Turn-taking play visits local schools

Lauren Hadley and Nina Fisher have developed and trialled a play communicating their research in turn-taking

Psychology researchers Lauren Hadley and Nina Fisher are highlighting the importance of turn-taking in language and music through an interactive play for primary pupils. 

Lauren Hadley

Nina Fisher

Interacting in language and music

This research explores the mental processing of language and music, and how people interact successfully in language and music.

Due to the similarities in their functions and organisation, language and music are often assumed to be processed similarly. However, little research has been carried out to compare whether people use the same skills to interact through language (i.e., in conversation) and through music (i.e., ensemble performance).

Lauren is co-investigator, and Nina is a researcher, on a Leverhulme funded project which aims to understand the mechanisms of turn-taking, comparing and contrasting interpersonal coordination in language and in music.

Leverhulme Trust

Learning to take turns 

Featuring actors and musicians, the play centres on a girl who is learning how to take turns in conversation so she can tell her family about the fairy she discovered in her cupboard! But she keeps getting her timing wrong and misses her opportunity to speak.

With the help of friendly musicians, her sister, and the audience, she overcomes her turn-taking difficulty to introduce Lionel to the world! 

Parents noticing how well their daughter has learnt to take turns!
Parents noticing how well their daughter has learnt to take turns!

Shows for pupils

Four performances have been staged so far, engaging hundreds of P3-P7 pupils in St David's R.C. Primary School and Pirniehall Primary School in Edinburgh. Following on from the positive feedback, Lauren and Nina hope to take the play to even more primary pupils.

I think if I could rate it out of 5 I would rate it 10

P5 pupilSt David's  R.C. Primary School

Walking back to class, all I could hear was 'that was awesome,' 'that was amazing'

Head of SchoolPirniehall Primary School

About Lauren Hadley and Nina Fisher

Dr Lauren Hadley is a Psychology Research Assistant in the School of PPLS, and also one of five Beltane Public Engagement Fellows from the University.

Psychology research assistant appointed Beltane Public Engagement Fellow

Her research interests lie in the field of music psychology and she is currently researching mental control and self-regulation in children.

Dr Nina Fisher is a Psychology Postdoctoral Research Assistant in the School of PPLS.

Her research interests include music and emotion, music and empathy, music and cognitive control, music, and language and turn-taking.