Babies soothed by tunes from N.S. musicians
Read To Me promotes reading, music
Starting this July, every baby born in Nova Scotia will receive a new collection of music and rhymes, courtesy of the Read to Me Program.
Read to Me is a non-profit early reading promotion program that gives a free bag of books and reading information at the hospital bedside to babies born in Nova Scotia. In addition to baby books, the program also gives parents music and rhymes to enjoy with their baby.
“Music and song have so many benefits to young children,” said Read to Me director Carol McDougall. “Early experiences with music, song and rhyme have a significant impact on a baby’s literacy development by encouraging active listening and drawing a baby’s attention to patterns in language. And it’s so much fun for babies and parents to sing, dance and chant rhymes together.”
The new music collection was funded by a grant from the CIBC Children’s Foundation. Musicians were supportive of the project, some donating original songs, while others recorded vocal tracks to nursery rhymes and lullabies. “When both of my girls were born, the Read to Me program was an amazing addition to an already amazing team of health care providers and services,” says contributing mu- sician Ian Sherwood. “We found the bag really helped to round out all the education for going home with a newborn.
"Getting to be a part of Read to Me’s new music collection was something I was honoured to be asked to do.”
Sherwood, along with artists like David Myles, Rose Cousins and Jill Barber and many others, generously contributed time and talent to the creation of the new collection, titled Hickory Dickory Dock. Bed music for the nursery rhymes was composed by Asif Illyas of the SHIRE, while musicians recorded their vocal tracks at New Scotland Yard Studios in Dartmouth.
“So many families tell us how much they loved our first CD, that their baby can’t go for a drive, or go to sleep without listening to our music, and we know that this new collection will become a new family favorite,” says McDougall. “It’s so wonderful to hear how important the music and rhymes have become to families in Nova Scotia. We know that the new collection will be equally loved by families. We are so grateful to all of the musicians for contributing their time and talent to supporting the language and learning of babies in Nova Scotia.”
Starting in July, each Read to Me bag contains a download code that parents can use to redeem the new music and rhymes online.