Improving Children’s Literacy through Music Teaching

Excerpt taken from a January 28th, 2013 article by the Institute of Education, University of London:

The New London Orchestra’s flagship education project Literacy through Music is aiming to improve primary school teachers’ confidence and skills in using music in the classroom, and provide them with methods and activities that they can use to support literacy development.


The scheme, now in its second full year, is being run by the New London Orchestra, which provided in-service training (Inset) for teachers. Sessions involving the teaching of music and literacy activities took place in 30 primary schools in the London Borough of Newham, involving around 650 teachers during 2011- 2012.


The previous (first) year’s scheme evaluation (available at had found that the children taking part in the scheme had significantly improved their reading abilities compared to those in control groups. This positive finding led to the NLO organising the professional development programme that built on the evaluation of the first year.


Literacy through Music is made possible through a donation to the New London Orchestra from the JPMorgan Chase Foundation.


Researchers from the Institute of Education carried out a thorough evaluation of the latest phase of the programme by surveying the teachers who took part.

Professor Graham Welch, who led the research, said:


“The New London Orchestra’s Literacy through Music project is demonstrating the power of music to enhance the quality of children’s learning in other areas of development. A key design feature is the close partnership and teamwork exhibited by NLO musicians, teachers and teaching assistants. The outcomes of the initiative are very positive”.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *