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Music Can Make Learning Fun and Engaging

by Heather Lewis of

It is intuitive to most of us that not all people learn in the same way, yet most schools teach strictly for one type of learner: auditory. Most teachers lecture and expect their students to remember what they heard. Or perhaps they pass out a worksheet and expect the children to complete it: an example of visual learning. Of course, this works for some children... but certainly not all!! What schools don't often provide for is other types of learners: tactile (by touch) learners or kinesthetic (through movement) learners. And many children learn best through a combination of learning styles.

ALL children can benefit from a multi-sensory learning approach, as it increases the odds that it will hit a preferred learning style. A multi-sensory learning approach can be critical, however, for children with learning disabilities. LD, ADD/ADHD, Autistic, Dyslexic and Dyscalculic children can benefit from multiple pathways to learning: audio, visual, tactile, and kinesthetic. Activities that provide stimulation for many different pathways in the brain do much to reinforce learning concepts.

Another powerful learning tool is music. Music and learning share an intimate relationship. Much research has been devoted to the effect of music on learning and although research is mixed in terms of there being a direct, causal relationship between music and enhanced academic performance, it is generally accepted that music is processed in the brain much the way language is processed and therefore can only enhance and complement learning in any subject. Music appears to ignite memory and best of all... it can make learning FUN and ENGAGING!

Activities and products designed with a multi-sensory approach coupled with music are powerful learning tools for ALL children, but especially for special needs children. One company that creates such products is Rock N Go LLC. They provide vibrant, hip, multi-sensory, all-inclusive and mobile products for busy families. In addition, Rock N Go products are based on national (National Council of Teachers of Mathematics) as well as state (Michigan Grade Level Content Expectations) standards. Subject matter is combined with original music which is designed to ignite memory and create a relaxed and creative environment in which children can enjoyably focus. Unique to only Rock N Go products, their original music introduces 10 popular genres (including Punk, Folk, blues, Funk, Country, Reggae, New Wave, Early 60's Surf Rock, Classical Ballad and Electro Pop) which are musically relevant and designed to engage. (Again, great for ALL children but particularly powerful for children having difficulty with focus. This includes ADD/ADHD children.) The products provide a combination of learning domains: Auditory through the music, Visual with following along in the companion workbook, and Kinesthetic/small-motor by pointing to each number as it is sung. In addition, the pointing to each number as it is sung encourages left to right tracking which is an important pre-reading skill as well as a critical skill in supporting children dealing with Dyslexia or Dyscalculia.

Their introductory set addresses skip counting which provides the groundwork for all four basic math functions (addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division). Even the youngest learners can benefit from learning skip counting to Rock N Go's unique and catchy melodies. Rock N Go LLC encourages using their music from birth, as children are able to learn nursery rhymes and simple songs from the earliest of ages... why not skip counting?! As children learn skip counting in school it is a wonderful reinforcement. It can also be used as review for upper Elementary and Middle School children. Parents who choose homeschooling can use Rock N Go as a fantastic supplement and enhancement for their home curriculums as well.

Rock N Go continues to consult teachers, students, families, as well as national and state standards in the development of future products. Additional sets will include Art (Drawing/Watercolor) coupled with classical music to engage the right side of the brain/creative mode; Addition, Subtraction, Multiplication and Division (featuring their signature 10 genres of music) and Spelling. Again, a theoretically-based, multi-sensory approach sets these products apart. for more information, consult, email, or call 517-290-9939.

Disclaimer: Internet Special Education Resources (ISER) provides this information in an effort to help parents find local special education professionals and resources. ISER does not recommend or endorse any particular special education referral source, special educational methodological bias, type of special education professional, or specific special education professional.


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