The benefits of music classes for preschoolers: the ABC of do re mi
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It appears that the Mozart Effect may have finally been laid to rest. In 2010, a comprehensive review of the 40 or so papers published since the initial paper by Rauscher et al (Rauscher, Shaw, & Ky, 1993) has concluded there is little evidence for the effect and that this effect is similar for many different types of music (Pietschnig, Voracek, & Formann, 2010). This is great news for music educators. There is a great need to define music research in terms of the unique contribution music makes, rather than how music helps other subjects. We need to research and discuss the benefits of music education in terms of how music education stands alone: the benefits of learning music brings that nothing else provides (Woods, 1991). Continuing to discuss music education in terms of how it helps mathematics, literacy, and other subjects diminishes the contribution studying music makes as a subject in its own right and places music education in a very precarious position (Hetland & Winner, 2004). While we continue to define the benefits of music education wholly in terms of how the study of music benefits other subjects, and students continue to perform badly at these subjects - and the report on NAPLAN testing suggest that Queensland's students are among the lowest scoring in the country, where does this leave music? (Australian Curriculum, 2010). In a very precarious position (Woods, 1991). Consider this, even if our students were to rise to the top of Australia's ranks, the contribution made from studying music would most likely not be examined or given its due credit. There is a real need to identify the strengths of music education that are unique to music education to justify the inclusion of music in the curriculum.
Bulletin of the International Kodaly Society
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Neurosciences not elsewhere classified
Biological Psychology (Neuropsychology, Psychopharmacology, Physiological Psychology)
Curriculum and Pedagogy Theory and Development