15 Interactive Music Games for Kids

Kids dancing at a party

Rhythm is often described as our sixth sense. And it isn’t just us! Even cows have been reported to feel significantly de-stressed when listening to soothing music! The positive effects of learning a musical instrument by a developing brain have been widely appraised. In fact, it is never too early for your child to begin appreciating music.

15 Interesting Music Games and Activities for Children

Music activities for kids are a fun way of training your child’s abstract thinking capabilities. The following games require nothing more than common household items while being a whole lot of fun.

1. Hide and Seek

One of the best music activities for preschoolers to help your child’s listening skills.

What You Will Need :

  • A musical toy/music player
  • Hiding Spots

How to Play :

  • Hide a musical toy or device in any space inside your house, within hearing distance, while your child has their eyes closed.
  • Turn on the music and let your child seek it by ear.

You can increase the difficulty of this game by hiding the toy in more unlikely places as your child grows better at listening and finding. A spare mobile could also be used.

2. Passing the Happy Parcel

Everyone’s a winner in this fun game!

What You Will Need:

  • A small “special” gift in a small package
  • Lots of wrapping paper
  • Sweets, toffees, stickers, little toys or other treats

How to Play:

  • Wrap your main gift in one layer of wrapping paper.
  • Place a treat in between and wrap over it with more wrapping paper.
  • Continue this step until all the treats are wrapped in, making a big package.
  • Now, seat the children in a circle. Start passing the package while the music plays.
  • When the music stops, the child holding the package is eliminated. However, they get to remove the first layer of wrapping and pick up their treat!!
  • Continue until the final person left gets the ‘main’ prize!

A good thing to make sure of would be to have enough layers of treats in so that everyone at the party gets one!

3. Little Maestros

Did you know that Mozart began composing music by the age of five?

What You Will Need 

  • Sheets of paper
  • Pencil, crayons or sketches

How to Play 

  • Designate a symbol for a sound. For example, a circle could denote a clap and a triangle, a snap of your finger.
  • Create up to four sounds with their corresponding symbols. Sounds can include simple ones like tapping the table, stomping your foot, etc.
  • Create a sequence of symbols that your child can then “read” to make music.
  • Encourage them to create their own music, using these symbols and listen to their masterpieces.

This game may be used as an early tool to teach a child that practice makes perfect!

Kids playing instruments

4. Sounds of Music

Violin? Cello? Flute? This game could seem a little intense to start out with, but it’s one you and your kid will keep playing for the rest of your life!

What You Will Need 

  • Music player
  • Instrumental music tracks or bits (best to start out with 1 instrument and 2 instrument music)

How to Play 

  • Familiarize your child with the sounds made by different instruments.
  • Play a simple song and let your child guess what instrument is being used in the song.
  • As they get well versed in identifying individual instruments, mix it up by introducing music with 2 or even more instruments involved.

It’s never too early for your child to dip their little toes in the arts!

5. Musical Clothes

Another party spin-off of the classic music activities for preschoolers!

What You Will Need 

  • A bag full of clothing (the wackier, the better. Include things like wizard hats, capes, party props, etc.)
  • Chairs
  • Music player

How to Play 

  • Arrange the chairs in a circle for the children to sit.
  • When the music begins playing, the bag with the clothes and props is passed.
  • When the music stops, the child with the bag has to pull out one item from the bag and put it on.
  • Continue until the bag is empty. Whoever has the most items of wacky clothing on is the winner!

6. Bingo Dance-o

An active and musical version of the game seniors love.

What You Will Need 

  • Large sheets of paper
  • A number of prizes
  • Music player

How to Play 

  • Number each sheet from 1 to the number of children playing the game.
  • Wrap your prizes and number those randomly.
  • Place the sheets on the floor.
  • Like musical chairs, when the music is switched on, the children walk around the sheets of paper.
  • When the music stops, each child picks one sheet to sit or stand on.
  • Pick out any one of the wrapped prizes and state the number marked on it.
  • The child who picked the sheet with the same number wins the prize. The sheet and that child are now out of the game.
  • Repeat till all the prizes are over.

As far as musical games for preschoolers go, this is a party favourite.

7. Nursery Rhyme Time

Nursery Rhymes are used for early childhood music activities because of their simple rhythm and wording.

What You Will Need 

  • Extremely simple nursery rhymes (“Baa Baa Black Sheep” and “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” cannot go wrong)
  • Corresponding actions for the words (easily improvised or found online)

How to Play 

  • Teach the child the words of the nursery rhyme, focusing on the rhythm of reciting it.
  • When they are familiar with the words and recitation, introduce actions that correspond to the words.
  • Another element that could take the place of actions is clapping. Patting hands with a partner or the parent is a good way to build confidence.

This activity also benefits the child’s enunciation.

Kids playing

8. Musical Statues

Freeze!

What You Will Need 

  • Music player
  • Space to dance

How to Play 

  • The children dance when the music is turned on.
  • When the music pauses, everyone freezes. Children who do not freeze or stumble are eliminated.
  • Continue until one child remains as the winner.

9. Animal Dance

Help your children bring out their inner animal!

What You Will Need 

  • Square cutouts with a picture of an animal in each one
  • Music player

How to Play 

  • Let each child pick a card at random. This activity can be carried out all at once or individually.
  • When the music is played, the child dances as the animal their card shows.

Discuss their movements and how they danced. Down on all fours? Loud? Fast or slow? All these choices show how the children’s brains work.

10. The Dance Isles

A blend of musical chairs and musical statues, this one has a charm its own.

What You Will Need 

  • Sheets of newspaper
  • Music player
  • Space to dance

How to Play 

  • Spread the open newspapers on the ground, with one for each child. Space them out so that there is ample room to dance freely.
  • When the music pauses, each kid should freeze within their own “dance island” i.e. the newspaper. If they break pose or step outside, they are disqualified.
  • After each round, the newspaper is folded in half.

Encourage energetic dancing and play music to fit. This game is good exercise.

11. Tissue Ballerina

Dancing involves a lot of factors; including grace and balance!

What You Will Need 

  • A box of tissues
  • Space to dance
  • Music player

How to Play

  • Each child places a tissue on their head.
  • When the music starts, everyone starts dancing.
  • If a kid’s tissue falls to the ground, they are eliminated. If they manage to catch their tissue before it touches the floor, they can put it back on their head and continue.
  • Continue until only one remains standing.

12. The Moods of Music

The reason why music is universal is because it connects with our emotions.

What You Will Need 

  • Lots of songs expressing different emotions, such as joy, sadness, anger, etc
  • Music player

How to Play 

  • Explain to your children the objective of this game. Music can make you feel differently. Encourage them to express how they feel by dancing.
  • Put on bits of different songs and observe how they dance to it.
  • This game helps young ones identify their emotions with the help of music.

13. So You Think You Can Dance

Appreciating choreography!

What You Will Need 

  • Music player
  • Space to dance
  • To make it interesting, it would be fun to add props or even costumes to the mix

How to Play 

  • Divide the children into teams of two or more and give them their set of props.
  • Let them pick their own music and create a dance routine for it.
  • After every team performs, the best team is announced the winner!

More than just fun, this game helps kids appreciate the work that goes into a dance and also develops teamwork and communication.

Kids dancing

14. Musical Limbo

A party game for all ages!

What You Will Need 

  • A pole – it can be substituted with anything straight and long from around the house, such as curtain rods, mop handles, etc.
  • Music player

How to Play 

  • Limbo is a party game where players bend backwards at the knee to pass under a horizontal beam, without falling over or touching it.
  • Add music to the proceedings, and you have Musical Limbo! Children sway and dance their way under the beam held by two adults.
  • For each new round, lower the bar. The child who can go lowest without upsetting the beam wins!

15. Antakshari

Everybody’s favourite!

What You Will Need 

  • Two teams

How to Play 

  • The moderator picks a random letter to start off a song. The first team sings a song beginning with that letter or sound. Only two or more lines need to be sung.
  • The second team then has to begin a song using the ending syllable of the song sung before.
  • This goes on until one team fails to come up with a song. Several rounds can be played.

This game could work better with the adults involved. Allow nursery rhymes and every other song the children have learnt.

Some Useful Tips 

  • As a lot of games involve children being eliminated one by one, it is essential to keep the game moving fast, so that the children do not lose their interest.
  • Recruit children that have gotten out of the game to help you referee so that they do not feel let down.
  • Some children may be too shy to join in from the get-go. Always have some books or toys laying around for them to occupy themselves with. Allow them to get involved in the games on their own.
  • While most games involve single big winners, it helps to have several small little prizes for the participants. Appreciate them with gifts for being the ‘most creative’, the ‘funniest dancer’, ‘most lively’, etc.

Musical games are a great way to get kids moving and overcoming their shyness and inhibitions around their peers. It’s no wonder dancing is popular among people of all ages!

These music games will help in improving your child’s listening skills. He will also be able to recognise different sounds. Your child’s vocabulary will develop, too. Soon, your little kiddo will become music smart. However, if you want to make sure that his other skills develop simultaneously, get him fun activity boxes. These activity boxes will help him learn while having fun.

Also Read: 15 Innovative and Fun Brain Games for Kids