Children listening with their entire moving bodies

‘creAtive’ music listening

  • Tiago Madalozzo Universidade Estadual do Paraná
Keywords: active music listening, childhood cultures, early childhood music education


Theoretical background or Context

Listening is a fundamental way in which children relate to music in their daily lives. Palheiros (2006) classified different settings for music listening among children and adolescents, highlighting that, although none of them involve a passive mental attitude, there are different situations where there is no physical attitude—listening not engaging the entire body. On the other hand, ‘active music listening’ is a concept that has been used by many authors, such as Wuytack & Palheiros (1995) and Bastião (2004), and is defined as a way of listening that includes the whole body, in mental and physical engagement with music—therefore, in a conscious musical appreciation, considering the role of an affective and inventive involvement of the listeners in different and diverse ways of sensing and reacting to the music they listen to (Madalozzo & Madalozzo, 2019). In this paper, which is the result of an ongoing post-doctoral study in Education, we assume that music listening takes an important role on childhood cultures (Madalozzo & Madalozzo, 2021), as we acknowledge that it is a central element for signifying and comprehending the world for children. By producing and listening to music with their entire moving bodies, children not only act musically, but interact with the environment around them and, through music, better understand the world. Music listening is a part of the childhood cultures, which children do in a ‘creaCtive way’, both active and creative (Madalozzo, 2021).



This research intends to expand the ways in which music is considered when we refer to childhood cultures, highlighting the specific role of music listening on children’s daily lives. It aims to examine the concepts of childhood cultures (Sarmento, 2004) and ‘child body’ (Camargo & Garanhani, in press), leading to the assumption that by moving and listening to music, children are invariably signifying and understanding the surrounding world in a ‘creAtive’way.



This is a bibliographic investigation: a research on children, where the concepts of childhood cultures, ‘child body’, and ‘creActive music listening’ are defined. The last one, that in the process of delineation, will point out to teaching strategies on ‘creActive music listening’ for children designed for Art and Music teachers in a subsequent stage of the investigation.


Conclusions/Final considerations

By merging key concepts on Music Education and on Childhood Studies and encircling the definition of ‘creActive music listening’, it is possible to formulate a more consistent way to understand music listening on childhood, resonating with a broader view of childhood cultures.


Bastião, Z. (2004). Pontes educacionais: uma proposta pedagógica em apreciação musical. Encontro Nacional da Associação Brasileira de Educação Musical, vol. 13, Rio de Janeiro, p. 1114–18.
Camargo, G. B., & Garanhani, M. C. (no prelo). O corpo criança na travessia da educação infantil para os anos iniciais do ensino fundamental. Educação e Pesquisa, São Paulo, v. 48, e239129, 2022. Retrieved from
Madalozzo, T. (2021). “I want [to hear] it again!”: 5-year-old children’s creActive involvement in music education.” Revista da Associação Brasileira de Educação Musical, 29, 120-136. Retrieved from
Madalozzo, T., & Madalozzo, V. D. A. B. (2019). Active music listening: promoting music and movement in early childhood music education. International Journal of Music in Early Childhood, 14(2), 211-223.
Madalozzo, T. & Madalozzo, V. D. A. B. (2021). Childhood cultures on early childhood music and movement: constellations at play. RELAdEI. Revista Latinoamericana De Educación Infantil, 10(1), 45-57. Retrieved from
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Wuytack, J. & Palheiros, G. B. (1995). Audição Musical Activa – livro do professor e livro do aluno. Porto: Associação Wuytack de Pedagogia Musical.