According to recent studies, making music can improve both pro-social behaviour (voluntary behaviour intended to benefit another) and the problem-solving skills of young children.
The Drumbeat Program, conducted by YMCA Child and Parent Centre, in South Hedland, has been doing just that! Over the past 10 weeks, the program was successfully delivered to 18 year one and year two students at Cassia Primary School.
YMCA WA Family Support Coordinator Norena Ansey led the afterschool program as part of their music club, which encourages children to learn to work together, which helps develop self-respect and respect for other members of the group.
“Drumbeat is an evidence-based program which facilitates social and emotional development. The program also encourages teamwork to improve social skills and confidence”, explains Ms Ansey.
The results are impressive with positive feedback from teachers, parents and students. The program has proven to decrease social isolation, reduce stress, increase social and emotional learning, and reduce anti-social behaviour.
The students not only showed great progress with their new drumming skills but also showed improvement in their self-confidence and social behaviour. So much so, by the end of the 10 week program, the children were confident enough to perform at the school assembly in front of the whole school community.
“My son was very shy before starting the Drumbeat program but thanks to the program I have witnessed a real change in his self-confidence. He is making new friends and his social skills have highly improved”, confirmed one of the parents.
The Drumbeat Program will continue to run in Cassia Primary School for the remainder of this term and will also be offered to other local primary schools in South Hedland.