Music is a massive part of peoples lives all over the world – Whether you are a singer, musician, or just someone that listens to music or radio regularly.
For anybody in the three categories above then the education/desire in music must have come from somewhere whether it was school, where you live, family or friends. It is often speculated that music does not play a substantial enough part in education, particularly when compared with the visual arts, despite its importance in educational development.
Over the past few years, there is no doubt that music has played a much bigger role in schools in both primary and secondary education and then also in college and universities. The extra-curricular activities offered by secondary schools at the current time are arguably the most varied they have ever been, and music plays a large part in the scheme of things, but the question is, do teachers/activity leaders and parents promote and encourage pupils enough to take part in music? Research has provided us with several different answers to this question. One study was based on evidence from inspections of 90 primary and 90 secondary schools from 2008 to 2011. In primary schools, one in three girls took part in extra music activities, compared with one in seven boys and in secondary schools only 14% of pupils took either extra singing or instrument lessons.
Another argument which has been brought up regularly is the amount of music actually played in music lessons especially in secondary education. The research stated that in some lessons, teachers or pupils did not play or sing a single note. According to reports, too much use was made of non-musical activities such as writing without any reference to musical sound. Too much time was spent talking about tasks without teachers actually demonstrating what was required musically, or allowing the pupils to get on with their music making.
Music is very important in early educational development and has a positive influence on children in pre-education and primary education. It has even been established that music affects the shape and development of the brain more noticeably than any other subject, including Maths. Children seem to experience much pleasure and joy listening to music, making music and moving to music. Research has shown that children who are actively involved with music (who play it or sing it regularly):
– Do better in reading and math when they start school
– Are better able to focus and control their bodies
– Play better with others and have higher self-esteem
Music education is also very important in secondary education, college and university as it provides great preparation for other academic areas. Taking part in different extra-curricular activities can also reduce stress, improve musical ability and is also a great way of meeting new people and learning in a less rigid context.
Music is academic – Research states that music trains the brain for higher thinking and enhances academic performance.
Music is healthy– Learning to sing and keep rhythm improves coordination and the air and wind power necessary to blow a flute, trumpet or saxophone promotes a healthy body.
Music is for life – Most people can’t play rugby, or football at 70 or 80 years of age but they can sing. And they can play piano or some other instrument. Music is a gift you can give your child that will last their entire lives.