Feb 21, 2011 3:18 PM by Jenise Fernandez

Study Shows Hand-Clapping and Singing Help Stimulate the Mind

If you're learning and you know it, clap your hands. Students at Opelousas Catholic School learned about nurtition and the human body by playing hand-clapping games and singing songs.
"Any subject can be taught through music,"said Johnette Downing, a musician and author who was at Opelousas Catholic School teaching songs and games to the students.
The kids may not realize it, but by singing and clapping they are improving their motor development and thinking abilites.
"When you're clapping you're crossing the midline of your body and that helps connect the right and left brain,"said Downing.
A recent study conducted by Ben Gurion University of the Negev in Israel found children who play hand-clapping games and sing are smarter than those that don't.
It also found that they have neater handwriting, write better, and make fewer spelling errors.
"Combining the rhythm and engaging the cerebellum, it may actually improve the remembering of whatever topic. It may, as according to the study, be helpful long term with reading, math, and social skills,"said Dr. John Flatt of Women's and Children's Hospital.
Opelousas Catholic holds this event every other year. They combine music and any science-related topic. This year the theme was the human body and students learned about the different organs and systems of the body while singing and playing games.
"It's also fun and the more you enjoy something the more you tend to be good at it,"said Dr. Flatt.




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