Need more evidence that music education helps kids learn?
Susan Joan Courey and her team of researchers found that kids who learned fractions by associating them with different musical notes and actions such as clapping, drumming and chanting scored fifty percent higher than their peers who received lessons without the musical accompaniment.
Fractions let you divide up a measure of music into notes of varying length. For example, one four-beat measure could contain a single whole note held for all four beats, two half notes of two beats apiece, four quarter notes of a beat each, and so on. In the Academic Music program, based on the Kodaly method of musical education, students clap, drum and chant to memorize the lengths of musical notes—then solve problems in which fractional notes must add up to a full measure of music.
For teachers who value their peace and quiet, this might not be the best news, but there are likely plenty of music teachers to whom the evidence sounds mighty sweet.