Take a look at this video. What do you see?
If you answered, “a room full of children and adults ‘driving’ around with hula hoops,” you would be right. But, if you said an early childhood music and movement activity teaching spatial awareness you would also be right! Children are using their whole bodies—and the whole room—to learn a vital math skill, the skill of spatial awareness. (Although they think they are just having fun driving around!)
So what is spatial awareness and why does it matter?
Spatial awareness is the knowledge of where you are in relationship to other people and objects in your environment. To develop spatial awareness, children must be introduced to concepts such as direction, distance and location.
Studies have found a link between a well-developed sense of spatial awareness and artistic creativity, success in math, and the development of abstract thought. But it’s that music-movement-math connection that many scientists and researchers are really starting to explore.
As highlighted in this study by Florian Krause at Radford University, there is a vital connection between the body and the brain. This provides educators and parents with a powerful tool for helping children learn by giving them opportunities to make a connection from experiencing to understanding.
For over 30 years now, Kindermusik educators have been helping children jumpstart their growth and learning through the compelling combination of music and movement. The research confirms… it simply adds up!
Learn more about using music and movement to support a young child’s early math development at http://www.kindermusik.com/about/benefits-of-music-for-children/.