A Musically Illiterate Nation, a very telling article!

May 8, 2009 at 4:27 am | Posted in Kindermusik | Leave a comment
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An Article in this months West Music email newsletter immediately caught my eye! “A Musically Illiterate Nation” by Ann C. Cay, reveals an astonishing fact, and the reasons that it has occurred. Following is an excerpt from her article and a link to read the entire article. It is very compelling.

“The majority of our nation’s eighth-grade students can’t sing in tune, play instruments or read music, according to the last National Assessment of Educational Progress. If you take them to a ball game, they can’t sing the national anthem in tune, even if they know the words. Most can’t play “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star” on an instrument. If you locked the refrigerator door with a combination that required simple rhythmic drumming to open it, most would starve to death. Let’s be serious now. What difference does it make if they can’t sing? They get all the music they want on the radio and through CDs. Are they going to be any smarter, richer, or happier if they can belt out a tune or beat out a rhythm?

Yes! Studies indicate that musical ability is as related to intelligence as is math or language. Music is an intelligence, says Dr. Howard Gardner, a cognitive psychologist at Harvard University. In fact, making music may affect the very organization of the brain which positively impacts achievement in math, reading, and other disciplines…” (read more)

So…A majority of our educational administrators were schooled in a time that did not focus on the arts as a mainstream part of educational curriculum, but instead as an extra-curricular, or elective class. When coupled with this fact, it is no wonder the experience factor is not a part of the decision making when examining the importance of music education in core curricula offerings. Music substantially impacts mathematical reasoning, language cognition, reading ability, and more. Consistent and frequent musical experiences are what is missing in the current generation of students and the test scores prove it. Parents are the responsible party in providing a musical rich education. What better way to establish musical benefits than to enroll your child in Kindermusik when they are infants, toddlers, preschoolers and early elementary age. When the impact is greatest and those windows of opportunity for learning are fully open and available. Kindermusik grows with your child and provides much to prepare them for success in school later on. Loving your child is what it’s all about!

Dancing with Mom

Dancing with Mom

Playing Resonator Bars

Playing Resonator Bars

Playing with Egg Shakers

Playing with Egg Shakers

March is Music in our Schools Month!

March 16, 2009 at 7:55 pm | Posted in Brain Development, Children's Music, Delopmental Stages, Drums, FUN, Kindermusik, Music, Music Making, Music Together, Whole Body, Whole Brain, Whole Child | Leave a comment
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March has been officially designated by MENC: The National Association for Music Education for the observance of Music In Our Schools Month® (MIOSM), the time of year when music education becomes the focus of schools across the nation. MIOSM began as a single statewide celebration in 1973, and has grown over the decades to encompass a day, then a week, and then in 1985 to become a month-long celebration of school music.

As a part of Music in our Schools Month, West Music has featured a very cool curriculum… Drumming up Character. Their featured article of the month has to do with how music and movement teach character as well.

Teaching Character Education Through Music & Movement

By Lindsay Rust, Dancing Drum

“Music teachers are familiar with the many academic and social benefits of a well-rounded music education. However, what deeper life lessons are we transmitting over the weeks and months of music class? Surely, some of the most lasting impacts of our time with our students involves deepening their character development.”  (read more)

In the Kindermusik classroom we are constantly working on these benefits as well. Many of the developmentally appropriate activities aid your child in communication skills, listening skills, language skills, social skills, as well as, physical skills, emotional skills, and of course musical skills! Come and try us out!

A Song a Day Raises Achievement and Makes for a Happy Learner!

October 2, 2008 at 1:37 am | Posted in Children's Music, Kindermusik, Music, Music Making, Music Together, Parenting, Singing | Leave a comment
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A Song a Day Raises Achievement: Partnering With Classroom Teachers

Thousands of children are failing to learn to read and perform math well enough to succeed in school and beyond (No Child Left Behind state assessments). Not only have new curriculums failed to close the gap, they are resulting in disengaged, unmotivated students and unhappy, over-stressed teachers. Additional time has been allocated to reading and math by taking it away from human needs such as eating, talking, moving and singing.

This is a serious mistake. Singing is a natural, primary source for learning that activates more areas of the brain than any other activity. Singing folksongs and playing games attracts and enlivens children, builds vocabulary and fluency, and strengthens neurological pathways necessary for linguistic and logical thinking. Children’s “play” is actually their “work”. (read more here)

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