Christmas Carols for Children
Christmas can't be far away. The marketing blitz has begun, festive music fills the air waves and the shopping malls, people are organizing celebrations and there have been more than a few sightings of Santa.
There is so much that parents can do to prepare their children to celebrate the true spirit of Christmas. There is no better way for children to spread a little Yuletide cheer than singing joyful Christmas songs like "Jingle Bells" at the top of their voice.
Christmas is a time of special music. There are songs of every kind for this time of the year. For those who see the magic of the Yuletide season most clearly through the eyes of children, there are plenty of great kids carols to go around.
Singing with kids make Christmas celebrations all the more enjoyable and lively.
Here are some of my favourites. Come on, gather around and sing some Christmas songs.
I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus
For many years now, fathers have been dressing up in white beards and red suits around the Christmas time. It was Tommie Connor who wrote this little song in 1952 and he was lucky enough to have 12-yea- old Jimmy Boyd record it in a version that sold nearly 2 million copies in the first year.
Santa Claus Is Coming to Town
In 1932, J. Fred Coots and Haven Gillespie wrote the words and music of this song, but no music publisher was interested in the song because it was a kiddie tune; kiddie tunes were known to be uncommercial.
At the time, Coots was writing special material for comedian Eddie Cantor, to whom he showed the song. But even Cantor was about to turn it down for his radio show, until his wife Ida persuaded him to give it a try. This was near Thanksgiving in 1934. Of course, it was an instant hit. The radio audience went wild over the song. Since then there have been many recordings of "Santa Claus is Coming to Town." The popular version was the one recorded by Bing Cosby, The Andrews Sisters and Perry Como.
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
"Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" started life as a poem created by Robert May. He was requested to produce a poem that could be given away to children by the Santa Claus employed by department stores at Christmas! This marketing ploy was a massive success and approximately 2.5 million "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" poems were given away in the first year of its publication!
In 1949, the singer Gene Autry introduced "Rudolph" at Madision Square Garden in New York City in 1949. He recorded a musical version of "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" composed by Johnny Marks.
For most of us, "Jingle Bells" has come to be synonymous with Christmas. James Pierpont wrote it in 1857 for a Thanksgiving program for a Boston church, where he taught Sunday school.
He titled his song "The One Horse Open Sleigh" and made the rhythm so jaunty and the words so catchy that his 40 students learned it instanly. A friend of Pierpont's, admiring the song, called it "Merry Little Jingle" and helped give the tune the name by which we know it today. The children's first performance was such a success that they were asked to repeat it at Christmas time,
I have a few more favourites like "Away In a Manger", "Little Drummer Boy" and "Frosty the Snowman", but they are a bit long for young children to memorize. I have noticed that some songs, when sung by very young children during Christmas pageants or school programs, learn hand gestures and motions to go along with the chorus. I guess this is one way to get them enthusiastic about learning the song as well as help them remember the words more easily.
I must admit that most Christmas songs that I know now are songs that I have learned when I was a child. These songs just stay in your mind and in your hearts forever.
How about you? What are your favourite children's Christmas carols?
Here are some Christmas songs from YouTube. I hope you enjoy them and have a merry Christmas!