Slow Down Songs for Free to Help Kids with Special Needs


Have you tried using mainstream children’s music with kids with special needs? The music is usually too fast paced for the child to access and enjoy. Slowing down recordings is an option to make the music more accessible.


Here’s how you can do it for free!

Music recordings can be slowed down by using a program called “Audacity.” This free program can be downloaded from

Following are the instructions on how to slow down a song’s tempo.

  1. The first step is to rip the song from the CD onto your computer using software such as ITunes, alternately if you have an mp3 you can go straight ahead with step 2.
  2. Open up the Audacity program.
  3. Click on “File-Import-Audio” and select the song file.
  4. Once the file is open, select “Effect-Change Tempo.”
  5. In the “percentage change” box, type a number with a negative sign before it since we want to slow down the music. I would recommend starting with -15.
  6. Click the “Ok” button.
  7. Press the green play button on the top menu bar to hear the song at its reduced tempo.
  8. If you wish to change the tempo repeat steps 5, 6 and 7.
  9. Once you have the song at an appropriate tempo, to transfer this file out of Audacity, click, “File-Export”
  10. In the dialog box that opens select the location for the file to be saved to, add a file name and in the “Save As” type box, select the “mp3 Files” option.
  11. The file can now be opened on programs such as iTunes

Please Note:

The above instructions and link were correct at the time of writing this blog , however this may change as new versions of Audacity are released. However, the general principles would still be correct.

Published by ahjaystelino

Ahjay Stelino is a New Zealand professional composer, music producer and registered music therapist.

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