Teaching “Whole Music” Literacy

Posted by mariamengel on July 22, 2011

In the articleTeaching “Whole Music” Literacy by Kit Eakle, whole-language practice and theory are used to teach elementary students about the flow of the English language by rhythmically notating phrases in the regular language classroom.

This is a great article to read if you are interested in teaching your students to use music notation to help create flowing phrases and poetry.  For example, this phrase is notated two different ways to put stress on certain syllables or words:

Check it out!  Your students can learn about music, notation, fluency, literacy, the flow of language, and have fun at the same time!

Eakle writes, “…They [teachers] would begin to acquire an elementary understanding of music notation. Not only that, we would all begin to gain an understanding of the process of acquiring written language fluency by learning right along with the children. The process would demonstrate once again to us that the process of learning comes as an organic outgrowth of attempting to make sense of the world around us. In this situation music could also become a tool for teachers to experience the “illiterate” condition of being a child again and expose to us the difficulties and joys of learning along with the children. Taken with this attitude teachers could, with no real “work” be exposed to some invaluable lessons on how best to teach their students to read and write language!”


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