How Children Learn Music, Kindergarten–Grade 4

Performing, creating, and responding to music are the fundamental music processes in which humans engage.

Students, particularly in kindergarten to grade four, learn by doing. Singing, playing instruments, moving to music, and creating music enable them to acquire musical skills and knowledge that can be developed in no other way. Learning to read and notate music gives them a skill with which to explore music independently and with others.

Listening to, analyzing, and evaluating music are important building blocks of musical learning. Further, to participate fully in a diverse, global society, students must understand their own historical and cultural heritages and those of others within their communities and beyond.

Because music is a basic expression of human culture, every student should have access to a balanced, comprehensive, and sequential program of study in music.

>Source: National Standards for Arts Education, published by Music Educators National Conference (MENC). Copyright © 1994 by MENC. Used by permission. The complete National Arts Standards and additional materials relating to the standards are available from MENC, The National Association for Music Education, 1806 Robert Fulton Drive, Reston, VA 20191, telephone: 800-336-3768.