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The Action Thread Part Two

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90
CULTURE

Can YOU survive the zombie stat apocalypse?

30 October 2018 9:46PM UTC | By: SADOF ALEXANDER

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Join the fight against extreme poverty

 
  

It starts off small. Often, you don’t even notice what’s happening. But before long, it grows, spreading through the population like wildfire. Before you know it, it’s everywhere, and it’s your job to defend yourself against it!

If you’re a fan of zombie stories, this scenario probably sounds familiar to you. But it doesn’t just apply to the undead in TV and movies—it also applies to zombie stats!

Zombie stats are false or misleading, yet widely thought to be true. Often, even when a zombie stat is proven to be wrong, it still gets shared and believed. It seems no matter what you do, you can’t kill a zombie stat!

Also like zombies, these stats are harmful. Widespread belief in false facts prevents us from tackling real issues and exaggerating problems can hurt a cause instead of helping it.

Do you think you could survive a zombie stat apocalypse? We’ve put together a list of stats below. Proceed with caution—some of them are real, and some of them are zombie stats. It’s up to you to guess which is which!

Stats:
1. Women own less than 2% of the world’s land.

2. An estimated 650 million women alive today were married as children. That’s double the population of the US.

3. By 2050, Nigeria’s population will more than double from 195 million to an estimated 410 million, meaning that it will replace the US as the third most populated nation in the world.

4. 65% of all remaining arable land in the world lies in Africa.

5. In sub-Saharan Africa, women and girls spend roughly 40 billion hours a year collecting water—the equivalent of a year’s worth of labour by the entire workforce in France.

6. Most of the world’s refugees are in wealthy countries.

7. 33,000 girls become child brides every day.

8. There are more homeless men in the world than there are homeless women.

Think you spotted all the zombie stats? Check your answers below!

Answers:
1. Zombie Stat
There’s definitely a gap between male and female land ownership, but it isn’t quite this drastic. Across a sample of 10 African countries, 39% of women own land, either individually or jointly. This compares to 48% of men. Looking at individual ownership, that gap widens to only 12%of women, compared to 31% of men.

2. Real Stat

3. Real Stat

4. Zombie Stat
While the continent does have a great deal of arable land, it isn’t quite that much. Of all remaining arable land in the world, Africa has 32%.

5. Real Stat

6. Zombie Stat
There’s a belief that the US and many European countries shelter a substantial amount of refugees. In reality, the majority of the world’s refugees live in low or middle-income nations. The UN’s Refugee Agency estimates that 85% of the world’s refugees are sheltered by developing countries. Turkey, Pakistan, and Uganda sheltered the highest number of refugees in mid-2017. These three countries combined hold 6.3 million refugees.

7. Real Stat

8. Zombie Stat
There are multiple countries where there are more homeless men than women, including the UK and Germany. However, there have not been any factual studies done to measure global homelessness by gender.

How many did you guess correctly? Leave a comment with your results!

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6 DE NOVIEMBRE DE 2018

 

22
 
MEDIO AMBIENTE

La capa de ozono va camino a una total recuperación

Sin la capa de ozono, los rayos ultravioleta no permitirían la vida.

 

 

Por qué los Global Citizens deberían preocuparse
La recuperación de la capa de ozono se debe a la constante lucha de científicos y activistas. Este éxito podría convertirse en un gran ejemplo para futuras organizaciones del clima. Puedes unirte a nosotros y tomar acción sobre este tema aquí.


La capa de ozono está en camino de recuperarse parcialmente para el 2030 y de lograr una  una total recuperación para mitad del siglo, de acuerdo a recientes afirmaciones de Naciones Unidas.

 

La capa de ozono se encontraba en estado crítico a punto de ser totalmente destruída en 1980, pero cuando los científicos realizaron este descubriiento rápidamente descubrieron que uno de las causas era la utilización de ciertos químicos presentes en los aerosoles como los clorofluorocarbonos (CFC).


Los científicos rápidamente exigieron a los líderes mundiales prohibir ese tipo de químicos y tuvieron éxito, sentando un exitoso precedente para la lucha por el medio ambiente, habiendo salvado a la humanidad de las consecuencias devastadoras de perder la capa de ozono.

Actúa: Firma

 
 
 
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Y ahora, gracias al Protocolo de Montreal, el tratado global que protege la capa de ozono firmado en 1987, está dando buenos resultados.  

“El protocolo de Montreal es uno de los tratados multilaterales más exitosos de la historia por una razón”, dijo Erik Solheim, Director de Medio Ambiente de las Naciones Unidas, a través de un comunicado. “La mezcla cuidadosa de ciencia y acción colaborativa ha definido el protocolo por más de 30 años y fue realizado con tanta precisión que es justamente por eso que la Enmienda de Kigali es una gran promesa para las futuras acciones climáticas futuras”.

 

Desde el 2000, la capa de ozono ha comenzado a mejorar en una tasa de entre el 1% y 3%, de acuerdo a lo indicado por Naciones Unidas. La capa de ozono se encuentra en la capa superior de la atmósfera y bloquea los rayos ultravioletas dañinos. Sin ella, aumentan las posibilidades de cáncer de piel o daños en los ojos, entre otros problemas de salud de acuerdo a lo publicado por The Guardian.

 

En el siglo XX, los CFC´s fueron presentados como una alternativa a otras sustancias químicas como el amoníaco, y comenzaron a ser utilizadas en electrodomésticos tales como heladeras y aires acondicionados.

 

El problema ocurre cuando los CFC´s se elevan a la atmósfera y la luz ultravioleta comienza a separar los compuestos y las moléculas de cloro son liberadas y actúan de forma negativa en reacción junto con otras sustancias en el ozono.


Con los años, el Protocolo de Montreal fue actualizado para luchar contra otros químicos que también fueron identificados como dañinos para el medio ambiente.

En el 2016 el Protocolo de Montreal fue actualizado para incluir el Acuerdo de Kigali, que también alcanza a los hidrofluorocarbonos, otra sustancia tóxica para el ozono. Se espera que el acuerdo de KIgali sea ratificado el próximo año.

 

Más tarde ese mismo año también se descubrió que los niveles de ozono estaban declinando por un inesperado crecimiento en el uso de CFCs. La fuente de estas emisiones fue rastreada hasta China. Es por eso que se los busca parar y las Naciones Unidas y otros organismos de regulación global actualmente se encuentran presionando al Gobierno chino para cortar estas emisiones.

 

Sin embargo, incluso con estas nuevos valores, la capa de ozono se está recuperando según un reciente informe de Naciones Unidas, y los beneficios de su recuperación van mucho más allá de frenar la radiación ultravioleta.

Las sustancias que dañan el ozono son también gases de efecto invernadero y su eliminación podría ayudar a prevenir alrededor de 0.4 grados celsius en calentamiento global. El Acuerdo Climático de París espera poder prevenir que las temperaturas aumenten más de 1.5 o 2 grados celsius por arriba de los niveles preindustriales, por lo que 0.4 grados podrían romper ese acuerdo global.

 

El Protocolo de Montreal también muestra que los países pueden unirse para proteger el medio ambiente en situaciones de emergencia. Mientras el cambio climático siga siendo un desafío complejo de resolver, se requiere de políticas ambiciosas y sin precedentes en todos los aspectos de la sociedad, que van más allá de la prohibición de aerosoles. Las consecuencias podrían ser más extremas y graves que las de perder la capa de ozono y es ahora mismo el momento en el que hay que comenzar a tomar acción al respecto.  

 

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DEC. 1, 2017

 

1
 
ENVIRONMENT

The UN Wants to Ban Plastic Waste in Oceans

The effort is both urgent and extremely challenging.

United Nations delegates have a lot on the agenda next week as they gatherin Nairobi to explore ways to achieve a pollution-free planet.

Some of the issues include figuring out how to reduce soil pollution and how to shield landscapes from the ravages of armed conflict.

One issue, however, dwarfs the others — plastic pollution in the oceans.

Take Action: Take Three Pieces of Garbage With You When You Leave the Beach

 

Take Action: Tweet Now

 
 
 
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And the UN is considering tackling this problem at the root by drafting an all-out ban on plastic ocean waste, according to the BBC.

"There are many questions to be solved,” a source in the discussion told the BBC. “Should there be a legally binding instrument prohibiting plastic from the land?

"If not, what other sort of overarching action should there be? We are grappling with this huge issue in its early stages,” the person said.

The effort is both urgent and extremely challenging, according to the UN, but it shows that the will to act is there. 

"It's an extremely positive move," John Hourston, Founder of Blue Planet Society, told Global Citizen. "It puts marine plastic right up there with climate change and nuclear weapons and all the other things we have a global agreement for, so it means it's seen as a global threat, and that in itself is incredible."

Each year, an estimated 8 million metric tons of plastic enter the oceans, which is like emptying a garbage truck of plastic into an ocean every minute.

Great Pacific Garbage Patch.jpgImage: Ray Boland, NOAA

This plastic harms marine life up and down the food chain in multiple ways. For example, animals often mistake plastic waste for food and ingest it, which can lead to being poisoned or starvation. Large pieces of plastic like discarded fishing nets can entangle and kill creatures and small pieces of microplastic can blanket the ocean floor and leach toxins into the water.

Read More: The ‘Pepsi Lobster’ Isn’t Alone. These 5 Other Animals Were Harmed by Plastic

Growing awareness of this problem has spawned an industry dedicated to recovering plastic and turning it into products such as skateboards, sunglasses, and running shoes.

It has also inspired activists to conduct ocean clean-up campaigns. For example, a young Dutch entrepreneur is working on a massive system in the Pacific Ocean to clean up what is known as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. In India, a young lawyer enlisted hundreds of volunteers to clean up nearly 12 million pounds of trash from a beach.

Versa beach clean-upImage: Twitter screenshot @AfrozShah1

And governments are enacting more sweeping changes. Countries such as Kenya, Morocco, Zimbabwe, and France are banning different types of plastic.

But these campaigns haven’t been able to address the underlying problem — the global production of plastic and faulty waste management systems.

Poll | Environment
20073 Answered

Should countries ban plastic?

YesNo
 

Global Citizen campaigns on the UN’s Global Goals, which call for clean oceans, and you can take action on this issue here.

The UN’s proposal, according to people who spoke with the BBC, would attempt systemic change. Turning the proposal into lasting action may be challenging, Hourston of the Blue Planet Society said.

"It appears to be symbolic," he said. "Any international agreement, whether it be on climate or nuclear weapons is fairly hard to implement." 

Similar to the Paris climate agreement, the ban would start out small, the BBC reports, by getting countries to better track the scale of plastic pollution in their countries, formalizing beach clean-up systems, and ending the disposal of fishing nets and gear into oceans.

Sea turtle caught in gill netImage: WWF/Michael Gunther

Through country-wide tracking programs, the UN could develop a better understanding of where, why, and how much plastic is entering the oceans. Better systems for stopping plastic waste could then be developed.

Read More: Glitter Is Banned From This Nursery for What Is Actually a Great Reason

Encouraging countries to conduct beach cleanups would be another easy and effective win, because a lot of plastic breaks down into microplastic on beaches before being lifted by waves into the water, the BBC notes.

Banning boats from dumping fishing gear would cut down on the number of marine animals who get caught in nets and die.

The proposal has widespread support, according to the BBC, because plastic waste in the oceans has become such an obvious problem.

Some countries, however, could water down the effort, the BBC notes. For instance, China is the biggest producer of plastic waste and may not want to limit domestic industries. Without China, Hourston said, the agreement "may be pointless." The US, meanwhile, has historically been reluctant to sign onto global agreements.    

The UN has already called for an end to plastic waste in the oceans by 2025, but this latest push could accelerate that timeline.

Either way, growing awareness of the problem is making action more feasible.

Read More: Shocking Photos Show Extent of Plastic Pollution in Caribbean

As Erik Solheim, Head of UN Environment, said earlier in the year:  

"It is past time that we tackle the plastic problem that blights our oceans. Plastic pollution is surfing onto Indonesian beaches, settling onto the ocean floor at the North Pole, and rising through the food chain onto our dinner tables. We’ve stood by too long as the problem has gotten worse. It must stop."

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OCT. 9, 2018

 

43
 
GIRLS & WOMEN

Keira Knightley Pens Powerful Essay on Motherhood and Gender Inequality in the Workplace

“They belittle me, they try not to listen to me."


Why Global Citizens Should Care 
Women face discrimination at work, especially when they’re mothers. Essays like Keira Knightley’s remind us gender equality is a widespread concern. You can join us in taking action on this issue here

Keira Knightley has had it with gender inequality.

And the Academy Award-nominated actress just penned an essay titled "The Weaker Sex" explaining why. She graphically addresses the realities of childbirth and shares her personal experience with gender discrimination in the workplace.

Knightley’s piece is part of the essay collection Feminists Don’t Wear Pink (And Other Lies), released earlier this month and curated by Scarlett Curtis, the writer, and co-founder of the Pink Protest, a community of activists who founded the #FreePeriods campaign. Actors Emma Watson and Saoirse Ronan also contributed to the book.

Take Action: How much do you know about women in the workforce?

 

 

Refinery29 published excerpts from Knightley’s powerful essay, which she dedicated to her daughter, on Friday. 

"I turn up on time, word perfect, with ideas and an opinion. I am up with you [her daughter] all night if you need me. Sometimes I cry I'm so tired. Up with you all night and work all day ... My male colleagues can be late, can not know their lines. They can shout and scream and throw things. They can turn up drunk or not turn up at all. They don't see their children. They're working. They need to concentrate," she writes about the different gender expectations set for parents when they get back to work after having children. 

Read More: Gender Inequality Could Be Costing the World $160 Trillion

Knightley has a point. A 2018 study found paternity leave is only the beginning of closing the gender wage gap, and mothers are still held to high, unfair standards. 

The British actress notes the pressure on women to dive right back into their careers after labor. She mentions Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton, who made a public appearance shortly after giving birth.

"Hide. Hide our pain, our bodies splitting, our breasts leaking, our hormones raging. Look beautiful. Look stylish, don't show your battleground, Kate. Seven hours after your fight with life and death, seven hours after your body breaks open, and bloody, screaming life comes out. Don't show. Don't tell. Stand there with your girl and be shot by a pack of male photographers,” Knightley writes

 

 

Feminists Don’t Wear Pink & other lies is OUT. A collection of essays by 52 women on what feminism means to them & our attempt to bridge the gap between the feminist hashtag & the scholarly text. I made this book for my 15 Y/O self. I hope you like it. https://www.amazon.co.uk/Feminists-Dont-Wear-Pink-other/dp/0241357187/ref=nodl_ 

 
243 people are talking about this
 
 
 

The high-profile celebrity, who has criticized how women are portrayed on screen in the past, details feeling shut down by men on film sets. 

“They belittle me, they try not to listen to me, they don't talk to me, they don't want to hear my voice, my experience, my opinion,” she says

Read More: 10 Powerful Quotes on Motherhood From Famous Moms

In the essay, Knightley goes on to mention how people police women’s appearances and try to put a limit on their success. 

"I work with men and they worry that I don't like them. It makes them mad, it makes them sad, it makes them shout and scream. I like them. But I don't want to flirt and mother them ... I don't want to flirt with you because I don't want to fuck you, and I don't want to mother you because I am not your mother." 

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Taking to the stage tonight on The Ray D'Arcy Show are young harpers from Music Generation Mayo, Music Generation Louth and Music Generation Laois, who will join others from Dublin, Meath and Wexford. Following the success of National Harp Day, the young musicians have been brought together thanks to Harp Ireland. Tune in tonight at 9pm on RTÉ for this harping extravaganza!

 

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Do you know about the Access to Work grant? ? ? ? ?️ 
It is money to help you do your job if you have a disability or a health condition. The amount of money you get depends on your situation. ? 
It can pay for practical support to help you start or stay in work or to move into self-employment. ? 
Find out more: http://bit.ly/2ojl8nl ⬅️

La imagen puede contener: 1 persona, sentado e interior

 

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Tonight CCI board member, Helen Faughnan, was presented with a cheque from Muriel Richardson and Nicola Cowman who raised a WHOPPING €10,000 for CCI on their recent Paris2Nice fundraising cycle with Carne Global Financial Services ??‍♀️

A massive thank you to these two ladies for their incredible efforts and generosity. Your selflessness will have a life-saving impact on the children living in Chernobyl’s dark shadow.

La imagen puede contener: 3 personas, personas sonriendo, personas de pie

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1
GIRLS AND WOMEN

How this inspiring programme is helping girls soar

November 9 2018 | By: SADOF ALEXANDER

JOIN

Join the fight against extreme poverty

 
  

The Zulu Sierra – Papa Whiskey Whiskey (ZS-PWW) may look like any other plane. But, this aircraft is special because it carries bright young minds to an exceptional future. The plane is owned by Refilwe Ledwaba. She’s the first black woman to fly for the South Africa Police Service and the first black woman to be a helicopter pilot in South Africa!

Refilwe grew up in Lenyenye, a small township in the Limpopo region of South Africa. She is the youngest of seven children, all raised by their mother in a single-parent home. Originally, she wanted to become a doctor, but everything changed on a flight from Johannesburg to Cape Town. That fateful flight had a female pilot, inspiring her to take to the skies!

She wrote to over 200 South African companies asking them to help fund her education. The South Africa Police Service responded, offering to pay for her training and help her get a commercial pilot license.

But Refilwe’s story doesn’t stop there. She’s since left the Police Service to focus on teaching. In fact, she founded the Girls Fly Programme in Africa Foundation(GFPA), giving a head start to the next generation of women aviation and space leaders in Africa.

GFPA is a non-profit that has set-up a training programme and an annual flying camp for teenage girls. The camp, run with Women and Aviation, teaches girls from across South Africa, Botswana, and Cameroon about aviation.

The girls spend their days figuring out computer coding, building robots, and completing flight simulations. They also get an opportunity to take a flying lesson on board the ZS-PWW, where they learn the basics of soaring through the skies. At night, they get to know each other around an open fire and sing and dance, forming lifelong friendships.

The girls come from different backgrounds, from townships to private schools, but all achieve high scores in math and science at their schools. GFPA gives them the opportunity to meet professionals working in science, technology, engineering, and maths (STEM), and learn about the exciting and hugely varied career opportunities for them in these fields.

“I think STEM is very important because, on a personal note, it opened a lot of doors for me,” says Refilwe. “So if you’re not going to prepare women for those jobs in the future, then we’re lost.”

Refilwe made history in South Africa. Now, she’s paving the way for a new generation of girls to do the same.

Every girl deserves the opportunity to reach the skies. If you want to support girls worldwide, join our Poverty is Sexist movement!

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EDUCATION

The Pay Gap for Teachers Has Reached an All-Time High

Today, teachers earn almost 20% less than other college graduates.


Why Global Citizens Should Care
Quality education for all is key to ending extreme poverty. Teachers are the backbone of our education system — they deserve adequate pay and support. Join us in taking action on this issue here.

Teachers in the US have long been underpaid, but today their wages are currently lower than ever, according to a new study published by the Economic Policy Institute on Wednesday, reports CityLab.

In 1979, teachers earned 5.5% less than their peers, but that pay gap has now widened to 18.7%. Adjusting for inflation, researchers found that, on average, teachers' weekly pay decreased by $27 from 1996 to 2017. Meanwhile, average weekly pay has risen by $137 for college graduates in other professional roles.

Though the cost of living has gone up by nearly 50% in 29 states, most teachers in those states will earn less this academic year than they did in the 1999-2000 school year, CBS News reports.

Take Action: Call on US Government and Business Leaders to #FundEducation

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As a result, teachers throughout the country are struggling to make ends meet with salaries that are often below middle-class income levels. Unable to attract and retain talented educators, schools in the US are facing teacher shortages, according to the Economic Policy Institute.

Overcrowded and underfunded classrooms across the US have made teaching more challenging, but low teacher salaries have made it difficult for schools to attract talented educators equipped to handle such conditions.

In low-income districts, where students often suffer from lack of resources at home, teachers face several additional of challenges. About 40% of new teachers quit within the first five years and this rate is 50% higher at schools in low-income communities. Inadequate support and pay for teachers ultimately affects students and those already experiencing poverty are most vulnerable.

Between 2009 and 2014, 8% of teachers dropped out of the profession each year, CityLab reports.

Underscoring the nationwide pay gap, teacher pay varies drastically from state to state and district to district. While the national average teacher salary is $58,951, educators in Mississippi on average make $42,925 and in South Dakota $42,668 per year.

This spring, teachers went on strike across the US protesting low pay and inadequate resources in their schools. Teachers in West Virginia led the charge in March with a nine-day walkout. In response to their protests, legislators conceded to a 5% pay raise.

"It's not the raise, as much as it is having the respect that we deserve from the government, and I think that was proven," one Calhoun County teacher told the New York Times.

In Oklahoma — where teachers make about 67 cents to the dollar compared to other college graduates — the teachers' union followed suit a month later with its own walkout.

Read More: US Funding Cuts Could Close Palestinian Refugee Schools

Meanwhile, in Arizona, teachers led a "walk-in day" demanding a 20% pay raise and a return to pre-recession level school funding. After five days of protesting, their efforts were met with a 19% pay increase, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Critics of this spring's teacher strikes argue that teachers receive a number of benefits that offset their lower salaries, such as retirement plans, health and life insurance, lower payroll taxes, and long summer breaks, reports CityLab.

However, beyond their shrinking salaries, the advantages teachers once enjoyed are also taking a hit. CityLab reports that in several states, teachers have far fewer union protections than they did previously.

In the 1960s, women could earn almost 15% more as teachers than in other fields, but now they make 15% less. And men are also face a significant pay penalty, making about 25% less than their peers.

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MAY 23, 2017

 

1
 
GIRLS & WOMEN

This Woman First Escaped Slavery. Then She Tackled Mount Everest.

Kanchhi Maya Tamang is on a mission.

sex trafficking victim scales mt everestImage: Kanchi Maya Tamang, a Nepali survivor of human trafficking, poses for a photo after climbing Mount Everest in Nepal to highlight the dangers of trafficking and modern day slavery. Photo taken on May 20, 2017. Handout via TRF/Pemba Dorje Sherpa/UN Women

By Nita Bhalla

NEW DELHI, May 22 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - A Nepali woman who was trafficked, exploited and abused as a maid in Egypt has conquered Mount Everest in a bid to highlight the dangers of trafficking in her impoverished Himalayan homeland where thousands are sold into slavery every year.

Kanchhi Maya Tamang, 28, is thought to be the first survivor of human trafficking to scale the world's highest mountain.

UN Women in Nepal - which supported Tamang's expedition - said in a statement on Monday that she reached Everest's peak on Saturday.

"My mission has first and foremost been to stop forced migration of women and girls from my district, which is listed as the top district for trafficking of women and girls in Nepal," Tamang radioed from Mount Everest Base camp, according to the statement.

"I want to foster initiatives that create local employment opportunities and empower women, both those facing forced migration and returnees like myself. We must empower girls - give them a rope, show them a rock, then ask them to climb it."

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Learning music early can make your child a better reader

November 8, 2018 by Anita Collins And Misty Adoniou, The Conversation
Learning music early can make your child a better reader
As we look to improve the reading outcomes of our young children, more music education in our preschools and primary schools could be the answer. Credit: www.shutterstock.com

Neuroscience has found a clear relationship between music and language acquisition. Put simply, learning music in the early years of schooling can help children learn to read.

 

Music, language and the brain

Music processing and language development share an overlapping network in the brain. From an evolutionary perspective, the human brain developed music processing well before language and then used that processing to create and learn language.

At birth, babies understand language as if it was music. They respond to the rhythm and melody of language before they understand what the words mean.

Babies and young children mimic the language they hear using those elements of rhythm and melody, and this is the sing-song style of speech we know and love in toddlers.

Musically trained children are better readers

The foundation of reading is speech and to learn how to speak, children must first be able to distinguish speech from all other sounds. Music helps them do this.

Reading is ultimately about making meaning from the words on the page. A number of skills combine to help us make those meanings, including the ability to distinguish between the sounds in words, and fluency of reading.

Fluency includes the ability to adjust the the patterns of stress and intonation of a phrase, such as from angry to happy and the ability the choose the correct inflection, such as a question or an exclamation. These highly developed auditory processing skills are enhanced by musical training.

Musically trained children also have better reading comprehension skills.

Music can also give us clues about a child's struggles with reading.

Research has found three- and four-year-old children who could keep a steady musical beat were more reading-ready at the age of five, than those who couldn't keep a beat.

 

 

What parents and teachers can do

 

Language learning starts from day one of life with parents talking and singing to their babies. Babies bond with their parents and community primarily through their voice, so singing to your baby both forms a bond with them and engages their auditory processing network.

Taking toddlers to a well-structured, high quality music class each week will build the musical skills that have been found to be so effective in learning to read. It is vital to look for classes that include movement activities, singing, and responding to both sound and silence. They should use good quality music-making toys and instruments.

As they head into preschool, a crucial time for language development, look for the same well-structured music learning programs delivered daily by qualified educators. The songs, rhymes and rhythm activities our children do in preschool and daycare are actually preparing them for reading.

Music programs should build skills sequentially. They should encourage children to work to sing in tune, use instruments and move in improvised and structured ways to music.

Children should also be taught to read musical notation and symbols when learning music. This reinforces the symbol to sound connection which is also crucial in reading words.

Importantly, active music learning is the key. Having loud music on in the background does little for their language development and could actually impede their ability to distinguish speech from all the other noise.

This isn't to say children need silence to learn. In fact, the opposite is true. They need a variety of sound environments and the ability to choose what their brains need in terms of auditory stimulation. Some students need noise to focus, some students need silence and each preference is affected by the type of learning they are being challenged to do.

Sound environments are more than just how loud the class is getting. It's about the quality of the sounds. Squeaky brakes every three minutes, loud air-conditioning, background music that works for some and not others and irregular bangs and crashes all impact on a child's ability to learn.

Teachers can allow students to get excited in their lessons and make noise appropriately, but keep some muffled headphones in your classroom for when students want to screen out sound.

Music for all

Our auditory processing network is the first and largest information gathering system in our brains. Music can enhance the biological building blocks for language. Music both prepares children for learning to read, and supports them as they continue their reading journey.

Unfortunately, it's disadvantaged students who are least likely to have music learning in their schools. Yet research shows they could benefit the most from music learning.

As we look to ways to improve the reading outcomes of our young children, more music education in our preschools and primary schools may be one way clear way forward.

1x1.gif Explore further: How music lessons can improve language skills



Read more at: https://phys.org/news/2018-11-music-early-child-reader.html#jCp

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