An action research study of creative music experiences with Grade 4 and 5 students using the baritone ukulele

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Laidlaw, Jordan
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Using an action research methodology, I investigated my practice of creating music with Grade 4 and 5 students (N = 43) in a school on the Canadian prairies. The intent of this self-study was to answer two research questions: (a) what impact will the creative music experiences have on students’ learning in creative expression in music; and (b) what are students’ perspectives on engaging in the creative music process? Data sources included: field notes, student assessments, video recordings, debriefing sessions, small group conversations, and surveys. Qualitative data was analyzed thematically while quantitative data was summarized using descriptive statistics. The large majority of students achieved the targeted curricular outcomes, as well as other outcomes not specifically targeted. Students were successful in composing collaboratively with peers, in generating musical ideas, and overall enjoyed the creative experiences. Social disagreements and absences were found to hinder the appreciation of composing for some students.
music education, creativity, music composition, action research, ukulele