Play ideas and activities Oriori Stages: Pregnancy

Why do it?

  • Baby can hear for at least the last 10 weeks of pregnancy.
  • Singing to baby helps them recognise familiar voices and the languages they speak.
  • Repeating the same lullabies will help baby become familiar with them.
  • After baby is born, those familiar lullabies will be soothing for baby because they already know them.
  • Sometimes families have a traditional lullaby that’s sung to babies — this is part of family culture. Hearing the family lullaby helps baby to feel they belong.

How to do it

  • You can sing to baby any time — do it often.
  • It’s pleasant to be sitting, maybe even rocking, as you sing.
  • Dad can be part of this — baby will get to know his voice too.
  • Mum can stroke her puku as she sings — this is relaxing for mum and baby.

Try these well-known lullabies:

    • Hush little baby
    • Rock-a-bye baby
    • Moe moe pēpi (Te Kākano, page 9)
    • Hine e hine (Te Kākano, page 21)
    • Aue māmā (Te Kākano, page 33).

 Using more reo Māori

Kukune Unborn child
Te whare tangata Womb
Whakarongo Listen
Reo Voice
Takarure Say again and again
Waiata Sing
Rongo Hear
Whakapīoioi To rock to and fro
Awhi Embrace, cuddle
E noho Sit down
Oriori Lullaby
Pārohetanga Relaxation