Differences in Mathematics Scores Between Students Who Receive Traditional Montessori Instruction and Students Who Receive Music Enriched Montessori Instruction
- Author(s): Harris, Maureen Ann
- et al.
Published Web Locationhttps://doi.org/10.21977/D93110059
While a growing body of research reveals the beneficial effects of music on education performance the value of music in educating the young child is not being recognized. If research of students in the school system indicates that learning through the arts can benefit the ‘whole’ child, that math achievement scores are significantly higher for those students studying music, and if Montessori education produces a more academically accomplished child, then what is the potential for the child when Montessori includes an enriched music curriculum? The decision to support music cannot be made without knowing music’s effect on academic achievement and its contribution to a student’s education. This study was an experimental design using a two-group post-test comparison. A sample of 200 Montessori students aged 3-5 years-old were selected and randomly placed in one of two groups. The experimental treatment was an “in-house” music enriched Montessori program and children participated in 3 half-hour sessions weekly, for 6 months. The instrument used to measure mathematical achievement was the Test of Early Mathematics Ability-3 (Barody & Ginsburg) to determine if the independent variable, music instruction had any effect on students’ math test scores. The results showed that subjects who received music enriched Montessori instruction had significantly higher math scores and when compared by age group, 3 year-old students had higher scores than either the 4 year-old or 5 year-old children. This study shows that an arts-rich curriculum has a significant positive effect on young students academic achievement.
This comprehensive research presents developmentally appropriate early education curriculum for children from 2 through 6 years old and addresses some of the most compelling questions about early experience, such as how important music is to early brain development. Contemporary theories and practices of music education including strategies for developing pitch, vocal, rhythmic, instrumental, listening, movement and creative responses in children are presented. It explores the interrelationship of music and academic development in children, and demonstrates how music can enhance and accelerate the learning process. This study combines the best of research and practical knowledge to give teachers the necessary tools to educate tomorrow's musicians. It is essential reading for all students and teachers of young children.