Why Music Matters

Focus on STEM overshadows importance of Music Education:

http://michiganradio.org/post/focus-stem-overshadows-importance-music-education







Ten Lessons the Arts Teach

by Elliot Eisner, Stanford University

The arts teach children to make good judgments about qualitative relationships.
Unlike much of the curriculum in which correct answers and rules prevail, in the arts, it is judgment rather than rules that prevail.

The arts teach children that problems can have more than one solution
and that questions can have more than one answer.

The arts celebrate multiple perspectives.
One of the large lessons is that there are many ways to see and interpret the world.

The arts teach children that in complex forms of problem solving purposes are seldom fixed,
but change with circumstance and opportunity. Learning in the arts requires the ability and a willingness to surrender to the unanticipated possibilities of the work as it unfolds.

The arts make vivid the fact that neither words in their literal form nor numbers exhaust what we can know.
The limits of our language do not define the limits of our cognition.

The arts teach students that small differences can have large effects.
The arts traffic in subtleties.

The arts teach students to think through and within a material.
All art forms employ some means through which images become real.

The arts help children learn to say what cannot be said.
When children are invited to disclose what a work of art helps them feel, they must reach into their poetic capacities to find the words that will do the job.

The arts enable us to have experience we can have from no other source
and through such experience to discover the range and variety of what we are capable of feeling.

The arts’ position in the school curriculum symbolizes to the young
what adults believe is important.

Source: Learning and the Arts: Crossing Boundaries
Proceedings from an invitational meeting for education, arts and youth funders held January 12-14, 2000, Los Angeles.
Organized by Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, J. Paul Getty Trust, and The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.

Why Learn Music?

MUSIC IS A SCIENCE

It is exact, specific; and it demands exact acoustics. A conductor's full score is a chart,

a graph which indicates frequencies, intensities, volume changes, melody and harmony all

at once and with the most exact control of time.

MUSIC IS MATHEMATICAL

It is rhythmically based on the subdivisions of time into fractions which must be done

instantaneously, not worked out on paper.

MUSIC IS A FOREIGN LANGUAGE

Most of the terms are in ltalian, German, or French; and the notation is certainly not

English -- but a highly developed kind of shorthand that uses symbols to represent

ideas. The semantics of music is the most complete and universal language.

MUSIC IS HISTORY

Music usually reflects the environment and times of its creation, often even the

country and/or ethnic feeling.

MUSIC IS PHYSICAL EDUCATION

It requires fantastic coordination of fingers, hands, arms, lip, cheek, and facial muscles

in addition to extraordinary control of the diaphragm, back, abdominal and chest

muscles, which respond instantly to the sound to ear hears and the mind interprets.

MUSIC IS ALL THESE THINGS, BUT MOST OF ALL, MUSIC IS ART

It allows a human being to take these dry, technically difficult techniques and use

them to create emotion. That is one thing science cannot duplicate: humanism, feeling,

emotion, call it what you will.