UNESCO-NIE Centre for Arts Research in Education (CARE)

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Name of Author: 
Chua, Genevieve Yung Ying
Thesis (M.A.) (Applied Psychology) National Institute of Education, Nanyang Technological University
Rose, Dennis
Year of completion: 
Country of Research Data: 

Warren (1984) has suggested that dance is able to combine the psychological and physical aspects of development, and to bring about changes in the individual's physical, social and personal well-being through movement. Dance has also been used in the treatment of eating disorders and anxiety. Fostering socialization, relaxation and emotional well-being in both young and old ,and in promoting communication and improving behaviour. Dance for special children has been used in education , behaviour and modification and child development. Children with intellectual disabilities face limitations in their verbal skills. Dance has the potential to assist in the development of these children. The present study, using both a pretext-posttest design and repeated measures design, examined the effects of dance on children's confidence, attention and intellectual development. The subjects were 20 Junior level pupils from a special school, who were randomly assigned to two intervention groups, dance and physical activity, which were introduced and carried out twice weekly over a period of eight weeks. The results indicated that movement activity appears to assist in some aspects of the development of children with intellectual disabilities. Both dance and physical activity improved the attention of the children. Dance also appeared to increase their confidence. No significant gains were found in intellectual development for both groups. Some implications of the study and directions for future research are discussed

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