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The Child as MusicianA handbook of musical development$
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Gary McPherson

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780198530329

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198530329.001.0001

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Musical Literacy

Musical Literacy

Chapter:
(p.155) Chapter 8 Musical Literacy
Source:
The Child as Musician
Author(s):

Janet Mills

Gary E. McPherson

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198530329.003.0008

This chapter considers what people mean when they say that a child is ‘musically literate’. How can musical literacy be defined and what types of competencies might it infer? According to the discussion here, consistent with approaches to language literacy, literacy in situations related to Western classical music occurs as a result of children having developed their capacity to make music; reflect on the music in which they are engaged; express their views on music which they play, hear, or create, speak about, and listen to in order to form judgements; and read, write, comprehend, and interpret staff notation. This chapter details the fundamental aspects of learning how to use staff notation, while recognising that this is only one dimension of the literacy acquisition process, and that staff notation is only one type of music notation.

Keywords:   musical literacy, music notation, music reading, classical music, staff notation

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