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The Soundscape of Early Childhood Education

It's a relief to hear the rain. It's the sound of billions of drops, all equal, all equally committed to falling, like a sudden outbreak of democracy.
Alice Oswald

“I first began thinking about sound when I was a young child,” writes Carol Garboden Murray, in an article that forms the basis for the newest Exchange Reflections, “The Soundscape of Early Childhood Education.” She explains:

“I am noise sensitive and did not like school. The cafeteria and hallways were painfully noisy places, but I loved my first-grade teacher’s voice. I recall watching her lips move and soaking in her warm voice without paying attention to a thing she was saying. It was the tone of her voice that anchored me and made me feel safe in a big public school. I still have a hard time being in crowded noisy places, so as a teacher of young children, I have learned to adapt—and with an awareness of sound, I have thought a great deal about how to create pleasant soundscapes for young children.”

Garboden Murray encourages adults to think carefully about the sounds (harsh or pleasant) that are present in early childhood programs and offers many ideas for discussion.

Gryphon House - Preschool Preparedness.

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