06 October 2010

The Importance of Music Education

Some people regard music as exclusively for entertainment ,while others take it as a practical aid in praising and worship or promoting patriotism,or otherwise help the individuals to establish identity and social relationships. Very few people take it as a profession where they can earn a living through composing,playing ,dancing music on organised shows or marketing music products.
Baker(1984:16) says ,"Music is a language in its own right."Being a language music can be used to convey feelings ,mood,messages and emotions.Thus music is everything in the growth of human being .In support of the same sentiments ,Janet Mills(1991:24) states that,"music carries the whole daily life of a society and makes that music.
Bentley(1975:13)adds that ,"songs enable pupils to investigate past and present situations of society ." He goes on to say ,"songs involve the children's emotions and as a result pupils appreciate this." This implies, that songs appeal to the human mind.They broaden the contents of all subjects and reinforce concepts.
Bessie(1969:5)classifies the rationale of music under headings:
•As personal enrichment
•As identification
•As means of expression
She goes on to explain that music helps a person to grow morally ,spiritually ,emotionally ,intellectually as well as physically.This is also supported by Bentley(1975:15) who says "...music contributes to our life,...it makes a child an understanding listener and helps in developing the skillls and knowledge ." Through in a child will express himself/herself through music in every situation.
Music is an expression of feelings ,it expresses culture through dressing,dancing instruments and types of music .It plays an important role in facilitating extending understanding of appreciation of other people's culture.
Campbell (1991:78) puts,"... music education alone is a substantial body of literature on the development of listening ,discriminating ,creative and analytical thinking,conceptual understanding ,performance ,skills and effective response."
Muzambi (1995:9)concurs with the above opinion when he stated that ,"music is an organised sound ,it appeals to the sense of hearing which transmit messages to the whole body." This implies that the body reacts to music and expresses various emotions such as shading of tears ,if a sad memory is stirred by musical tune.
Teaching and learning of music is an ongoing process starting from birth until death.There are objectives behind the teaching and learning of music .The music framework for California Public School(1977:4-5) cited the purpose of teaching music as basically to:
♦Promote sensitivity to expressive qualities of music.
♦Encourage musical responsiveness involvement and discrimination.
♦Develop skills including aural activity and promote understanding of the nature, meaning and structure of music.
♦Promote awareness and understanding of music literature of various periods and forms,style and idioms that are characteristic of various national culture including our own.
♦Provide a sound base of musical experience which pupils can use in making intelligent judgement of musical value.
In support of the above idea Zondo(1994:11) comments that,"Realisation of musical objectives calls for a teacher to employ all skills necessary through the involvement of a media thouroughly prepared."
As I round up my literature reviews of the authorities I have stated ,one would say music is very essential as it conveys feelings ,moods ,messeges as well as emotions .A child will be able to express himself/herself clearly in every situation through listening to the messeges in different musical styles.
Implications to the teacher and teaching of music.From my observations I made in most primary schools in Zimbabwe , I had identified that children's poor performance is due to lack of teaching /learning media in music lessons, so teachers are recommended that:
♥Teaching /learning musical media should be relevant suiting the targeted group and musical instruments should be used in music lessons.
♥Teacher's training colleges should vigorously train student teachers on how to improvise prepare and use learning /teaching aids in music.Teachers must also learn to give clear instructions on how to use the instruments during the music lessons.
♥School and district level seminars should be done to equip teachers with knowledge of preparing and using instruments effectively.
♥Teachers should make use of resource persons who are specialists in music to make use of instruments effectively.
In conclusion as supported by various authorities above effective use of instruments make music lessons live and develop the whole child.Teachers should always make available all instruments relevant and suitable that they should encourage understanding on the part of the learner.

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