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The Orff Approach

Carl Orff

Carl Orff (1895-1982) was a German composer. In addition to his career as a composer, he developed an influential approach toward music education for children.

The Orff Approach is a "child-centered way of learning" music education that treats music as a basic system like language. It is often called "Elemental Music making" because the materials needed to teach students are "basic, natural, and close to a child’s world of thought and fantasy". Orff said:Playing with the Elements of Music,“Elemental music is never music alone,but combines with movement,dance and speech”.

Orff's approach principles

  • Start at the development level of the child
  • Always integrate movement speech rhythm and melody in every activities
  • Use material from the child’s own world(folk songs nursery rhymes poems chants and story)
  • Always encourage the children to create their own rhythms melodies speech patterns and dances.Creativity is the central core of the Orff approach to music education
  • Using native nursery rhymes, children's songs, musical instruments and folk tales as materials to promote native music.