Music is both a social and cultural construct and a mighty powerful force in human lives. Since the beginning of recorded history, there is evidence of music in the everyday lives of people. Imagine the world before IPods, CD’s, record players, and radios, before recorded music and electricity. Music existed inside homes and communities where it was experienced “live” everyday as people sang as they worked, beat tribal drums as a means of communication and hushed babies to sleep with the soft lilting tunes of lullabies.
During March we are going to explore the elements of music (rhythm, tone, and form) as well as the process of making music (the acquisition of musical skills and dispositions) as they relate to mathematical concepts and opportunities.
Consider the ways in which you use music in your program. Do you sing songs to indicate a time of the day (to transition children from one activity to another), or do you sing songs that support language development (“Days of the Week”) during circle time? How frequently do you have music playing in the background during free choice time? What kinds of music do you expose the children to? Are you introducing various genres of music (jazz, classical, pop, blues) or do you stick to traditional children’s music? How frequently do you have musical instruments out and available for children to explore on their own?
As you ponder these questions, consider ways that you can expand musical opportunities in your program. Can you invest in some world music CDs, or small African drums? What will these additions add to your program?