A Research Summary in Support of Kindermusik
by Deanne Kells, M.A.
Early childhood classroom teachers believe in the power of music to engage children. What scientifically based research supports the use of music and musical instruction to build early literacy skills?
This research summary answers that question, providing support to educators who wish to integrate music and musical instruction into their early language and literacy programs in schools. This research summary reviews high-quality experimental studies conducted in classrooms with young children receiving music education, plus relevant brain research that focuses on the impact of musical instruction on the brain.
The impact of music and musical instruction on early language and literacy development for young children is examined in the following areas:
• Reading Comprehension and Verbal Memory
• Listening Skills
• Vocabulary, Including for English Language Learners
• Phonological and Phonemic Awareness
• Writing and Print Awareness
• Impact on Children with Disabilities
• Family Involvement
Importantly, this recommendation is made not just for the value of the musical experience itself, but also because of the impact music and musical instruction can have on young children’s development of language and early literacy.