Joyce O'Hara is a graduate of Hamilton Teacher's College, Ontario, Canada, and was a primary/grade school teacher for many years. Postgraduate studies in education were pursued in Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada, and St. Nicholas Montessori College, London, England.
For the past twenty-five years she has devoted herself to the teaching of music and is in great demand for her workshops on Song, Dance, and Percussion. For almost twenty years she was a lecturer in music at St. Nicholas Montessori College, Dun Laoghaire, Co. Dublin, Ireland. Her highly acclaimed recordings for children came about through her work with Montessori students and teaching music to children from three to twelve years of age.
Singer, Treasa Ní Cheannaigh, from Tuam, Co. Galway, accompanies herself on the guitar. She is a primary school teacher with many years experience as a performer on stage.
The songs are introduced by writer and broadcaster, Aidan O'Hara, Joyce’s husband. The words are clearly enunciated by Treasa and Aidan, and this adds considerably to the pleasure and ease of listening.
We all know how our feelings and emotions are affected by music, and even how it affects us physically: we are energised by it, we are uplifted by music, and it is so normal and natural. Even the smallest babies react to the rhythm and sound of music.
Through research and observation psychologists and educationists confirm that music is a powerful stimulus in many ways, not least in positively affecting children’s moods and sense of wellbeing. As a shared activity it plays a major role in helping children develop social skills. Music and song make learning more enjoyable and more interesting.
To be able to sing and perform for others and with others plays a huge role in making us feel good about ourselves. Small children take to singing quite naturally. They memorise nursery rhymes and children’s songs easily through hearing them over and over. Without knowing it they are learning new words. Their capacity for imagining and wonder is enhanced through the story in the song, and it is all so relaxed and enjoyable.