The ultimate guide to family-friendly music

Sick of listening to the same three kids' songs everyday on the way to school? Here's some resources to help you mix up some new tunes.

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  • Baby Amaya is sleeping quietly in the car, tuning out the world around her. Suddenly, she recognizes her favorite song, “Gangam Style” by PSY, playing and immediately wakes up, flapping her arms excitedly, dancing to her favorite song.

  • Your kids might have a favorite song, and even if they don’t, you probably do. Sometimes it can be difficult finding uplifting music that’s appropriate for your whole family besides “The Wheels on the Bus,” and “Old McDonald.” On long car rides or the way to school, the right music can turn a mundane Monday into a car seat dance party. If you’re looking to expand your musical repertoire, there’s plenty of online resources for family-friendly songs that won’t drive you crazy.

  • Pandora

  • is a great internet radio program with stations like “Rockin’ Kids Radio,” “Kid’s Folk Music,” “Tween Radio,” and pretty much any other type of radio station you could dream up. It has limited commercials and lets you skip up to six songs per hour. Plus, if you have a smartphone, you can play Pandora in your car.

  • Kids’ Music That Rocks

  • is a blog completely dedicated to entertaining kids and adults. Their tagline is “music for kids that doesn't make adults want to rip their hair out. I'll go out and find the good stuff so you don't have to.” Sounds pretty nice, huh?

  • YouTube

  • has an excellent Sesame Street channel (with the classics and some new songs, too). There are also several other YouTube channels with plenty of educational and family-enriching songs. YouTube is great for playing music while you’re getting the kids ready for school, even if you don’t actually watch the videos.

  • Common Sense Media

  • has a very organized database of kids’ music. Search or browse by age, or look at “best of” lists to find appropriate new music for families. Under each artist, it lists the youngest age Common Sense thinks could be allowed to listen to specific albums. Common Sense also rates movies, websites, games, apps and other media.

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  • Several websites and blogs

  • have lists of their favorite kids songs including NPR, Mom Logic and Cool Mom Picks. Listening to songs on these lists and downloading your favorites individually could be a great way to broaden your kids’ musical horizons.

  • There’s good news for the future of kids’ music. Disney and VEVO recently announced they are teaming up to make family friendly music videos. For now, download or stream some songs from the list above and you can (finally) turn your iPod off repeat.

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Alysa Kleinman is a journalism student and an intern at Deseret Digital Media. 

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