Music is a global experience in the brain! Music activates and engages the brain and primes it for learning. This makes it a powerful tool for teaching academic concepts.
Can you remember the skills you learned through music as a child? I can still sing my phone number in the tune my mom taught me as a little girl even though I haven't dialed it since cell phones were invented. I can also tell you what DNA stands for because I learned to sing it to the tune of "Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious" (from Mary Poppins): "Deoxy-ribo-nucleic-acid or DNA." We learn all 26 letters of the alphabet from a young age because we learn it in a song. Sure, as little children we mash a lot of letters together- I've heard one parent state recently she's pretty sure her daughter is saying "I'm a little pea" instead of L-M-N-O-P, but the comprehension and letter identification comes later. I still use the alphabet song quite frequently when I have to put something in alphabetical order (and I usually have to start at the beginning).
When teaching beginning literacy skills and letter identification, adding music, or even just a basic rhythm, enhances learning. A child will often memorize a song and sing it as you point to the words and with time will begin to connect what they are singing to the words and letters.
We love creating songs that target beginning literacy skills. Here is our song targeting the "AT" family! We hope you enjoy!
As part of our Whole Body Learning program we add visuals and often movements to almost all of our songs. If you'd like to try this activity with the children you work with head on over to our shop to purchase the printable visuals!