Music and Movement Activities for 3 to 5-year-Olds

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Music and movement are brilliant when it comes to keeping your young kids entertained. Fortunately, it’s unnecessary to look for extremely complicated activities for your child. In fact, music and movement activities for 3 to 5-year-olds are so simple that you can integrate them into your daily rhythms and routines.

It is also pleasing to know that as you let them do these activities repeatedly, you can also expect better results from your toddler. Keep in mind that the preschool age (3 to 5) is the time when your child seems to have unlimited eagerness to move, learn, explore, and produce music and noise.

With that said, you have to introduce them to simple music and movement activities that are suitable for them, so you can meet such demands for learning.

What Music and Movement Activities Should Kids Try?

One of the things that endear preschoolers to music and movement is that it lets them explore and discover more types of music through movements. Through these activities, they will be able to utilize their bodies, do big movements, and play simple rhythm instruments.

This is a good thing if you want your child to learn music at such a young age. It also provides your 3 to 5-year-old child the opportunity to enjoy and experience rhythm and music in ways that are appropriate for their age.

Also, with the limited attention spans of kids, it is crucial to give them activities that can help them stay still and listen – one of which is to take part in music lessons. This particular phase also means that your toddler starts to learn through exploration and experimentation.

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    It is even highly likely for kids at such an age to learn more just by keeping their bodies involved and moving through music. To start enjoying the benefits of music and movement activities for your children, here are a few of them that will definitely entertain your 3 to 5-year-old and are truly suitable for their age.

    #1 – Freeze Dance

    One of the music and movement activities that may be familiar to you and that you can also use with your 3 to 5-year-old is the freeze dance. The whole activity involves playing music – one that every participant can dance to.

    Each time you turn off the music, the participants should freeze; otherwise, they will be out of the game. It is an incredible movement break, which encourages kids to stay up and away from other activities for a bit, so they can move to a few entertaining tunes instead.

    #2 – Shakers

    Another of the best music and movement activities for 3 to 5-year-olds is one that involves the use of shakers. As a matter of fact, shakers are considered the perfect instruments for young kids since aside from being easy to hold and grasp, they can start using them even if their coordination is still not superior.

    Once they get a hold of the shaker, your preschooler will definitely be fond of shaking through the music. They can also hold the shaker as they dance with the goal of producing more noise. You can encourage your child to start following the beat produced by their shaker and utilize it for other toddler and kids’ activities.

    #3 – Musical Chairs

    You can also make use of musical chairs considered to be among the classic movement and music activities that are suitable for kids and preschoolers. What you should do is set up the musical chairs in such a way that they form a straight line while ensuring that every other musical chair faces the other direction.

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    If you got that, you can start playing the music. Each time the music stops, the participants should take a seat. This particular activity is traditionally played with the number of chairs being one less compared to the number of players. You will also have one chair removed every time a player or participant is out or after each round.

    #4 – Ribbon Dancing

    Ribbon dancing can also be described as a great variation of movement activities that tend to engage, fascinate, and intrigue a lot of young kids. Here, you get the chance to utilize a few long strips of ribbon that you have to tie together at just a single end. You may also buy ribbon wands that are already pre-made.

    It is also possible to use party streamers. One thing to note is that while classical music is suitable for dancing with ribbons, you can still explore and experiment using other types and genres of music.

    #5 – Marching Band

    In this activity, you will get the opportunity to find and use household items as musical instruments. Among the items at home that you can use for this project are empty coffee canisters, wooden spoons, and metal tins. Here, you can play the drum at the coffee canister.

    As for the wooden spoon, you can use it as a clave plus the container full of rice is known as a maraca. Alternatively, you can buy a set of percussion instruments. Once you have the set, expect your child to enjoy the experience of shaking the maracas, forming amazing sounds using the entire set, or playing the triangle and tambourine.

    As much as possible, play the instruments along with music and a solid beat. You can let them walk and roam around your room as the music plays, too.

    #6 – Musical Painting

    Many kids are fond of painting and doing it along with some music can make this activity more enjoyable for them. The whole process is simple. Just play background music as you let your preschooler paint and listen to the music at the same time.

    Try doing this on different days with each session playing a different kind of music. By doing that, you will notice that your child is capable of coming up with various styles and forms of painting depending on the sound they hear.

    Another thing that you can do to make this a fun activity for your 3 to 5-year-old is to let them make their unique visual representation based on the music they hear. Also, motivate and encourage your child to use the colors they want as they paint based on the music’s sound and beat.

    #7 – Movement in Transitions

    This particular activity requires your preschooler to make use of attractive and adorable arctic animal movement cards. They can use these cards in the smooth and efficient transition between activities.

    To do this activity, your child will have to draw on every card. Once done, you have to ask them to mimic or follow the sound or movement of the specific animal that their card displays. The rule is to make them to it while attempting to smoothly move into another activity.

    #8 – Walking lines

    If you prefer doing outdoor music and movement activities, then give this particular line walking activity a try. Your kid will surely love it. The mechanics involve you using a sidewalk chalk to create patterned and differently-shaped lines.

    Mark the formed lines in the yard. Once done, you can call your child and ask them to walk over the lines. What this activity does is that it makes your child use proper movement and balance as a means of polishing and improving their motor skills.

    It is also a good idea to let your child do this activity with others so they can take turns while drawing lines. This will also teach the kids how to follow directions. In addition, it can bolster their ability to cooperate as well as their drawing skills.

    #9 – Scarf movement

    Do you know that you can also use a simple scarf for a manipulative game that involves music and movement? Expect your child to have a pleasant time doing this activity. Basically, it involves playing a few upbeat tracks.

    While doing so, you should encourage movement from your child by asking them to catch, throw, twirl, and juggle the scarf. This fun activity is enough to keep your child engaged for a long period.


    Music and movement activities for 3 to 5-year-olds can definitely give your child fun and memorable experiences. You can see them having an active participation in these activities considering the fact that these require them to move, hum, sing, or execute vital steps.

    The activities are also beneficial for them as far as their growth and development are concerned. The reason is that these can harness their creativity and help develop and hone their motor and language skills. Moreover, all these activities play a crucial role in their social and emotional development as the pace and rhythm of the music can positively affect their mood.