The Importance of Music and Movements Towards Early Childhood Development

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Issue :The Importance of Music and Movement and How Much it Contributes to the Early Childhood Development

This is a writing on the issue of the importance of music and how it contributes towards the early childhood development. Reading five and more articles and journals on this issue, I have to agree that music and movements contributes to the child’s total development: psychomotor, perceptual, affective, cognitive, social, cultural and aesthetic. According to Harvard psychologist Howard Gardner (1983), music intelligence is equal in importance to logical - mathematical intelligence, linguistic intelligence, spatial intelligence, bodily - kinesthetic intelligence, interpersonal intelligence, and intrapersonal intelligence. Making music is as much a basic life skill as walking or talking. Peery and Peery (1987) suggest that it is desirable for children to be exposed to, trained in, and enculturated with music for its own sake. That is, it is a birthright for all people to be able to sing in tune and march to a beat (Levinowitz and Guilmartin, 1989, 1992, 1996). To ensure a comprehensive learning experience, music must be included in early childhood. We generally think of music as something created by humans for entertainment purposes. Without knowingly, music can make us smarter. Developing a child’s musical ability may actually improve her/his ability to learn and be successful at other disciplines, such as language, math and science. The latest neurological research on brain development and its relationship to music are beginning to find that the relationship on brain development to music education reveals that training in music has a positive effect. Musical experiences are displayed in the brain as multimodal, involving auditory, visual, cognitive, effective, and motor systems. Training children in music at an early age exercises higher brain functions, including complex reasoning tasks. Wilfried Gruhn in his journal , Children need music says that every human being is born with a certain level of musical potential and most powerfully developed during early childhood. Musical learning already starts at a pre-natal stage. As soon as the hearing apparatus starts to function(around the third trimester of pregnancy), the unborn child awakens to a variety of sounds both from the womb and the external environment ( Abrams et al., 1998). Shortly following birth, neonates can identify sounds that are meaningful such as the maternal voice(DeCasper & Fifer, 1980). The research conducted by Maurice Ravel ( 1875-1937) says that parents and caretakers do not need to limit their infants to simple or stereotyped ‘ baby music”. They should select music that they deem appropriate, be it simple or complex, always attuned to their child’s reaction and to loudness level. Researches think the complexity of classical music is what primes the brain to solve spatial problems more quickly. So listening to classical music may have different effects on the brain than listening to other types of music. This doesn’t mean that other types of music aren’t good. Listening to any kind of music helps build music-related pathways in the brain. Adults should engage in meaningful and enjoyable musical activities with their infants. Wilfried in his journal supports that children explore time and space by body weigh and flow of movement, where else adults count and measure. Therefore, to him it is obvious and reasonable that children needs music as a means of rhythmic repetition and structured movements and they respond to music with great sensitivity. . Musical aptitude research says, musical potential is at the highest degree right after birth. Without any informal environmental stimulation, a child’s musical potential will decrease and finally disappear. Music education plays its particular role in children’s education. It fulfills an ethical doctrine to develop and consolidate a given potential to the best possible...
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