Cooperative vs. Competitive Learning

As soon as our two year olds can kick a ball, we begin searching for the nearest soccer class. Soccer is great! It involves teamwork, physicality, coordination and more. It also becomes highly competitive…and often sooner than we parents are ready for! While these competitive learning environments play an important role in early childhood, creative, cooperative learning experiences are crucial to our children’s sense of self. It is through the arts that children are acknowledged for what they create vs. what they achieve. Furthermore, while art is often a solo creative process, music serves as a cooperative creative experience. Music classes, especially in early childhood, provide an opportunity for children to create together and most uniquely and significantly, they more likely than not involve parent participation too. So rather than parents yelling and cheering from a sideline, parents are engaging and participating with their children in an environment where there is no right or wrong, no making the goal or missing the goal, just cooperative, creative, expression. After age five, most activities are drop-off, children are compared and evaluated by how well they perform. So while you can, find a class that involves you, facilitates educational and creative experiences together, and sets a stage for a lifelong love for music, the arts, and cooperation, collaboration, and togetherness.

Justine Chadly is the owner and director of In Harmony Music in the San Francisco Bay Area. For more information on our programming and our online curricula, visit:



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