Music Therapy Enhances Attention Span and Promotes

Language Ability in Young Special Needs Children










        Usually young special needs children have one or more disabilities which cause multiple learning difficulties, and often their language ability and attention span are compromised. Concentration is an important key for learning and language ability is a basic communication tool. Therefore, the main goal of the study is through theory analysis and experimental teaching to explore the possibility of using music therapy to enhance attention span and promote the language ability of young special needs children.

                 The methodology of the study used a multiple-baseline across individuals design model. Three 4-5 year-old subjects enrolled in a private kindergarten in Taichung, Taiwan, were selected by purposive sampling to participate. The duration including the baseline was 20 weeks with one hour instructional sessions once per week.

        There was a quantitative analysis to measure validity based on assessment scales used in the observation forms by three observers. There was also a qualitative study using interviews with parents and classroom teachers. The results were the following:
1. Considering quantitative research, based on the comparison of pre- and post-test and observation forms, the scores for the attention span and language ability of young special needs children were clearly enhanced.
2. Considering qualitative research, based on the observation by parents and teachers, the attention span and language ability of young special needs children were improved.