School of Music


Doctor of Music Education (DME)


Jerry Newman


Music and Arts Integration, Curriculum Integration, Interdisciplinary, Mathematics, Language Arts, Neuroscience, Cognitive Abilities, Music Education


Elementary Education | Music


Some perspectives of educators and community members in small rural school districts fail to see the academic benefits of music education and the importance of integrated forms of study, despite the many clear connections that can be seen between the general music curriculum and other content areas such as math and language arts. Interdisciplinary studies in general music education are essential for student growth across content areas. This study reveals the importance of music integration and interdisciplinary music studies in small rural elementary schools. It gives example lessons of mathematics and language arts in the elementary music curricula. Guided by literature and observational data, this qualitative case study explores interdisciplinary studies in elementary general music classrooms. Findings on interdisciplinary music connections across content areas, music integration, and music and the brain have emerged as themes through exploring existing literature and observations of music classes in small rural elementary schools. Since music education longs to be understood, this study and the interdisciplinary lessons provided could benefit elementary general music education teachers and advance elementary teachers’ knowledge and understanding across content areas. This project exemplifies the intersection between music education and learning across content areas, specifically mathematics and language arts. Further, this study and lessons encourage further research by music educators to find lessons and connections that increase student learning across content areas. Further research could also seek information regarding the perceptions of community members and educators towards music education in small rural elementary schools.