Comenius Multilateral project
EMP integrates music activities into primary foreign language education. Music activities and games pre-dispose young learners to engage in enjoyable repetition which can enhance memory for the sounds and structures of new languages. This learning approach can reduce language barriers and help social integration. It can also nurture self-confidence and self-expression and improve intercultural understanding.
United Kingdom, Finland, Greece, Romania, Spain
Young learners, primary teachers and teacher trainers
- benefits young learners, primary teachers and teacher trainers;
- trains and supports primary teachers in their foreign language teaching skills through music and musical activities;
- supports musical learning and training;
- motivates pupils to learn languages and musical skills;
- enhances continuing professional development and initial primary teacher training in teacher training institutions;
- provides the opportunity for teachers from different countries to learn about other European cultures;
- increases the use of technology in creative ways;
- explores musical diversity in Europe;
- integrates various cultures through innovative educational materials.
From a very early age children make sounds, murmur, sing, move around and dance in a very natural way. They communicate in their “music language” which can be regarded as pre-verbal communication. As they get older, they develop their mother tongue using these pre-verbal musical elements.
Brain research in recent years has confirmed a deep and profound relationship between music and language learning. Also, research indicates that small children are pre-disposed to learning foreign languages. Moreover, listening, perceiving, imitating, and creating are basic skills in both language and music.
The goal of the Comenius Project “European Music Portfolio: A Creative Way into Languages” is to integrate musical activities in primary foreign language education. This learning approach can reduce language barriers and help social integration. It can also nurture self-confidence and self-expression and improve intercultural understanding. The project developed a European Music Portfolio to support early foreign language learning. However, a strong emphasis is placed on the fact that integrating music and foreign language learning is based on an understanding of integrated learning in all subjects.
The project created:
- Teacher’ s materials, a website and e-learning platform with ‘good practice’ examples demonstrating the uses and benefits of music in foreign language teaching.
- Pupil’ s version of the “European Music Portfolio: A Creative Way into Languages”.
- A Comenius Project Development course designed to support primary teachers in how to include musical learning in foreign language teaching.
- National and international train-the-trainer courses.