We spend a fair amount of time in the car with the Smalls (currently aged 2 and 3.5 years) and have tried a multitude of CDs to both a) keep them entertained and b) keep them quiet (these things are not one and the same).
It involved a few painful incidents where we put a ‘kids’ CD in that we’d got from somewhere or other and skipped every track but two because they were irritating and unfamiliar (mostly irritating) or something we knew at a stupidly slow speed. It’s amazing how boring ‘The Grand Old Duke Of York’ is at half speed *yawn*.
Eventually though we have found a selection that we all like, making car trips a bit more bearable for everyone.
We have a few ‘kid safe’ music CDs of our own, which we have on when we decide it is a ‘grown-up’ trip (Meatloaf, censored Avril Lavigne & John Barrowman are but 3 examples) and the kids usually put up with them or just fall asleep to them. (Tori has started singing along with Avril – I am so proud of her…)
Quite often though we are asked for their three favourite CDs, which rather luckily for us, aren’t all that annoying.
In third place is ‘NOW That’s What I Call Disney 2012‘ (actually a 4 CD set) which I really enjoy because I’m a bit of a Disney nut and I get to indulge in a sing-along-songs extravagansa every time we put one of the discs in. (Disc 4 is a Christmas special CD, so doesn’t live in the car currently but it was good over the festive period.)
The Smalls love singing along with the songs from their favourite films (The Lion King in particular) and are growing familiar with a lot of tracks from films they haven’t seen yet. It’s light, easy listening with a big sing-along factor. There’s only about 3 tracks on the whole 4 CDs that we ever skip – even Disney can’t get it right all the time (‘Hawaiian Roller Coaster Ride’ from Lilo & Stitch, I’m lookin’ at you…)
Up at Number Two is ‘3rd and Bird: Go Camping! and other stories‘ which the kids adore. This CD contains 5 stories that are familiar from watching 3rd and Bird on TV but which are charming and well produced enough to love even if you haven’t had the joy of watching the TV show on CBeebies a million times over.
The voices are cute but not irritating, the stories are fun but not annoying (mostly) and the songs are far too catchy for their own good. Listening to this CD often results in family sing-alongs as we have all learned a lot of the words – even Artie sings along with the first and last word of every line, giggling madly as he does so. Everybody has their own favourite song and we drop quotes from this CD into everyday conversation all the time – usually resulting in a fit of giggles.
Good, clean, fun with heaps of character and lively enough to entertain even the most bored of travelling toddlers (and adults).
Tori & Arthur’s copy is extra special as it is signed just for them – a well received Christmas present from English Folkfan.
A brilliant folk CD for little ones, When I Was A Lad, combines familiar tunes such as ‘Dance To Your Daddy’ and ‘Five Little Ducks‘ with Megson’s own original tracks such as ‘All The Shops Have Fallen Down’ and a selection of other lesser-known children’s/folk songs like ‘Jenny Jenkins’ which is an American courtship song from the 1960s.
With everything from lilting lullabys through to songs that make you want to get up and bounce around country dancing style, there’s something for everyone on this CD. The kids have their favourites, we have our favourites, we all know almost all the words and there are days when we all wander round humming one tune or other because THEY ARE ALL SO CATCHY!
So, if you are looking for something to keep the littleys quiet in the car that won’t make you want to stuff your ears with cotton wool, try one of these three CDs – they work for us!