The damaging impact of CD players being overused
CD players, ipods, computers, radios etc can often be seen in early years environment playing anything from nursery rhymes, classical music or even pop music however when these are played on loop every day it can have some very damaging effect on children’s development.
Music is incredibly beneficial for children with learning across the board being promoted and supported through music, song and expressive arts and because of this practitioners feel they are positively promoting children’s development rather than hindering it. Music is something that definitely should not be banned in the early years however it should be limited to certain activities, sessions or interests.
How are CD players damaging to children and their communication skills?
When played on loop and overused the impact on children can become very negative. Issues of overuse can include:
- Hinders listening and attention development- Children cannot concentrate and listen to others around them to learn to interact if there are too much distraction and background noise. Without children first being able to develop attention and listening skills they will be unable to move up the language development pyramid to develop communication skills in other areas. Although many believe that a CD does promote listening and attention skills when used as just background noise it can have the opposite effect. These skills need to be built through face to face interaction and joining in play.
- Too fast – Often when music is used during song or rhyme time sessions it is fun and add a new element to the session the tempo on the CD can be quick and too fast. Whilst this does create some excitement a CD should not be used for a whole song and rhyme session as children learn to communicate more effectively through talking and speaking at a slower tempo.
- Too loud – Often if the music is being played in the background the children will become louder in order to communicate with one another, in turn, the music is often then turned up by the practitioner so everyone can hear the music, again the children then become louder to compete with the volume of the CD. This can quickly lead to volume in the room being far too loud and then no one can effectively communicate
- Overwhelming – For some children to a combination of other children making a noise, toys and games making a noise and then the added noise from background music can become overwhelming. This can lead to outbursts of unwanted behaviour or children feeling anxious and unsettled
- Discourages Communication – Often nursery rhyme CD’s can be found being played regularly in baby room as it can be soothing for the children and offer some comfort when it is too quiet however it can discourage children from trying to communicate and also discourage practitioners from communicating with the children as they are listening to music rather than listening and paying attention to communication signals from the babies.
It is down to each individual setting how they view the use of music and CD players within their rooms and decide on the most beneficial approach for them.