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A music education is profound on students because it provides a variety of lifelong remunerations; therefore, it should be encouraged and instilled in the school curriculum.
Why Students Should Study Music
Students should study music because it offers them the ability to express themselves and learn to work independently and with others as well as logical thinking, teamwork, perception, a sense of achievement, and an admiration for the arts.
Benefits of a Music Education
Individuals benefit from a music education through as it helps certain parts of the brain develop, along with IQ, reading level, and a sharper memory come with exposure to music. Learning to play an instrument can be compared to learning another language and can be challenging at times. Students have to be disciplined in order to master playing an instrument; it takes time and commitment which in turn sets standards of quality that enhances their desire for academic excellence.
How Music Education Helps Students
A music education allows students to express feelings and have a self-identity. Band and orchestra members are less likely to smoke, drink alcohol, or experiment with other drugs than other non-music kids. An education in music also allows students to bond with other members in their group who share common ideas, beliefs, and behaviors and to be included in multiple cliques, where they feel like they belong.
Music Teaches Lifelong Skills
Skills which are essential in the workforce and community are developed through music study. The arts also help stimulate economic activity by attracting tourists to events and therefore increasing the community's local tax base. Students involved in their music education program said music is what defines them because it helps them express themselves. A music education actually does what is said to be true about it
A Music Education: The Incomparable
What kind of an education do you want for your children? Are you satisfied with an education sufficient for them to graduate or do you want them to work at something to the point that it's as perfect as they can make it (Gill, Rogers, and Rogers, 2000)? A music education gives students discipline, strength, and potential along with the resources of teacher support and self assessment for every student to learn. These skills help students all throughout their lives, no matter what they do. The benefits of music education are profound on students; therefore, it should be encouraged in the school curriculum.
Why Students Should Study Music
Why should students study music and is there anything society could do to encourage all children to have the experience? Music offers students the ability to express themselves and learn to work independently and with others (Children's Music Workshop, 2012). Whether it is band or choir, students have to practice the music over and over by themselves to eventually be able to work with others in rehearsals and compose an outstanding performance. Because of the arts personal connection to mostly everything we want for our children and schools, they deserve a place in the curriculum. Studying music also teaches students, logical thinking, teamwork, perception, and admiration for the arts; plus, it is fun at the same time and gives students a sense of achievement which is priceless to parents and schools (Frisco School of Music, 2012).
In association, with the study: The Benefits of Arts Education: An Investigation of Causality and Individual Perceptions composed by Dr. Barbara Airulla, we also see similar benefits individuals receive from having an education in the arts. She asked respondents composed of both parents and non-parents whether they believe that education in the visual arts and music contributes to other academic success? (Such as higher grades or test scores in other subjects like math or science.) Of the 150 respondents, she received responses of 125 yes (93.98%), 8 no (6%), and 17 non-responses. In the second part to this question she also asked them to indicate one reason why they believe visual arts and music education contribute to academic success (Airulla, B. 2004). The following diagram indicates the responses she received:
Figure 1: Reasons why you believe education in visual arts and music contributes to other academic success. (Airulla, B., 2004).
Many of these responses are similar to the outcomes found through research and you can see that people truly believe a music education has a great impact on individuals. However, on the contrast to these previous studies and many more, some school principals, superintendents, school board officials, and teachers are still blinded by the valuable effects of music to a student's education.
Benefits of a Music Education
In turn, what benefits are gained through music and how can humans succeed from studying it? Thinking abilities grow, students are more engaged in what they study, and they learn from each other through music. The development of certain parts of the brain along with IQ, reading level, and a sharper memory come with exposure to music. Every time musicians perform, they have to modify the beat, tempo, phrases, pitch, mood, and musical technique. From these continuous challenges, the brain becomes incredibly skilled at multitasking (Children's Music Workshop, 2012). When the Princeton, New Jersey based College Entrance Examination Board looked at SAT scores of college-bound high school seniors, they discovered musicians of 6 years or more scored 57 points higher on the tests verbal section and 41 points higher in math than their non-art peers (Children's Music Workshop, 2012). A study shown by the Glen Burnie County School District in Maryland stated test scores of 223 fourth through sixth grade students both involved in and lacking music education showed no distinct difference. Those students involved within the music program showed no signs of increased test scores than their non-music peers (Corral, 1998). However, this study was conducted on children between fourth through sixth grade students who have not had enough musical experience in order to effectively enhance test scores; therefore, this information is irrelevant and cannot be used to determine the effect of music on its participants. In spring 2006, the Harris Interactive poll of high school principals noted a drastically higher class attendance of 93.3 percent and a 90.2 percent graduation rate among schools with music programs. Unlike their adversary, schools without music courses only obtain attendance of 84.9 percent among students and a graduation rate of 72.9 percent (NAfME, 2012). These are merely a few of the numerous successes of a music education.
Figure 2: Comparison of graduation and attendance rates among schools
with a music education vs. those without a music education.
Not only does music education make students smarter, it also teaches discipline and attentiveness. Learning to play an instrument can be compared to learning another language and can be challenging at times. Students have to be disciplined in order to master playing an instrument; it takes time and commitment to set out time each day to practice, practice, and practice some more (Petress, 2005). Musicians learn craftsmanship as they study how details are put together painstakingly and what constitutes good, as opposed to mediocre work. The National Education Longitundinal Study showed these standards of excellence have had an effect on the tremendous amounts of academic and honor awards students receive (Children's Music Workshop, 2012). School systems ought to demand music education as a new level of excellence and a rank of merit all parents and schools should want for children.
How Music Education Helps Students
Along with the previous benefits of a music education, music also allows students to express feelings and have a self-identity. Band and orchestra members are less likely to smoke, drink alcohol, or experiment with other drugs than other non-music kids (Frisco School of Music, 2012). A sense of achievement comes with music. Once students achieve their goal, the satisfaction they feel is priceless and is certainly something to be proud of. Music helps us find our self-identity and allows us to see into our secluded inner worlds by expressing which type(s) of music we enjoy. For this reason, group individuality through music is both broad and limited. An education in music may allow a student to be included in multiple cliques, as well as excluding them. The bonding of members in a group who share common ideas, beliefs, and behaviors is formed through this concept. Music also helps isolate and separate one clique from another. Risk taking through music performance teaches students to overcome fear and prevent it from becoming a problem later in life (Children's Music Workshop, 2012). Learning through music allows students to be themselves in their own way. Shouldn't every parent want this for their child?
Have you ever wondered how a child sees the world? A music education offers children the ability to observe the world differently. Cultural education is continually learned and encouraged through exhibition of the arts and humanities (NAfME, 2012). Students who study music learn to respect and have understanding towards people of other viewpoints, cultures, and customs. Studying music is like learning a second language in which most people speak. Many musicians have taken a piece of music and translated it into several languages and styles. It's through ideas like these, that people all around the world are introduced to something they normally would never participate in or listen to. Music cuts across racial, cultural, social, educational, and economical restrictions (Petress, 2005). It is important that in every education system, schools teach students about different ways of life, and not simply the one students live in.
Music Teaches Lifelong Skills
Not only does a music education help students throughout school, it teaches skills which are essential in the workforce and community. Increasingly compelling techniques established through an education in the arts are appealing to the management and aggressiveness of the nation's workforce (Children's Music Workshop, 2012). Common art departments of the creative workforce are multiplying at a rate of more than double the rest of the nation's workforce. Such units include painters, actors, photographers and authors. Within these departments are individuals employed in architecture, fashion design, film, video, music, and software development (NAfME, 2012). The arts also help stimulate economic activity by attracting tourists and increasing the community's local tax base (Children's Music Workshop, 2012). These are some of the many advantages music education offers students in the workforce and throughout their lifetime.
Students' viewpoints on how studying music helps them, is an important factor in schools choosing to require music in the curriculum. Members of New Milford's music program and Wagner's orchestra Pitt say their music skills have helped them in academics such as math and science. Based on neurological tests, Mr. Michael Pitt, chairman of the music department at Robert Wagner Middle School and president of the Music Education Association of New York City, says "it has been proven that students who have a hands-on experience in the arts achieve more detailed problem solving in academics than students who are introduced to computers at young age" (Gill et al., 2000). By an additional and innovative vocabulary and a more focused classroom, students have also learned to have patience in what they do (Rubin, 2007). Obviously, students enjoy music and like that it's something they can do recreationally, but music education is also a class to look forward to at school. It is different from the required classes because there are no tests and few dull moments where students sit there listening to the teacher. Students need this opportunity to take a break from the required core classes in which most of them dread.
New Milford's high school students involved in their music education program said music is what defines them. Music helps them express themselves and show others music is cool and not merely for geeks (Rubin, 2007). A music education actually does what is said to be true about it; test scores have improved and are continuing to progress, while music helps students find their self-image. An education in music also relieves stress on students, and broadens their horizons. Former President Bill Clinton states, "music is about communication, creativity, and cooperation, and by studying music in school, students have the opportunity to build on these skills, enrich their lives, and experience the world from a new perspective." This quote sums up the key points of why an education in music is beneficial to most people. We must proclaim and encourage a new approach for other students, parents, and schools find a way to appreciate music before it is too late (Children's Music Workshop, 2012).
An important conclusion to come out of this discussion is we as a society take music for granted. Human beings need to be educated with all types of education in order to achieve maximum human potential. By supporting this perspective, you could help place music in the core of the school curriculum. All students ought to have an opportunity to encounter and expand their talents in all educational systems. Schools need to keep and enforce the arts in education because they establish in students a lifestyle that last a lifetime.
In order to encourage music education in schools, I recommend that people do their best to inform the public and school administrators about the impacts a music education has on individuals. The more advocates we have to help support the perspective of establishing music education in the school curriculum the better chance individuals will have at succeeding in life. By sustaining this perspective we can greatly impact the lives of future generations for years to come.