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Please Help - Opinions needed for dissertation

Discussion in 'Personal' started by ncurtis89, Jan 8, 2019.

  1. ncurtis89

    ncurtis89 New commenter

    Hi, I am currently conducting research for an essay on the benefits of music on the whole education of a pupil. I was wondering if I could get some opinions on any of the following:

    How does music stimulate the imagination?
    How does music improve mental concentration?

    Any general opinions on the benefits of music education to a child's general education would be helpful and greatly appreciated.

    Many Thanks,

  2. Bedlam3

    Bedlam3 Star commenter

    I can't really answer your two questions but from my own experience my classes (primary school) always seem to enjoy sessions where we have music playing and sometimes it makes them quieter as they listen to it instead of talking. I use music during art lessons to help stimulate their imagination but whether it does or not I couldn't say. I just like to think it does.
  3. blazer

    blazer Star commenter

    I taught secondary science. I often used music as a starter as the class arrived. Something with a link (sometimes tenuous) with the topic of the lesson eg Elements song, Atomic (Blondie) or even Rammstein (studying metals)! Also during parctical sessions I would plug a flash drive with about 1600 tunes on it into the PC and use it as a juke box. Kids would take it in turns to choose songs to play in the background. Tunes were always my selection, they could not choose away from the list. I found that 50s rock and roll was popular, also singalong stuff like ABBA and the Monkees and bizarrely Dean Martin!
  4. racroesus

    racroesus Star commenter

    I can't listen to music and do other work at the same time. I think the Mozart effect has been somewhat debunked. I was asked by an art teacher to draw pictures conjured up by Holst's Planet Suite but my interpretations didn't fit with the planets. Music is marvellous, let's not make it utilitarian as an aid to the mundane. Remember Hardy's view of pure mathematics.
  5. Doitforfree

    Doitforfree Star commenter

    Music teaches you to concentrate. Learning an instrument teaches you that you need to practise and work hard to achieve, and that practice can be enormously beneficial. Playing in an orchestra or singing in a choir are co-operative activities and rely on listening and concetrating. Whether any of these translate into effects in the rest of education is debatable. Research showed that giving a music lesson to primary school children improved their maths more than giving them a maths lesson did.

    My youngest is a high achieving musician currently at conservatoire. He has grade 8 in three instruments and a diploma in one. He is also the laziest person I know. He ought to understand more than anyone how achievement is affected by how much work you put in, but he still attributes other people's academic success to cleverness rather than effort. It is a complete conundrum. It's as if he can't translate wjhat he knows from one area of life to another.

    If you want another anecdote, our foster daughter's eleven year old brother was at a school which was doing work with Opera North. As a result he was picked for Opera North's children's choir. He was a child who got into endless trouble at school, yet could knuckle down under the discipline of a top class choir and behave and learn. Maybe that says more about the benefits of old fashioned strictness than it does about music!
    ncurtis89 and Aquamarina1234 like this.
  6. Jamvic

    Jamvic Star commenter

    Neither can I. Some people need a quiet environment to be able to concentrate properly. I always felt sorry for pupils who were forced to work in classrooms where the teacher allowed ‘background’ music. I would not have coped well with this at all.
  7. florian gassmann

    florian gassmann Star commenter

    The best way by far is by practical involvement in music making. Instrumental lessons, singing in choirs, performing in bands and orchestras, taking part in staged musicals, participating in competitions.

    Sadly, the number of state schools in which these things are cultivated is diminishing fast, but those in which music is supported find that for many students music sows the seeds for life-long learning and enjoyment.
  8. Doitforfree

    Doitforfree Star commenter

    Research has shown that even people who think they work better with music playing actually don't. It would have driven me mad to have music played in the classroom.
  9. Scintillant

    Scintillant Star commenter

    Then why are surgeons allowed to listen to music (predominantly rock) while carrying out operations?

    Any issues would have been picked up rapidly and the practice would be stopped.
  10. racroesus

    racroesus Star commenter

    It does no harm?
  11. Scintillant

    Scintillant Star commenter

    Yes, there is no negative effect.
  12. racroesus

    racroesus Star commenter

    Although it would require research into ancillary staff and those surgeons who don't use it.
    Jamvic and EmanuelShadrack like this.
  13. Vince_Ulam

    Vince_Ulam Star commenter

    First show that music does either of these things within this context.
    EmanuelShadrack and Scintillant like this.
  14. Scintillant

    Scintillant Star commenter

    I'm sure it has been properly looked into
  15. BertieBassett2

    BertieBassett2 Star commenter

    I don't know if primary schools still do the 'Big Write' but we used to have a candle burning and quiet music in the background. It worked for a lot of the children - I mainly used classical - but any changes in tempo would set off a few of the 'sillies'!
    cassandramark2 likes this.
  16. racroesus

    racroesus Star commenter

    I don't know. It could be that if some members of the elite approve of it it gets accepted.
    Vince_Ulam likes this.
  17. racroesus

    racroesus Star commenter


    SEBREGIS Lead commenter

    I'm not convinced.

    I'm not aware of any evidence that seriously supports it having any effect on the brain. If students are using music 'while they revise' I suspect they are really just listening to music rather than working - but it must work for some.

    Its useful in lessons though. as it can influence pace and attitude, rather than merely concentration.
    When I want them to hurry up I use this one:

    When I want them to be 'emotionally engaged' (crying buckets) I would use this one:

    On the other hand, I have absolutely no doubt whatsoever that learning to play music has a positive effect on a students development - the dedication, self discipline and sense of accomplishment are like nothing else.

    On a personal note - as I'm writing this I'm listening to this, because it helps me calm down and focus at the end of a long and trying day:

    ncurtis89 likes this.
  19. maggie m

    maggie m Senior commenter

    I recall working with background music when I was at University. I think the main benefit was drowning out other peoples noise in halls. I sometimes use music in my science lessons, I have it on a very low volume while classss do practical work and turn it up fairly loud when I want to get their attention.
    blazer likes this.
  20. Doitforfree

    Doitforfree Star commenter

    I can't stand background music. It doesn't matter whether it's music I like or music I don't. It makes me really angry. I quite often leave shops without buying anything if they're playing music.

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