Making Music Multimodally: Young Children Learning with Music Technology

By Janet McDowall.

Published by The Learner Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

This paper is set in a context in which computer-based music technologies have transformed the contemporary music industry and in turn had significant influence on music education at several levels. The paper describes research which investigated the use of computer-based music technology for music education in junior primary teaching and learning programs. The research was conducted in South Australian junior primary schools. It was based on action research principles. The researcher collaborated with teachers in designing learning experiences, in implementing plans and in reflecting on these teaching and learning experiences. Through a multimodal approach, children used a range of computer-based music technology, with particular emphasis on applications which fostered musical creativity. Research data was collected using qualitative techniques, including interviews with teachers and children, observation, and analysis of children’s compositions. The paper shows that children participated in relatively sophisticated creative music processes that would not have been possible using conventional school music resources. While engaged in these processes, children demonstrated a range of arts-related literacies.

Keywords: Music, Technology, Early Years, Multimodal

The International Journal of Learning, Volume 16, Issue 10, pp.303-316. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 2.150MB).

Dr. Janet McDowall

Lecturer, School of Education, University of South Australia, Adelaide, South Australia, Australia

Janet McDowall is a lecturer in the School of Education at the University of South Australia where she teaches arts education courses in early childhood teacher education programs. Her main area of interest is early childhood music education. Her current research interests focus on young children’s use of computer-based music technology and she has conducted research studies in several South Australian schools.

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