If you want to use music toys as a playthings for your child while you work, then you probably want to choose music toys with an age range in which you child falls in the middle or upper end. Sure a toddler can play the keyboard, but until they can learn a simple song, it’s just going to sound like noise, which is something you don’t need while you’re working. So try something simpler to start, like the Mozart music cube.
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Probably a CD player is not exactly the music toy you had in mind, but it (or something like it) is an essential building block for musical activities. Not only can kids listen to their favorite songs, they can listen to audio books too. They can plug in headphones to keep the noise down, and kids can move them from room to room (but not too easily). MP3 players and iPods are good too, but their small size can actually be something of a liability with kids, e.g. they get lost, kids can walk around the house (and into your office) with them.
Mozart Music Cube
Babies will just press the buttons, but toddlers and preschoolers can experiment with adding each of the five musical instruments (harp, flute, French horn, piano and violin) that it plays. We had this toy when my kids were young. While it's not exactly quiet, it pleasant to listen to, unlike many toddler toys. More: How to Work at Home With a Toddler
Musical Slices of Fun Table
The good thing about this table is that it comes apart. Not only does it make it easier to accommodate more than one “band” member, but it means parts can be kept in different part of the house. The table is divided into four wedge-shaped sections featuring: eight-note xylobells, a wooden xylophone, two drums, a three-tone chime and cymbal. Plus it comes with eight mallets--enough that you can misplace a few before it becomes a problem.
Super SaxoFlute This music toy does double duty as a building toy. Kids put it together into different configurations to make different sounds.
While younger kids can certainly play with this simple instrument, school age kids are more likely to play music with it. We have this toy, and it doesn’t get much use these days because the kids now play the piano or guitar instead. However, it was a great starter instrument. The harp lays flat and you slide a card beneath the strings to show you which strings to pluck. Very easy!
Pyle Blue Ukulele Soprano Starter Package for Beginners
What’s old is new again. My great grandmother played the uke back in the 1950s. Now, my daughter strums her old Harmony ukulele to today’s pop music. With just four strings, it’s one of the easier stringed instruments to learn. And with its increasing popularity there are a surprising number of free online ukulele classes.
This one comes with a bag, picks, strings, chrome die-cast tuners and an instructional DVD. And if you’re not musically inclined do yourself a favor and get an electric tuner (Shop Now), so it doesn’t hopelessly out of tune.