First of all, I have a strong passion for music. I grew up listening to music and started playing instruments at a very young age. Music Education got me to where I am today. At first I started out just playing in a band for fun. But In high school, I started learning how to read notes and other parts of music theory. Without knowing the theory part of music, I would not be as good of a musician as I am today. Also, I feel lucky to have such a good music program in school because a lot of schools (esp. on the west coast) have to pay for extra-curricular activities. The reason I chose this topic is because I would like for disadvantaged schools to get the same benefits that I get in my school.
Around 50,000 years ago, African tribes would pray through song and dance. Once the Africans spread across the world, music became a European culture.
The first known song dates back to 4,000 years ago (before 500 AD). It was deciphered by Prof. Anne Draffkorn Kilmer (University of Calif. Berkley).
Music education is the field of study associated with the teaching and learning of music. Teachers also touch up on topics such as music appreciation and sensitivity. Music education is common in most nations because it is considered an important component of human culture and behavior.
Music students are usually taught by professional teachers with years of experience and a college degree. Students can also use music books to learn how to read and play music. People also learn about music by listening to Music education CDs with ear training and music theory examples. Friends and family who have an understanding of music can also teach students different musical topics.
The first singing school was created in Boston, Massachusetts in 1717 by Reverend Thomas Symmes. The purpose of the school was for students to improve their singing and music reading in the church. Schools like these spread through the U.S. colonies The first music textbook of the colonies was created by Reverend John Tufts which was called &#x201C;An Introduction to the Signing of Psalm Tunes using Non-Traditional Notation.&#x201D; Between 1700 and 1820 more than 375 music books were published.
More schools have adding music programs to their curriculum. There are different types of music programs, including Concert Band, Choir, and Orchestra. There are more colleges with music programs. There are even colleges specified for music (Berklee, Julliard). There now are plenty of musical oppurtunities when going to a music school. You can study music performance, business, education, therapy, sound recording etc.
Music performance is the main field of study for musicians. You practice your instrumental technicality with warm-up pieces and play different arrangements the band director hands out. Once you have practiced your arrangements, you perform in concerts to show what you have learned.
Music theory is a field of study that justifies how music works. It identifies patterns and structures found in composers&#x2019; techniques within genres, styles, or historical periods. There are many different elements of music, some include: pitch, rhythm, melody, harmony, scales and modes.
The Music Industry sells compositions, recording, and performances of music. Some jobs of the music industry includes: music publishers, record label executives, managers, and Artist & Repertoire representatives. The four major record labels that dominate the music industry are Sony Music Entertainment, Universal Music Group, Warner Music Group and EMI. Who who have smaller labels within their company. Since the year 2000, recorded music sales have dropped substantially due to downloading.
The main purpose of a music producer is to manage the work of an artist&#x2019; music. Some other things that a producer does is coaching the musicians, controlling the recording sessions, gathering the ideas of the product, and supervising the final production through mixing and mastering. A music producer could be compared to a director in the film industry, as his job is the create a vision for the style of music they would like to create. Some famous producers today are Rick Rubin, T-Bone Burnett, Timbaland, Dr. Dre and Quincy Jones.
So, why are all these fields of music important in our society? Because without these different studies of music, we will not have developed music into what it is today. Due to the economic crisis in America, schools have began to drop their music programs. Without music programs, students will not be able to study the theory and performance of music in school. Students could lose interest in music and leave their dreams of because in the industry behind. This is why we have to do something in order to keep music alive.
Because of the national economic recession, many schools cut their music programs completely. The No Child Left Behind Act made schools focus more on students becoming successful academically, and payed less attention to art programs. The state no longer chips in to help art programs, so parents have to pay for their child. Because of the recession, parents cannot afford for their child to attend music programs.
The No Child Left Behind Act is a law passed in 2001 by former President George W. Bush. The purpose is to improve a students academic performance. Its main focus is to improve students&#x2019; test scores and scoring abilities. The Act made school lose interest in their art programs and focus more on the students testing.
The No Child Left Behind Act focuses mainly on subjects like reading, writing and math. Parents are notified annually for a student&#x2019;s educational achievements. The Act requires schools to focus on every student, even the underprivileged. Like students with disabilities, low-income families, and non-English speakers.
Most states have been forced to make budget cuts on non-tested school subjects such as science, art and music, physical education and social studies. Teachers are pressured to teach more test-taking skills rather than a wide range of subjects. Higher standards have been set for new teachers. They are required to have one or more specific college degrees and pass a number of proficiency tests. The problem with these standards is that it is harder to find a teacher qualified for certain subjects which makes the shortage of teachers worse than it already is.
About 62 percent of districts in the U.S. increased their time on English and/or math subjects. Since 2002, those districts have had an average increase of 46% for English, 37% for math, and a 42% increase for both subjects combined. Also, 44% of districts have reported of cutting time from other subjects such as science, art and music, physical education, lunch and recess. The average cut time for these subjects is about 30 minutes a day. The graph is showing what people think about No Child Left Behind Act and whether districts leaders need to play a larger role in the community or not.
Due to the economic recession, less government funding for school programs has been climbing higher each year. Now, parents have become more involved with the music programs. They have created organizations like the Music Boosters to provide support for student and teacher musical activities, equipment, and events. But, the problem is that some schools and parents cannot afford everything they need for their music programs, so schools drop it to save money.
Music teachers instruct individuals on music performance, theory and appreciation. They can work full-time or part-time. They usually work at home, elementary or secondary schools, colleges, universities, or music conservatories.
Elementary or Secondary School teachers usually direct the school&#x2019;s choir, concert band, marching band, or orchestra. They teach students about the technical aspects of music, like music performance and theory. Private teachers usually give lessons to an individual or a group of people for a specific instrument. They also teach things like theory, performance, appreciation and other musical skills.
Some problems concerning music teachers are that there is less funding for the arts. Music programs are being cut from the curriculum so schools can focus on core subjects like English and math. There is less job opportunities for new music teachers because schools don&#x2019;t have the money to hire them and give them a salary. Some music teachers are also losing their jobs because of the school&#x2019;s budget.
This teacher&#x2019;s main focus is about the problems concerning the TAAS test and how it effected the local students, parents, and teachers. She says how she tried to get parents to boycott the test, and how she&#x2019;s complained to the principal of her daughter&#x2019;s school. Her daughter got straight A&#x2019;s on her report card but failed the TAAS test. The next year she had to drop out of band and take two English classes. The Texas music teacher believes that students cannot just focus on academics and testing, they need other programs like art, music and physical education.
Two elementary school teachers created an after school club called &#x201C;Music Makers&#x201D;. They selected the eight lowest performing and eight highest performing first graders to participate. In this club, the teachers used music to teach/enhance reading and math skills. The students would play with toy instruments and sing to learn about different reading and math topics. At the end of the year, the students&#x2019; Reading scores were a grade level proficiency and they achieved a substantial level of academic growth. The teachers are trying to prove that music can be a good way for students to learn while having fun.
The purpose of this program is to provide sustainable music programs for children regardless of their financial situation. The foundation brings new instruments to elementary and middle schools. It also commits to funding music teachers&#x2019; salaries, providing maintenance, supplies, and scheduling.
The Save The Music Program was founded in 1997 as a public affairs initiative of the VH1 network. Former head of the network, John Syke&#x2019;s found inspiration when he was &#x201C;principal for a day&#x201D; at the Brooklyn school PS 58 - The Carroll School. He noticed the school&#x2019;s great need for musical instruments and decided to dig deeper into the struggles of music education. He decided to create an organization to help schools in need.
Music shows a sense of teamwork and creativity within the student. Music enhances the students&#x2019; critical thinking skills. Studies show that music students tend to have better reading and math grades than most. 74% of employers agree than creativity is an important factor in the U.S. workplace. Music brings happiness and joy the both performers and listeners.
So what can you do to help keep music programs in schools? You can become active in school and district planning committees. Donate anything (instruments, money, etc.) to your school to give them support. Get your friends more involved with music and show interest in the schools&#x2019; music programs. Talk with your local community to gather supporters to show the importance of music in schools.
For my application, I wanted to prove that music students are very important in keeping the music culture alive. A lot of students in middle school drop out of band once they get to high school because it&#x2019;s &#x201C;too much work&#x201D; or just don&#x2019;t want to do it anymore. I would like for students to stay in band because it increases the chance of students going into the music field, which is diminishing. Also learning an instrument and how to read music can exercise your brain. It improves students&#x2019; math and reading skills.
For my application, I raised money for the Save The Music Foundation. At first, I talked to the High Schools&#x2019; Band about the program and asked if they would like to donate. Then I put up envelopes in the band room and my church to raise money. I raised over $300 to give to the Save the Music Program.
I set up guitar lessons for middle school students that are in the band. I wanted to show them that learning the guitar can be both fun and challenging. I taught them the basics like: how to hold the guitar, finger placement, notes, frets, and strings on the guitar, and how to read guitar music. The reason I did this was to not only keep them interested in the general subject of music, but keep them interested in playing an instrument because with less music students, schools will continue to drop their music programs.
I created a guitar lesson book for people who are just starting to learn the guitar. Basics of guitar: learning how to read notes, fingerings for chords and basic music theory. (Take them through the book).
I made a practice CD for the book. Used a multi-track recorder. Record more than one instrument. Recorded each page of music with the melody and chords. If a person gets stuck they can hear how the melody is supposed to be played or how the chords are supposed to sound. (Helped me) After I am finished recording, I took a flash drive and copied the music to GarageBand, then I exported it to iTunes and then made the CD. Each page of music would be a track number. (Go to iTunes and show them examples) The CD is about 30 minutes long (each track being about 1 and a half minutes). I made a CD because from my experience, a practice CD definitely helps you learn how to read a play music.
Music Education Madness helped me because it talked a lot about the No Child Left Behind Act and how it affected music and other art programs. It also had a lot of stories from music teachers and opinions from parents and students about the new music education policy. VH1 Save The Music helped me because a lot of my research and information from my slides came from them. They also talked about the decreasing music and art programs and what you can do to help them out.