This interesting piece came to our attention through the Learning Rx newsletter. Ken Gibson, the developer of the very successful PACE program, is also the founder of Learning Rx.
A university in Israel conducted studies of hand-clapping songs which revealed a link between those activities and cognitive skills development in children, young adults, and university students. Practicing motor skills while singing and staying on beat helps develop auditory processing, visual processing, and attention. Children—particularly those in first through third grade—who participated had neater handwriting, better writing skills, and made fewer spelling errors, too! One researcher stated, "There's no doubt such activities train the brain and influence development in other areas." Even adults benefit by becoming more focused and less stressed. Who knew the songs weren't just for fun? Read Research Confirms Hand-Clapping Songs Improve Cognitive Skills