How Do Babies Develop a Sense of Beat? | Musical Play

Forget the "I'm not musical" attitude – we are ALL musical, we just need to learn how to build and nurture that musiciality early. Here's how.



Music is a profoundly human experience. It is something that develops in all of us – but needs nurturing to really stick around.


So, many of us claim “I’m not musical” or “I can’t keep a beat” and for many there’s a very real sadness around that.

This can be learned – even later in life. We’ve seen it time and time again.


So, how is it nurtured and built early on?


Babies are surrounded by sound in the womb. The heart and digestive system provide plenty of rhythmic sounds, and babies can hear from very early on.


They are already sensitive to rhythm and beat from birth – they are even able to detect changes in expected beat at a couple of days old.


The feel the pulse of our walking – first in the womb, then in our arms.


Our speech has pattern. They are exposed to the beat present in communication – the waiting, giving, taking, pausing and nuance that humans learn instinctively to follow.


Building on these foundations, we are not teaching beat and music to children – rather, nurturing what is already there and ready to be built upon.

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