“Just A Spoonful of Sugar Helps The Medicine Go Down In A Most Delightful Way”
Music can help increase learning for children, particularly those with autism and other learning musicdifficulties.
Music activities provide much needed sensory input through mind and body stimulation at the same time to engage learning. A well-designed music programme will stimulate different parts of the brain at once to process rhythm, emotion and movement, while encouraging creativity, experimentation and exploration in a most delightful way!
Music helps the whole child engage both physically and mentally especially in the early stages of reading and decoding text. Because tempo, pitch and beat are crucial elements in learning to read, children who have been exposed to music demonstrate a higher ability to anticipate words, rhythms and concepts when learning to speak, write and read.
Exposure to singing, dancing and playing (a variety of instruments) help to develop and sharpen proper voice control, motor planning and fine-tune fine and gross motor skills.
Children who experience learning difficulties, if encouraged to participate in music lessons, are more easily able to practice and assimilate new concepts in grammar and punctuation .
This is key in allowing the child to engage faster and scaffold their learning more effectively.
Children with learning difficulties, in particular on the Autism spectrum, who are part of a consistent music program also demonstrate increased focus, more voluntary attention, better memory, increased social interaction and greater ownership and enjoyment of their literacy journey.
When a child with learning difficulties experiences success in music, this leads to increased self-esteem, effective fine and gross motor control, a greater awareness of the world around them and better social and communication skills.
Music can also enhance discipline and move a child towards a more positive, affirming attitude while giving them a sense of pride in their work.
Music is a means that enables a child with learning difficulties to show their emotions in a creative, non-verbal way they might not otherwise be able to express. Where once there was frustration anxiety, unhappiness, struggle and resulting behavioural difficulties, music is the spoonful of medicine that provides healing for a child experiencing learning difficulties and gives them a sense of achievement and purpose!