The Musical Playground: Global Tradition and Change in Children's Songs and Games

The Musical Playground: Global Tradition and Change in Children's Songs and Games

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By (author) Kathryn Marsh

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  • Publisher: Oxford University Press Inc
  • Format: Paperback | 448 pages
  • Dimensions: 155mm x 229mm x 28mm | 658g
  • Publication date: 22 January 2009
  • Publication City/Country: New York
  • ISBN 10: 0195308980
  • ISBN 13: 9780195308983
  • Edition statement: New.
  • Illustrations note: 10 halftones, 20 line illustrations
  • Sales rank: 585,327

Product description

The Musical Playground is a new and fascinating account of the musical play of school-aged children. Based on fifteen years of ethnomusicological field research in urban and rural school playgrounds around the globe, Kathryn Marsh provides unique insights into childrens musical playground activities across a comprehensive scope of social, cultural, and national contexts. With a sophisticated synthesis of ethnomusicological and music education approaches, Marsh examines sung and chanted games, singing and dance routines associated with popular music and sports chants, and more improvised and spontaneous chants, taunts, and rhythmic movements. The books index of more than 300 game genres is a valuable reference to readers in the field of childrens folklore, providing a unique map of game distribution across an array of cultures and geographical locations. On the companion website, readers will be able to view on streamed video, field recordings of childrens musical play throughout the wide range of locations and cultures that form the core of Marshs study, allowing them to better understand the music, movement, and textual characteristics of musical games and interactions. Copious notated musical examples throughout the book and the website demonstrate characteristics of game genres, childrens generative practices, and reflections of cultural influences on game practice, and valuable, practical recommendations are made for developing pedagogies which reflect more child-centred and less Eurocentric views of childrens play, musical learning, and musical creativity. Marsh brings readers to playgrounds in Australia, Norway, the USA, the United Kingdom, and Korea, offering them an important and innovative study of how children transmit, maintain, and transform the games of the playground. The Musical Playground will appeal to practitioners and researchers in music education, ethnomusicology, and folklore.

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Author information

Kathryn Marsh is Chair of Music Education at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, University of Sydney. With a PhD in ethnomusicology and a professional background in music education, her teaching interests relate to elementary and world music education and educational research methods. She has presented internationally on children's musical play and cross-cultural teaching and learning.

Review quote

a landmark in children's folklore scholarship... it has been a privilege and a humbling experience to have reviewed this encyclopedic book, and I hope it will remain a key resource for many years to come Gwenda Beed Davey, Play and Folklore

Table of contents

SECTION 1: CHILDRENS MUSICAL PLAY AND CREATIVITY: ADULT VIEWS ; Chapter 1: Conceptions of Childrens Musical Play, ; Chapter 2: Childrens Musical Creativity and Oral Transmission ; SECTION 2: INTO THE FIELD ; Chapter 3: Investigating Musical Play: Ethics and Pragmatics ; Chapter 4: The Playing Fields ; SECTION 3: TRANSMISSION PROCESSES IN THE PLAYGROUND ; Chapter 5: The Influence of Social Grouping ; Chapter 6: Teaching and Learning in the Playground ; Chapter 7: Changing the Tradition ; SECTION 4: COMPOSITION IN PERFORMANCE ; Chapter 8: Composition in the Playground ; Chapter 9: Variations on a theme: Sar Macka Dora ; Chapter 10: Style and Cultural Idiosyncracy ; SECTION 5: CONCLUSIONS AND PEDAGOGICAL IMPLICATIONS ; Chapter 11: Conclusions and Pedagogical Implications ; Appendix 1: Index of Playground Singing Game Genres from International Field Sites 1990-2004 ; Appendix 2: Transcription Methods and Notation and Documentation Conventions ; Appendix 3: Text Variants of the Sar Macka Dora Game Genre ; Appendix 4: Selected Musical Transcriptions of Games ; Appendix 5: Transcriptions of Selected Norwegian Games ; Appendix 6: Transcriptions of Selected UK Games ; Appendix 7: Transcriptions of Selected USA Games ; Appendix 8: Transcriptions of Selected Korean Games ; Appendix 9: Transcriptions of Selected Australian Games ; Appendix 10: Additional Transcriptions ; Appendix 11: Video Examples of Illustrative Game Performances from International Field Sites ; NOTES ; BIBLIOGRAPHY ; INDEX