The purpose of this study was to investigate young children’s perception of melodic construction in hope of finding clues about their broader cognitive development in nonmusical domains. Following Jeanne Bamberger’s example of musical-perceptual tasks with Montessori bells, four children aged three to six were presented with a melodic construction task and asked to create a representation of their work. Analysis of data revealed common themes with varied results of (a) eagerness or hesitancy to participate, (b) whether bells were moved or played, (c) exploration of bells, (d) internalization of rhythm, (e) cognitive readiness for melodic construction, and (f) role of visual representation. No cross-case findings could be drawn about broader cognitive development, however specific characteristics of the children and their approach to the melodic construction task are presented. Recommendations for further study center on potential clues a melodic construction task could provide about language construction in individual children.
Holland, Kimberly E.
"Learning from Students, Learning from Music:
Cognitive Development in Early Childhood Reflected through MusicalPerceptual Tasks,"
Visions of Research in Music Education: Vol. 17
, Article 6.
Available at: https://opencommons.uconn.edu/vrme/vol17/iss1/6