Jingle Bells has been voted the best Christmas song – by babies, a study has found.

Scientists compiled the results by studying the reactions of youngsters when listening to different Christmas songs and using a ‘jump-o-meter’ to see which ones they were most likely to bounce along to.

The combination of the sleigh bells and it’s catchy melody made ‘Jingle Bells’ 47% more ‘bounceable’ than ‘Deck the Halls’, which came tenth.

‘Santa Claus is Coming to Town’ came second followed by ‘We Wish You a Merry Christmas’, ‘Silent Night’ and ‘Ding Dong Merrily on High’.

Ella’s Kitchen, in partnership with Save the Children, has commissioned a study into the favourite Christmas tunes, working with a team of experts from the Thrill Laboratory.

Brendan Walker, from Thrill Laboratory, said: “When babies become excited in response to a song, their bodies and minds get ready for action: their hearts beat faster, their eyes open wide, and their breathing quickens.

“One behavioural effect of excitement and sensorial engagement that parents can see is when little ones bounce, which our jump-o-meter closely monitored.

“An increase in bouncing, coupled with positive facial expressions, showed just how excited our babies were when they heard different Christmas tunes.”

‘Jingle Bell Rock’ was the sixth most popular Christmas tune, followed by ‘Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer’ and ‘Frosty the Snowman’.

‘Away in a Manger’ and ‘Deck the Halls’ completed the top ten.

The baby jump-o-meter has been created to support Save the Children and celebrate Ella’s partnership with the charity, where 30p from the sale of each jingle belly Christmas Dinner pouch will be donated to Save the Children’s award–winning Families and Schools Together programme (FAST).

Mark Cuddigan, Head of Ella’s Kitchen, comments: “We’re really excited to have partnered with Save the Children on our new Christmas campaign. We wanted to make an occasion of little ones who are experiencing the joys of Christmas songs for the very first time!”.

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The top 10 Christmas tunes as voted by the littles ones are:


  1. Jingle Bells
  2. Santa Claus is Coming to Town
  3. We Wish You a Merry Christmas
  4. Silent Night
  5. Ding Dong Merrily on High
  6. Jingle Bell Rock
  7. Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer
  8. Frosty The Snowman
  9. Away in a Manger
  10. Deck the Halls

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