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Discovering the Musical MindA view of creativity as learning$
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Jeanne Bamberger

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199589838

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199589838.001.0001

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Music as embodied mathematics: A study of a mutually informing affinity

Music as embodied mathematics: A study of a mutually informing affinity

(p.295) Chapter 17 Music as embodied mathematics: A study of a mutually informing affinity
Discovering the Musical Mind

Jeanne Bamberger

Oxford University Press

The argument examined in this chapter is that music—when approached through making and responding to coherent musical structures and facilitated by multiple, intuitively accessible representations—can become a learning context in which basic mathematical ideas may be elicited and perceived as relevant and important. Students’ inquiry into the bases for their perceptions of musical coherence provides a path into the mathematics of ratio, proportion, fractions, and common multiples. In a similar manner, we conjecture that other topics in mathematics—patterns of change, transformations, and invariants—might also expose, illuminate, and account for more general organizing structures in music. Drawing on experience with 11- and 12-year-old students working in a software music/math environment, we illustrate the role of multiple representations, multi-media, and the use of multiple sensory modalities in eliciting and developing students’ initially implicit knowledge of music and its inherent mathematics.

Keywords:   mathematics, software, multimedia, senses, patterns

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