Nurturing children's innate musicality

Melissa C. Strong
The purpose of this mixed-methods experimental study is twofold. First, the researcher examined the relationship between parents' musical self-concept and intentional music-making with their young children (four years of age and under.) An intentional music-making episode (IMME) is defined as a consciously parent-initiated activity or extension of an activity, either spontaneous or planned beforehand, in which both parent and child are musically engaged. Second, the research considers the
more » ... considers the impact of active and passive parent education methods on frequency of IMME. In order to assess musical self-concept, a modified version of Asmus' Motivation for Music test was administered to subjects before treatment. Subjects were randomly distributed into one of two groups. The Active Group comprised those receiving weekly electronic newsletters about music-making with young children and who were also enrolled in a 10-week parent/child music class. The Passive Group only received the weekly e-newsletters about music-making with young children. All subjects took a researcher-constructed survey pre- and post-treatment to assess for any change in IMME. Analysis indicated that variability in IMME attributable to MSC was low (R² =.0030), and that there was no significant difference in IMME of subjects who completed Active and Passive treatments. That is, no connection was identified linking subjects' MSC and the amount of musical engagement with their children, lending evidence to the idea that music is a fundamental human drive and intrinsic to the parent/child relationship. A Repeated Measures ANCOVA revealed a positive relationship between both Active and Passive treatment conditions and IMME, as the entire sample demonstrated statistically significant improvement from pre- to posttest IMME scores (p < .001). Limited qualitative data revealed that Active Group parents finished the treatment with more confidence in their own ability to be musical with their child, as well as a strong commitment to conti [...]
doi:10.7282/t36972h8 fatcat:nyinim5vuzh4xltblocm223pau