Increasing Rhythm Notation Reading Readiness and Ability in Grades K–5: A Literature Review of Selected Articles

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Graduate Research Poster (no oral presentation)

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An internalized sense of steady beat, also referred to as pulse, is the foundation of essential musical skills in kindergarten through fifth grade (K–5). Early childhood and elementary music educators should focus their instruction on building steady beat and rhythm skills during the optimal developmental learning period prior to age seven. This is necessary to equip students for future musical understanding and growth. A foundational sense of steady beat and rhythm is necessary for sight reading readiness of both rhythm and melodic notation, and is seen as a predictor of future success in instrumental and vocal studies beyond elementary school. The connections between various elementary music activities needed to establish a necessary understanding and feeling of rhythm are explored by various authors highlighted in this literature review poster presentation. Following an overview of the importance of early intervention, the material is organized in the format of a K–5 teaching progression from internalizing steady beat to reading rhythm notation.