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Music, movement and drama in early childhood education: an assesment of the moi university case

Author: 
Isaac Waswa Shitubi and Mellitus N. Wanyama
Subject Area: 
Social Sciences and Humanities
Abstract: 

According to Hannaford (1995), learners tend to remember more when they are actively involved in the learning process than when they are passively involved. According to this model, also known as: Dale’s Cone of Learning (http://www.soundpiper.com/mln/elements.htm), we tend to remember 10% of what we read, 20% of what we hear, 50% of what we hear and see, 70% of what is discussed, 80% of what is experienced and 95% of what we say and do . Therefore, we tend to learn more when we see, hear and participate or do real things in the learning process. It is on this basis that this paper advocates for the use of music, movement and drama in early childhood education – a learner centred method that encourages total participation through seeing, hearing and doing. In this regard, Hannaford observes that music gets the whole child involved in the process of learning. In Kenya, Early childhood education degree programs are offered by various universities. In particular, Moi University, School of Education, offers Bachelor of Education in Early Childhood and Primary Education. In the four year program course, there are only four courses which focus on the use of music, movement and drama in early childhood education. The first course, which is done in second year of study, introduces students to the very basic fundamentals of music, drama/play, movement/dance with reference to their efficacy in early childhood pedagogy. Thereafter, two courses follow in third year: one discusses methodology of using music, movement and drama in early childhood education and the other focuses on creation, choice and use of music, movement and drama materials in early childhood education. The last course zeros in on elementary techniques of music composition, and script writing for dance and drama with particular reference to early childhood education. It is last course in the series and is offered in fourth year. It builds on the earlier third year course by introducing relatively advanced techniques in music composition and script writing, and interpretation in drama/play and dance/movement in early childhood education. This paper discusses challenges and shortcomings in the programme offered at Moi University and thereafter it suggests the way forward.

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