Music and Learning

Yesterday while I was driving around doing errands I was listening to Day 6 on CBC radio.  This episode the host was interviewing the music therapist who worked with congresswoman Gabrielle Gifford to help her to regain her speech. It was a fascinating discussion about how the therapist Maegan Morrow, used simple familiar tunes to begin re-engaging Gifford’s right brain in locating vocabulary. To learn more please visit the site linked to this post.

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What struck me, however, was the similarity to techniques used in primary classrooms daily to engage students in oral literacy. I remember when I first began teaching in a grade one classroom how I would “sing” attendance with my students. I did this to capture their attention, keep them focused and to assess their musical ear and sense of rhythm.  Not knowing anything about brain science, little did I know I was helping them to embed language in different areas of their brain. I’m glad to know that what I felt was the right think for early learners, actually was 🙂