In this video, Sam (38 months) attempts to sing the ABC song. Although some of my 5 children as well as other children I know were able to sing the entire song without error by as young as 2 years old, Sam is clearly having trouble remembering it. It is of no concern to me though, since he is able to remember a good chunk of more “complicated” songs such as Taylor’s Swift’s “Someday” and Will Mumford and Sons’ “I Will Wait for You.”
Perhaps it’s is motivation to learn songs he likes versus those he doesn’t. Perhaps he just needs more practice. I tend to think he can remember songs with which he can connect (i.e., because the lyrics mean something to him). The ABC song simply doesn’t mean much to him at this point since he doesn’t spend much time thinking about the alphabet yet.
Of course, there is plenty of time for his knowledge about letters to expand and, for now, I am satisfied that he is building a large oral language vocabulary by listening to the words and stories that reveal themselves through songs on the radio. I catch him using vocabulary that he has heard in a song on the radio all the time. That said, I do want him to learn the ABC song (a true right of passage in childhood!), so I provide the necessary verbal prompts to guide him through the song and to support him in his efforts. I will continue to do so until he has the song memorized and “down pat.”