Music is found in all human cultures worldwide. For many years now we have been made familiar with research pointing to the benefits of music for health and wellbeing across generations, and particularly for those suffering with dementia and the isolation associated with Alzheimer’s.
Recent research conducted by Oxford University in the UK has found that not only music in general, but more significantly singing, and specifically, singing in a group such as a choir, is also beneficial in a variety of ways.
Physiologically, for example, singing exercises the brain, stimulating cognitive processes and aiding memory while also improving breathing, posture and muscle tension. Participating in singing helps to sustain a healthy immune system with the reduction of the stress hormone cortisol and an associated boost in the Immunoglobulin A antibody, which is known to improve the immune function of mucous membranes.
Psychologically, singing, like music, has been shown to improve our sense of happiness and wellbeing while group singing also strengthens our sense of social connection with others. Creating and sustaining social bonds is critical in combatting loneliness and depression; conditions which are not confined to but are certainly prevalent among our elderly.
Aged Care Music Resources Green Book Series provides an invaluable tool for community singing groups, seniors choirs and leisure and lifestyle programs in aged care. The three components of this collection: The Green Book CD Collection; The Green Large Print Song Book; and the Green Large Print Song Book Music Edition, combine to deliver a comprehensive resource to cater for the growth in choirs and singing groups nationwide.
The need for this resource was identified to cater for the musical interests of the Baby Boomer generation as they become involved in Seniors’ activities, community singing groups, and move into retirement and aged care facilities. With this cohort in mind, we have compiled a collection of 200 popular tunes from the 1950s, ‘60s and 70s.
The Green Book CD collection provides the basis for hours of pleasurable listening and with its companion Large Print Song Book, singing along is easily facilitated. Further enhanced by the Green Large Print Song Book Music Edition, recently reprinted to include the bass clef in addition to the melody line and lyrics, the musical accompanist has a user-friendly version of the music at their fingertips.
Leaders of Community singing groups, seniors choirs, Senior Citizens Centres and aged care facilities alike, will appreciate the value of this collection, in providing a simple way to teach songs, facilitate sing-alongs, and provide music for movement, or background music to social activities.