Christmas music for kids: 32 of the best carols and festive songs to sing along to

a close up of a child with headphones listenign to Christmas music for kids

We've rounded up some of the best Christmas music for kids with fun facts and handy Youtube videos that will have you singing along in no time.

'Tis the season of Christmas markets and festive food, and there's nothing like getting into the spirit of Christmas than a festive sing-song. Be it a modern favourite, a hearty carol or a pop-based classic that features Christmas tree traditions and Santa's reindeers. Everyone's got their preferred one to belt out in the lead up to the December holiday.

Teaching kids the words is a lovely way to get them excited for Father Christmas's impending visit and is sure to prep them well for any school Nativity role. We've selected 32 of our favourites - including the 12 days of Christmas - with kid-friendly cartoon videos that can help them learn the lyrics alone or with help on hand.

And if you're a fan of festive music yourself, you might also be interested to know how much money Mariah Carey makes every Christmas too. 

31 of the best Christmas music for kids

1. Jingle Bells

It doesn't get more festive than good old 'Jingle Bells'. This holiday song has magical lyrics featuring Santa's sleigh and reindeers in a snowy winter wonderland. Perfect to ignite many a child's imagination come Christmas. Get the full lyrics here.

Did you Know? Jingle Bells was originally known as 'The One Horse Open Sleigh' when it was first released in Autumn 1957. It wasn't until the 1860s and 70s that the song became associated with Christmas.

2. Away in a Manger

A classic Christmas carol that teaches the kids the story of the Nativity and baby Jesus. A good one to swat up on ahead of the yearly school production. Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? The most commonly used melodies for this carol date back to the late 1800s. These are William J Kirkpatrick's 'Cradle Song' (1895) and James R Murray's 'Mueller' (1887).

3. Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer

Santa's most famous reindeer had to have a song dedicated to him and his shiny red nose! The lyrics also contain an important lesson and lovely story to celebrate rather than tease everyone's individual qualities. Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? In 1949, American singer Gene Autry released his version which went on to sell 2.5 million copies and reach the Number One spot for Christmas that year.

4. Santa Claus is Comin' to Town

"He knows if you've been bad or good. So be good for goodness sake" - Kids will be fizzing with excitement in the knowledge that Father Christmas will be paying a visit soon. And this particular lyric is one that parents should teach in the hopes of a tantrum free Christmas! Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? This Christmas song has been covered by over 200 artists including Bing Cosby, The Jackson 5, Mariah Carey, Michael Buble, Frank Sinatra and The Temptations.

5. Deck the Halls

Little ones will love singing the "fa la la la la" parts in this traditional carol. It's perfect Christmas music for kids, as the lyrics are easy to learn and the melody quick to pick up. Belt it out whilst putting your decorations up. Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? The melody of Deck the Halls has Welsh origin dating back to the sixteenth century.

6. Rocking Around The Christmas Tree

Some festive rock that promises a Christmas bop! Rockin' around the Christmas Tree is a fun song for kids to sing out loud. And  it's centred around one of the biggest staples of the event - a festive fir of course. Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? Brenda Lee who recorded the original was only 13 years old when she sang and recorded it in 1958. It's since sold over 25 million copies worldwide.

7. 12 Days of Christmas

It's an age-old tradition teaching kids the 12 gifts of Christmas - from the well known 'Three French Hens' to the sometimes forgetten 'Nine Ladies Dancing'. You could help them learn the lyrics and then quiz them on the answers in a fun car game for kids on the way to the grandparents on Christmas Day. Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? The 12 days of Christmas - known as Twelvetide - is part of Christianity history. Rumour has it that worshippers used it when Christians were being punished for their religion as a way to discreetly pass on the message of Christianity.

8. Frosty the Snowman

Bar Rudolph, Frosty is arguably the most famous Christmas character of all time. So it's only right that he makes it into our Christmas music for kids round-up! The song also serves as a handy checklist for all the things kids need when making their own Snowman... corncob pipe and a button nose? Check! Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? Gene Audry of Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer fame, released this original song a year after his success with the Rudolph hit.

9. Silent Night

Another Nativity favourite - this gorgeous carol sang in a child's sweet voice is enough to set any parent off come. And of course the quiet melody also makes it a great Christmas lullaby - to help little ones nod off on Christmas Eve. Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? Silent Night or 'Stille Nacht' was first performed on Christmas Eve in 1818 at St Nicholas parish church in Oberndorf, Austria.

10. We Wish You A Merry Christmas (And A Happy New Year)

This is a nice easy one for little ones to pick up. And we've no doubt they'll enjoy extending the 'shh' sound of wish in the lyrics. Before asking to sample some famous figgy pudding! Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? This song celebrates the tradition of carolling - with choirs singing to wealthy members of the community in exchange for Christmas treats.

11. When Santa Got Stuck Up The Chimney

Young ones will find this classic Christmas song hilarious - and love the sneezing part right at the end. Maybe a reminder to leave Father Christmas just the one mince pie on Christmas Eve perhaps? Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? Jazz icon Ella Fitzgerald once lent her vocals to a version of this song in 1950.

12. Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow

Snow is something that gets kids VERY excited - and one thing that even us adults secretly hope for in December. Teach them the words made famous by Frank Sinatra and do your own version of a 'snow dance' together for a White Christmas. Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? Let It Snow was written in July 1945 during a heat wave in Hollywood, California by lyricist Sammy Cahn and composer Jule Styne. The two were clearly hto and bothered and dreaming of a cooler Christmas.

13. Ding Dong Merrily On High

That big breath before the "Gloooooooooooooooooooooria" will have both kids and adults in stitches. And it's for this reason that this very merry carol made our Christmas music for kids edit. Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? English composer George Woodward who wrote the words in 1924 had a keen interest in church bell ringing. Can you tell?

14. All I Want For Christmas Is You

A song that needs no introduction. Share Mariah's massive hit with your kid - but only if you can bear to hear them singing it on repeat for the WHOLE of December. Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? Released in 1994, this is Mariah Carey's biggest international success. It topped the charts in 26 countries including Australia, Canada, France and Germany. But missed out on the UK Number one spot - beaten by East 17's Stay Another Day. But this year, the 'Queen of Christmas' is finally in with a chance of securing the Christmas Number 1.

15. Chipmunk Christmas song

"Time for toys and time for cheer," sing Alvin and the Chipmunks in their cheecky dulcet tones. Introduce kids today to the cartoon phenomenom of many moons ago, by teaching them this festive tune. Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? The Chipmunk Song spent four weeks at Number 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart between December 1958 and January 1959.

16. We Three Kings

We Three Kings tells the story of Jesus’ birth, death, and resurrection through it's lyrics and charming melody. And it's known for appearing in the odd child Nativity or two. Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? This popular carol was written in 1857 by American clergyman John Henry Hopkins Jr.

17. Feliz Navidad

Singer-songwriter José Feliciano released this popular Christmas tune in 1970. And it's a great song for bilingual children to enjoy or kids keen to learn a few new Spanish phrases. "Feliz Navidad, próspero año y felicidad" roughly translates to "Merry Christmas, a prosperous year and happiness". Get the full lyrics here.

Did Yiu Know? The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) unveiled this as one fo the top 25 most played Christmas songs around the world.

18. O Come All Ye Faithful

An example of a Christian carol at it's finest. This one celebrates the beginning of Christmas and the birth of Jesus - a great one to learn whilst sharing with them the Nativity story. Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? There's actually eight verses of this Christmas carol, but the four-verse version is most popular. It's been translated into many languages over the last two centuries.

19. Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas

Hope, cheer and the stunning vocals of Judy Garland. Meet me in St. Louis boasts one of the best Christmas songs of all time. A great reminder that Christmas is not always perfect and cheerful for some. Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? When Frank Sinatra re-recorded the song in 1957 he changed the line "Until then we'll have to muddle through somehow" to "Hang a shining star upon the highest bough". This was deemed cheerier and appropriate for his album A Jolly Christmas.

20. Hark! The Herald Angels Sing

This stunning festive carol is based on Luke 2:14 from the Holy Bible and tells of an angelic chorus singing their praises to God. A beautiful melodic tune, teach it to your child this Christmas. Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? Hark! The Herald Angels Sing is one of the oldest English Christmas carol - dating back to 1739.

21. I Wish It Could Be Christmas Every Day

We know a few kids that really do wish it could be Christmas every day. Making this the perfest song to teach them this festive season. Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know?  Wizzard missed out on the Christmas number 1 spot in 1973 by Slade's Merry Xmas Everybody.

22. Have A Holly Jolly Christmas

Friendship, love and a sprig of mistletoe, there's plenty of Christmas staples in this cheery Christmas tune. Kids will love the beat of this one which they won't be able to not bop to. Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? It was Amercian folk singer Burl Ives who originally had a hit with this in October 1965.

23. Good King Wenceslas

A message to give and help those less fortunate - Good King Wenceslas is a Christmas song with a moral that all children should be taught. Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? This isn't technically a Christmas song. Good King Wenceslas was a Catholic who was assassinated by his brother Boleslaw and his supporters. The song tells the story of him giving to the poor during St. Stephen's feast day (celebrated on 26th December) - which is why it's become a Christmas carol.

24. It's Beginning to Look A Lot Like Christmas

Christmas trees, candy canes, holly and ringing bells. This old hit celebrates all the signs in Christmas that many little ones know and look forward to. Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? Though sung by many artists over the years, the biggest success was by Perry Como and The Fontane Sisters who released their version in September 1951.

25. While Shepherds Watched Their Flock By Night

A pivotal part in the Nativity - While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks By Night details the Lord's angels coming down and sharing the news of Jesus's birth with the sheep farmers. Help them learn the words in time for this year's school production. Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? This was the only hymn that was approved to be sung by the Church of England in the 18th Century. They felt that other carols at the time were too folk music focused and not religious.

26. Walking in a Winter Wonderland

Another song that has kids hoping for a white, snowy Christmas. We love the seasonal feel of this classic - which is why we could't leave it out of our Christmas music for kids round-up. Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? Winter Wonderland was first written in 1934 and has been sung by over 200 different artists since then.

27. Mary Boy's Child

Another carol that celebrates the true story of Christmas - Mary and her new born son. But it's okay if you prefer Boney M's pop-ier version (we won't tell!) Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? This song became the first UK number one that played for over four minutes in 1957, when Harry Belafonte released his version worldwide. It's since sold over 1.9 million copies alone in Great Britain.

28. Sleigh Ride

Many children will love this fast, up-tempo hit - made famous by The Ronettes. All together now 'ding-a-ling-a-ling-a-ling-a ding-dong-ding." Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? An orchestral version of Sleigh Ride was first recorded in 1949 by Arthur Fiedler and the Boston Pops Orchestra. It was another 14 years before The Ronettes would release their version to the world (1963).

29. I'm a Little Snowman

We love this festive kid-friendly song - that goes along to the tune of 'I'm a little teapot'. It's easy to learn with simple words to describe a snowman (eyes, hat, scarf, buttons, and nose). And is done at a pace that younger children can follow and sing along to .Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? The original 'I'm a little teapot' song written by George Harold Sanders and Clarence Z. Kelley in 1939.

30. Here Comes Santa Claus

A nice hearty Christmas tune that kids can belt out in excitement. Here Comes Santa Claus celebrates the impending arrival of a rather famous character. Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? This is another hit performed by Gene Autry (of Rudolph and Frosty fame). In his recording he actually pronounces Santa Claus as "Santy Claus".

31. Mistletoe

This Christmas pop hit by a young Justin Bieber has proven to be a rather catchy one with fans over the years. Teach little ones the words and the tradition of Mistletoe at the same time. Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? The tradition of hanging mistletoe was originally thought to bring good luck and ward off evil spirits. In Norse mythology, mistletoe symbolised love, which is where the modern custom of kissing under the mistletoe comes from.

32. Santa Shark

And last but not leats on our Christmas music for kids list. WARNING - like the original Baby Shark song, this Christmas version has a habit of getting stuck in people's heads. In addition to Santa shark is Reindeer shark, Elf shark... and you get the picture. Get the full lyrics here.

Did You Know? Baby Shark is one of Youtube's most watched videos of all time - drawing in over 2 billions views online.

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Emily Stedman
Features Editor

Emily Stedman is the former Features Editor for GoodTo covering all things TV, entertainment, royal, lifestyle, health and wellbeing. Boasting an encyclopaedic knowledge on all things TV, celebrity and royals, career highlights include working at HELLO! Magazine and as a royal researcher to Diana biographer Andrew Morton on his book Meghan: A Hollywood Princess. In her spare time, Emily can be found eating her way around London, swimming at her local Lido or curled up on the sofa binging the next best Netflix show.