and : Relationships between pre-school musical abilities and DIFER skills

Relationships between pre-school musical abilities and DIFER skills The paper explores relationships between musical abilities and basic skills necessary for successful school-based learning. Participants of the study were 198 children from the second year (ages 4-5) and 146 from the third year (ages 5-6) of kindergarten. For the ex – ploration of musical abilities a test was developed that focuses on musical abilities comprising the components of music listening. The explicit and the implicit level of musical abilities were investigated separately. For the assessment of basic learning skills, the DIFER Program Package was used. Relationships with gender and family background were also analyzed. Results show that musical abilities are related to basic skills assessed by DIFER. In the second year of kindergarten all DIFER-skills correlate significantly with musical abilities on the explicit level, with rhythm-clapping after listening as well as with interval- and melody singing. In the third year of kindergarten, however, basic skills are related to the implicit level of musical abilities (discrimination after listening). The strongest correlation between DIFER-skills and musical abilities was found for rhythm perception. The largest explanatory strength of musical abilities – both in the second and third years – was exhibited by the composite in-dex of DIFER skills. Only few gender differences were found in both musical abilities and DIFERskills, but the relationship between musical abilities and basic learning skills are stronger for girls. Also, for children of lower-educated parents correlations between musical abilities and basic learning skills are stronger than for children whose parents have higher education. Our results suggest that targeted improvement of musical abilities during the kindergarten years might exert a positive transfer-effect on the development of basic learning skills. Music education can be an effective aid to learning, especially for children of lower-educated parents.

Keywords: musical abilities, DIFER-skills, pre-school

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Year: 2016
Issue: 1
Page: 49-69