube and Spotify, however, some children’s music is not actually suitable for children in terms of teaching outcomes, sound quality, and complexity. Over the next few weeks, I will be looking at some great artists that make music for children, starting with Julie Wylie MNZM from Christchurch, New Zealand.

Wylie has created 13 CDs for children, and because she has such a knowledgeable background in musical theory, music therapy and child development, the songs on these CDs are perfect for children. Many of the songs have been ‘musical collaborations’ between Wylie and children she has worked with, where both Wylie and the child are active participants in the composition process. The resulting songs are beautifully written from the eyes of the child about subjects that matter to them.

Many of Wylie’s songs encourage the development of the key concepts of music such as beat, rhythm, tempo and dynamics while having beautiful melodies that children can comfortably sing and rich instrumentation to accompany the lyrics, challenging children’s listening skills as they try to decipher what they are hearing. Some songs are designed to arouse while others help to calm children, enabling us, and other adults, to tune in to, and match children’s energy levels, and take them on a musical journey in each session. They have a clear beginning, middle and end providing predictability and introducing children to musical form.

Below is one of my favourites ‘I’ve got a Teddy Bear’

Other favourite Julie Wylie songs include:

  • See the Little Clowns (Magical Musical Play)
  • We are Playing Music (Magical Musical Play)
  • Walking in a Circle (Magical Musical Play)
  • Up and Down and Around and Around (Magical Musical Play)
  • Bop it in the Rocket (Bop it in the Rocket)
  • Jump for Joy (Starting on the Right Foot)
  • Shuffle Like a Penguin (Starting on the Right Foot)
  • Little Clown Dance (Starting on the Right Foot)

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