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Three ways to super-charge holiday singing with your kids

Singers take part in the Music Center's annual holiday sing-along in downtown Los Angeles.
Singers take part in the Music Center's annual holiday sing-along in downtown Los Angeles.
Alex Pitt/For The Music Center

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If you find yourself sprinting for the nearest exit every time you hear Bing Cosby's "White Christmas," we've got some news that might stop you in mid-stride: holiday songs can be good for your kids. 

Whether participating in organized sing-alongs and or spontaneous warbling to piped-in music in the mall, young children register real gains from singing, experts say. 

Here are three suggestions from Susan Canizares, the chief academic officer at child care provider Learning Care Group, on how to help your young kids learn as they sing along. She says these principals work best for kids age 0 to five years:

Wondering where to take your kids singing? You can catch several upcoming sing-alongs in Southern California:

• The Music Center Holiday Sing-Along
Friday, Dec. 19, 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.
The Music Center in downtown Los Angeles
Free tickets are distributed starting at 6 pm.

• LA Phil's Holiday Sing-Along with special guest Drew Carey
Dec. 20, various times
Walt Disney Concert Hall, downtown Los Angeles
Tickets start at $37

• Holiday Singalong and Ugly Sweater Contest
Friday, Dec. 19, 6 p.m.
Bank of Books, an independent-family owned bookstore in Malibu

Can't remember the lyrics to songs? The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences offers an online kids resource for holiday songs that lists lyrics to classics like "The Christmas Song" and "Auld Lang Syne." 

To learn more about music and the brain, join us at a KPCC Crawford Family Forum on Jan. 25 for a discussion and performance by the Boyle Heights Community Youth Orchestra. The event is free and reservations can be made here.