Dave Mastran, Co-founder of Quaver’s Marvelous World of Music & QuaverMusic.com, is back on the blog again. This week Dave makes a strong case for music as the most important subject taught to elementary students.
Take it away, Dave!
What is the greatest elementary school subject? What one subject do I believe makes the greatest impact on students above all others?
I don’t think the answer is English or math or even science.
I believe the greatest elementary school subject is music.
Well, first of all, music touches – and enhances – all the other subjects taught in elementary school. Let’s see how:
Music teaches simple counting, fractions (sixteenth notes, eighth notes) and how to read and interpret abstract symbols, such as crescendos or sharps and flats.
Reading, word meaning, rhyming and to some extent poetry are all taught through music. But most importantly, the expression of emotion, covered most effectively through the arts.
Music class presents folk songs from around the world, which provides an opportunity to teach about cultural differences, languages, and geography as well.
Students learn to move with the music and express themselves with their arms and legs.
Whether learning about Baroque, Classical, Impressionist, or Modern eras, the study of music involves students in our past.
Students can learn about sound waves – vibrations from lips and reeds, and bowing and plucking strings – and anatomy – how the ears, vocal chords, lungs and diaphragm work to create and hear sound.
Today’s students also encounter technology in the music classroom. They may interact with apps and games, electric guitars, keyboards, amplifiers, or microphones. These offer a variety of opportunities to learn how to use and enhance their learning through technology.
Finally, and importantly, music appeals to all students, regardless of age, race, religion, disability or ethnic origin. It involves students not only intellectually, but also physically and emotionally. If only one subject could be taught in elementary school, I believe it should be music!