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The art of teaching children the arts: Music, dance, and poetry with children 2-8 years old

Journal article
Authors Ingrid Pramling Samuelsson
Maj Asplund Carlsson
Bengt Olsson
Niklas Pramling
Cecilia Wallerstedt
Published in International Journal of Early Years Education
Volume 17
Issue 2
Pages 119-135
ISSN 0966-9760
Publication year 2009
Published at The Linnaeus Centre for Research on Learning, Interaction, and Mediated Communication in Contemporary Society (LinCS)
Department of Languages and Literatures
Department of Education, Childhood Studies Unit
Academy of Music and Drama
Department of Education, Learning and Teaching Unit
Pages 119-135
Language en
Keywords Children, music, dance, poetry, learning
Subject categories Pedagogy, Children, Musicology, Aesthetics


In this article, the theoretical framework of developmental pedagogy is presented as a tool in studying and developing children’s knowing within the arts. The domains of art focused on are music, poetry and dance/aesthetic movement. Through empirical examples from a large-scale research project, we illustrate the tools of developmental pedagogy and show how this perspective contributes to our understanding of children’s learning of music, dance and poetry. More specifically, we will analyse: (a) the important role of the teacher in children’s learning within the arts; (b) the importance of conversing when learning the arts; (c) what constitutes the knowledge, what we refer to as ‘learning objects’, to be appropriated within the three domains of art focused on; and (d) how to conceive of progression in children’s knowing within the arts.

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