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What is the Kodaly Method?

Zoltan Kodaly (1882-1967) The Kodaly Method is a way of developing musical skills and teaching musical concepts beginning in very young children. This method uses folk songs, Curwen hand signs, pictures, movable ‘doh’, rhythm symbols and syllables. It was first introduced in Hungary but is now used in many countries, either alone or in combination with other methods. Who created this method? The Kodaly Method is an approach to music education based on the philosophies of Zoltan Kodaly. Zoltan Kodaly was a Hungarian composer, author, educator and expert on Hungarian folk songs. Although this method wasn't exactly invented by Kodaly, it was developed by his colleagues and students in the mid-20th century based on his teachings. What were Zoltan Kodaly's goals and philosophies?
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Elevate the level of teacher training. Improve musical literacy in schools. Everyone is capable and has the right to musical literacy. Singing is the foundation of musical learning. Music education must begin with the very young. The importance of using folk music (native folk songs and folk songs of other countries) and music of high artistic value. Incorporating games, movement, playing instruments, reading and writing music with singing. Sequential process following a child's natural learning development: Aural - oral - kinesthetic Written - pictorial - abstract Read - recognised

What types of music and instruments are used in the classroom? Songs of high artistic value, both folk and composed, are used in the Kodaly classroom. Songs that are in the pentatonic scale are emphasized at the beginning level. According to Kodaly, "Nobody wants to stop at pentatony. But, indeed, the beginnings must be made there; on the one hand, in this way the child's biogenetical development is natural and, on the other, this is what is demanded by a rational pedagogical sequence." Other songs that may be used include chants, dancing songs, lullabies, nursery rhymes, songs for circle games and story songs.

Froebel College of Education November 2011


at the same time. Froebel College of Education November 2011 2 . Zoltan Kodaly Quotes: "Only art of intrinsic value is suitable for children! Everything else is harmful. a thirst which will last for a lifetime.” "To teach a child an instrument without first giving him preparatory training and without developing singing. more complex phenomenon than is a simple song.” “We should read music in the same way that an educated adult will read a book: in silence. the aim of the Kodaly method is to assist every child to become musically literate.create. read and write music. but imagining the sound. solfege. Using the Kodaly method for musical training. Using this method under the guidance of a certified Kodaly teacher. sing. as is awarded in piano or other instruments.” "Teach music and singing at school in such a way that it is not a torture but a joy for the pupil. improvise. dance. analyse. The sequence followed may be simplified as: listen . Building on this basic understanding they soon learn how to perform. learn how to play instruments. This is done by utilising several approaches. the materials used in teaching musical concepts varies depending on the age of the student. listen to and analyse classical music of the world. In his and write . their skills increase in order to compose music of their own. children are able to develop their musical ability by singing traditional folk songs. sight-reading. Further. Instead. central to the Kodaly method: use of rhythm.sing . compose. with a silent "l") is a musical education paradigm used to build singing and ear tuning abilities in young children." Various rhythm and tonal instruments are also used. listening. students can develop listening skills. ear training. performing and creating music. instill a thirst for finer music in him. sight-singing. and. reading and dictating to the highest level along with the playing is to build upon sand.What are the musical instruments used? The voice is the main musical instrument of this method. There is no musical "grade" with the method.understand . writing." ________________________ The Kodaly Method (pronounced ko-dah-y. What is a typical lesson like and what are the key concepts learned? Although the Kodaly Method follows a set sequence. Musical literacy is also developed using aural and visual memory experiences. including xylophones and recorders. "Singing connected with movements and action is a much more ancient.

students first learn to listen to sounds and tones in order to form words 2. to widen the singing voice. using the Kodaly method. songs or melodies that are native to the student are introduced first. The hand signals enable students to visualise the tone. which concentrate on vocal awareness. By way of introduction.the student develops the ability to read written material The same applies for the development of musical literacy. Written . They will also learn how to clap the rhythm of a text. Primarily these must be in the mother tongue (from their country of native origin). Reference Choksy. (1981) The Kodály Context: Creating an Environment for Musical Learning. Englewood Cliffs. For example.The basic philosophy of the Kodaly method teaches that all people who are capable of "lingual literacy" (those who have the ability to speak) are also capable of musical literacy. Young children start at the base level where they are taught to sing in tune to match musical patterns. But for the beginner. One key aspect of the Kodaly method is the use of the body in the expression of music. and clap a beat. for greatest effect. learning music using the Kodaly method is akin to learning a language. 1981 Froebel College of Education November 2011 3 . soh-lah-soh-me. the next level is to step to a beat. Building on this. So in addition to bringing their voice in tune and clapping to the beat. For more advanced users of the Kodaly method. L. Reading . classical instruments such as xylophones (with removable bars) and recorders are introduced. Songs from other cultures can be gradually introduced. and clap the rhythm while thinking about the words whilst not voicing them out loud. There are three sequential learning concepts that are traditionally learnt in language development: 1. The Kodaly method teaches singing and listening techniques comprised of rhythm symbols and syllables. Aural .once words are understood. to determine whether it is rising or falling. Musical literacy skills are built from the basic understanding of language development. New Jersey: Prentice-Hall. along with hand signals to demonstrate the relationship between tones. words and tones can be translated into written form 3. children learn to say musical words in a rhythm.