link to paper HERE
HERE you will find the new 2011 Lobby Kit for more music in Australian schools. The current version (just uploaded) has no photos … look out for the pictorial version, coming soon.
NOW is the time to lobby school Principals and Parent/Teacher Committees to get MORE and meaningful music into your school. Use the new Lobby Kit for ideas, statistics, models, quotes and inspiration.
Victoria is looking for 25 schools to specialise in a particular field. Let’s hope some of them become MUSIC specialists
In September 2011, NAMM created an 8-page “music education advocacy” lift-out included for the Washington Post!
Listen to the ABC (Adelaide) radio interview here blogs.abc.net.au/sa/2012/08/a-musical-education-is-never-wasted.html
ABC Keys to Music – listen to a 4-part series of audio podcasts from May 2009. Richard Gill and Graham Abbott discuss the importance of quality school Music Education for all Australian children.
(Scroll down the webpage to the heading “Music Education Series”)
MCA Nov 2012 ADVOCACY ARGUMENTS This summary of Music Education advocacy is a powerful tool for persuading schools, politicians and parents to get more MUSIC into more Australian schools. It includes 20 reasons why school music is essential for ALL students, as well as strategies to make positive change.
Here you will find papers issued by the Music Council of Australia relating to the Australian music industry and music education.
You can view the animation at anz.whymusicmatters.org
The 'Music Matters' campaign has produced an animation inspired by this year's MCUI song, "Different People (Stand Together)". The animation follows the song's evolution, from writing and recording, to the performance by 600,000 school children on 1 November 2012. The animation was designed by Motionlab, a Sydney-based animation studio led by Luke Heise and Aaron Bartlett.
"Being part of this project has been a great experience for the team here at Motionlab. Being lovers of music ourselves, we're proud to get behind a project that supports the future of young Australian musicians," says Luke.
Originating in the UK in 2010, the Music Matters campaign is a collective of people across the music community, including artists, songwriters, labels, managers, publishers and music stores, formed to remind listeners of the value and significance of music, explains MCA's new Board member, Catherine Gerrard, who is a member of the Music Matters Steering Committee and Chair of the Australasian Music Publishers' Association.
"The Music Matters campaign is a fresh and innovative project designed to reawaken our connection to the value of music. The idea for Music Matters and Music: Count Us In to collaborate was warmly embraced from the outset. It makes sense: two real-life examples of the importance of music," she says.
Speaking of arts education, Ma explained that experts say there are four qualities needed in students and inside the current workforce: collaborative, flexible, imaginative, and innovative.
Ma said, “We know that our present educational system encourages knowledge acquisition and critical thinking, but what about these other qualities? How do we develop them?” He thinks the answers are in the arts through its integration into the entire school curricula.
CONCLUSION: “So, just in case the premise that music alters our visual perception proves true in future studies and in more real world situations the next time you hit PLAY, choose wisely. Your selection just might make the difference between whether you see yourself walking on sunshine or want to see the sun blotted out of the sky.”
THIS article in the Canberra times includes an awesome photo of nearly 2000 kids singing outside Parliament House, Canberra.
DO all children have the ability to be musical? Read all about it!
CALLING ALL GUITARISTS, RECORDER PLAYERS, UKULELE-ISTS…
(and flutes, and violins, and clarinets, and saxophones, and bass guitars, and cellos, and marimbas, and percussion… and any other instrument you like)
Do you play an instrument? Would you like to join a band? Come to ArtPlay in the heart of Melbourne on Sunday 11 November to help us form the biggest band ArtPlay has ever seen or heard!
The event is ‘Jump on the Bandwagon’ and the aim is to see how many musicians – all ages, all playing together – it takes to fill ArtPlay with music. In the course of an hour we will create a brand new piece of music, with help from some of Melbourne’s most inspiring and innovative musicians from the jazz, classical and rock music worlds.
‘Jump on the Bandwagon’ is a Big Jam for the whole family, and everyone is invited – mums, dads, brothers and sisters, grandparents, cousins, aunts, uncles – and anyone else! You can be any age and of any level of musical experience. More experienced players will learn new music, invent riffs and rhythms, improvise a solo, and work alongside musicians from the MSO, the Australian Art Orchestra, and Melbourne’s diverse freelance scene. First-timers will have the unforgettable experience of being part of a large and tight ensemble – like an orchestra but with a few more electric guitars and a lot more percussion.
BYO instrument or play one of ours on the day.
Jump on the Bandwagon
Sunday 11 November
ArtPlay (Birrarung Marr, behind Federation Square)
11am-12noon and 2pm-3pm (choose one session or come to both – no two sessions are the same)
$10 per family
Bookings – ArtPlay, 96647900
Created and led by Gillian Howell, leader of Big Jams for Melbourne International Jazz Festival, Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, City of Manningham, and others.
ArtPlay is a children’s arts centre in the City of Melbourne. They run regular learning exchange sessions for adults about working in the arts with children.
Their next session, on September 24th, is in collaboration with the Music Outback Foundation. The topic is “Engaging with Children and Communities Through Music”. This is the booking and information link:
22nd March 2011 – Peter Garrett Media Release
Study: Art Appreciation Boosts Stroke Recovery
HuffPost Healthy Living, 3/16/12
“An appreciation for the arts could be a boon to stroke survivors, a new study suggests. Research presented at the 12th Annual Spring Meeting on Cardiovascular Nursing shows appreciating art increases quality of life for stroke survivors, and stroke patients who find joy in music, theater, and painting recover better than those who don’t…Researchers conducted their study on 192 stroke survivors with an average age of 70. The study participants were asked whether they were art lovers or not. Then, the researchers compared the quality of life between those who said they liked art and those who said they didn’t like it. The researchers found that the ones who reported liking art were also in better health than those who reported the opposite—they had an easier time walking, were more energetic and less depressed, and felt happier and less anxious.”
Check out this six minute video with kids from Brooklyn Theatre Arts High School responding to the statement: “The Arts are extra-curricular and disposable.”
Please share this blog and video so that together we can bring national attention to the vital inclusion of the arts in education and change the perception that the arts are “optional,” “extra” or “fluff.”
Available for purchase is this 1999 research paper by ASME.
A research project conducted through ACER with input from John O’Toole, very much advocating the importance of The Arts in education (and part of the National Curriculum).
Moorambilla Voices and the Moorambilla Festival has won the inaugural NSW State award for excellence for an organisation at the 2011 APRA/AMCOS Australian Music Centre Art Music Awards at a Gala Event held in Sydney.
The event held at the Sydney Theatre, Walsh Bay on Tuesday May 3rd honoured winners across nine national categories and seven State awards, spanning performance, composition, outstanding contributions to Australian music by individuals and organisations, music education and regional music. Julian Morrow of ABC TV’s The Chaser hosted the Awards.
In New South Wales, the State Award honoured Excellence by an Organisation – “Over the past five years Moorambilla Voices and the associated festival event held in Coonamble, has given hundreds of children from regional and remote New South Wales the opportunity to take part in the festival and participate in music workshops in their local areas.”
This is truly an extraordinary achievement for such a small arts organization deeply committed to equity and musical excellence whilst serving the most remote communities in NSW.
For more information on the choirs of Moorambilla Voices and the Festival itself visit www.moorambilla.com
“Can music soothe the savage sixth grader? Perhaps, according to a first-of-its-kind study from Israel, which finds that gentle melodies may help deter schoolyard bullying.”
Go to resource: Beethoven or Brittany? The great divide in music education by Associate Professor Robert Walker, UNSW, is a discussion on the current music education crisis in Australian schools. Read more…
Read the article HERE.
“A music-rich experience for children of singing, listening and moving is really bringing a very serious benefit to children as they progress into more formal learning,”
Read the article HERE (www.pbs.org)
“According to the Children’s Music Workshop, the effect of music education on language development can be seen in the brain. “Recent studies have clearly indicated that musical training physically develops the part of the left side of the brain known to be involved with processing language, and can actually wire the brain’s circuits in specific ways. Linking familiar songs to new information can also help imprint information on young minds,” the group claims.“
Technology use in the classroom attracts political interest … but this article suggests that “technology in music” should be used to promote creativity. Read more …
Download the US advocacy booklet here: http://advocacy.nafme.org/files/2012/03/benefits_of_music.pdf
UK Education secretary pledges 82.5 million pounds for Music Education (Feb 2011)
Please help spread the word about our Australian national Choirs survey. This is the next in our series of grassroots research projects taking a close look at a particular aspect of Australia's musical life. The survey is here (http://musicincommunities.org.au/programs/research-surveys)
Results of our community orchestras survey here (http://musicincommunities.org.au/research/research/509)
HERE is a link to an Open University course on using music to aid children in multiple ways.
Use the 3 main notes from the chorus of this year’s MUSIC: COUNT US IN program song “We’ve Got the Music” to create a 3-tone drum melody.
(1) Group your classroom drums or classroom percussion or junk percussion into three different groups (high, middle and low)
(2) Allocate the lowest drums to B-flat, the middle drums to C and the highest drums to E-flat.
(3) Re-create the chorus melody on 3 different drums: “Get on your feet, feel your heartbeat, we’ve got the music. We’re not too proud to sing it out loud, we’re not afraid to use it.”
Try the activity aurally, playing along with the MP3 found at www.musiccountusin.org.au
(4) Write the drum tune on the board using letters: L = low drums, M = medium drums, H = high drums
LM LM L MM M M M LH M
ML M M ML LM M MMMM LH M
(5) If your school has signed up for “Music: Count Us In”, then you can access the free backing-track (‘For Teachers’ section) and play the drum melody along with the chorus.
This lesson was inspired by “Izo Beat” from Islington Public School
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oq74FePwu6E Show this YouTube clip to students, and make a list of music-related jobs in our society.
Dear Counters In
First of all, thank you! We’ve officially passed the 2000 schools mark, so this is the biggest year yet:
The above speech by Hon Peter Garrett was delivered on 12 April, 2012.
A 3 minute documentary showing the ‘making of’ Somewhere Over the Rainbow – a track by Sandy Hook students to help keep the memories of loved ones alive. Music therapy in many ways.
Consultation for the Draft Australian Curriculum: The Arts Foundation – Year 10
Presented by the School Music Action Group
Date: Thursday August 16, 2012
Time: 5.00pm- 7.00pm
Presenter: Kim Waldock
Venue: Iwaki Auditorium, Southbank
An opportunity to hear Kim Waldock, member of the advisory panel for the Draft Australian Curriculum: The Arts Foundation – Year 10, and discuss the consultation questions and make comments on the draft.
There is no charge for this event.
Bookings (online only – click on link below):
Download a PDF copy of the draft curriculum:
Download a printable version of the consultation questions from this URL:
Melbourne Symphony Orchestra would like to invite teachers attending the Australian Curriculum Consultation on Thursday 16 August in Iwaki Auditorium the opportunity to enjoy anexclusive ticket offer of 1X B-Reserve ticket for $75* to the Orchestra’s Act 2 performance of Beethoven and Wagner at the newly refurbished Hamer Hall, which will take place following the meeting, at 8pm.
*Regular price $109. Conditions Apply as follows:
I am donating a set of classroom untuned percussion … who else wants to donate simple instruments, CDs, classroom music resources, CD player, etc for a Tasmanian school that has lost it all to fires? The kids will REALLY need LOTS of music when they start school later this month. Cheers and thanks. More details HERE.
Read the article HERE.
TIME: This year’s performance time is Thursday 1st November, at 12.30pm AEDT (It will be 9.30am in the West).
For all teachers who have signed up (free) for MCUI 2012, there is now access to Music Pods – FREE short video segments to help you teach the song View a sample HERE.
A UK education program which trains primary school students to lead singing games in the playground – with cross-curricular results!
Exciting news for Music Education in Australia to be announced Monday 30 April, 2012!!!!!
READ HERE for information on the winners of 2011 Flame Awards – inspiring Australian school music programs. You can read more detailed summaries on the More Music Toolkit www.moremusictoolkit.org.au/faq-case-studies/case-studies
Music Forum 18.4 (August 2012 edition) is now online. It contains a special supplement on careers and tertiary study in music and, for a limited time, it is available to all schools in Australia, regardless of whether they receive the paper version. Please can you pass this information on to the schools and teachers in your jurisdiction or membership. It is of special interest to secondary students, their music teachers, and careers advisors.
They can find it at www.musicforum.org.au
The magazine is password protected. ID and password are both schoolmusic and access will be free until October 31.
Also for a limited time, we are offering a special discounted membership of the Music Council of Australia to school teachers and schools. Membership for addresses within Australia includes our quarterly print magazine, Music Forum, and access to the online version. Normal fee is $59. The discount for the joining year is a special offer, until October 31 only, of $39.
They can get the discount by joining online: Go to www.mca.org.au, click on JOIN MCA and then BECOME A MEMBER. Sign up as a NEW MEMBER. Then go to the bottom of the page to the DISCOUNT box. In the Coupon box, enter the code schoolmusic then follow through as instructed.
Alternatively they can join by mail, phone or fax as is made possible on the online site. Or they can phone 03 9507 2315.
One Song. One Day. Your School, More Music.
Thursday September 1, 11.30 am
Have you registered you school for Music. Count Us In yet? Visit the websitewww.musiccountusin.org.au <http://www.musiccountusin.org.au/> to register and access recordings of the song as well as FREE choral, band and classroom arrangements!
FREE teacher workshops will run early next term to introduce teachers to the song and all of resources and support material available.
Geelong, Mt Waverley, Bendigo, Swan Hill, South Gippsland,
Mornington Peninsula, Mitcham, Mildura, Cheltenham,
South Melbourne, Lilydale, Caulfield, Carlton,
Ivanhoe and Wangaratta
For details visit the aMuse website: http://www.amuse.vic.edu.au <http://www.amuse.vic.edu.au/>
Order FREE teaching kits for your school
by emailing Sue Arney MCUI@amuse.vic.edu.au <mailto:MCUI@amuse.vic.edu.au>
To download ‘We’ve Got The Music’, and to register your school, go to www.musiccountusin.org.au<http://www.musiccountusin.org.au/> or check out the wiki http://musiccountusin2011.wikispaces.com<http://musiccountusin2011.wikispaces.com/>
This is a fun way to learn / teach the Music: Count Us In song for 2011 (We’ve Got the Music). In fact, the song will teach itself, all ready for the massed-music-making MCUI event on 1st September, 2011.
If you don’t yet have a free login, and have registered for Music: Count Us In, please send an email to email@example.com requesting a Jozzbeat login.
BAM Radio Network offers free podcasts on Music education.
10 great TED videos (free) re. music education
We would like to invite you to host a FREE Music Count Us In/The Singing Classroom workshop at your school during September or October.
Here’s a final reminder of the opportunity to have a workshop in your school.
Bookings are filling fast – we already have more than last year!
Please send an expression of interest asap if you are interested.
The workshops will be 1.5 half hours long, run after school and open to all of your staff as well as other teachers in your area. Each participant will receive a resource booklet packed with useful songs, action songs, games and composition ideas, which includes this year’s MCUI song – and a CD!
This year’s workshops will be delivered by Susie Davies-Splitter and Sue Arney.
Below is a list of dates that we are available to come to your school/venue to run a workshop. All dates are open – we have indicated dates which would be best for us to come to country areas, however everything is negotiable and we are happy to discuss options.
Please let me know asap if you would like to book one of the dates below to host a workshop in your school.
Sue Arney firstname.lastname@example.org
Association of Music Educators
Wednesday 19 (country)
Thursday 20 (country)
Monday 8 (country)
Monday 22 (country)
While working with Cambodian organisation “Tiny Toones”, Romi has watched young people throughout the Cambodia tackle drug issues through the power of music and dance.
Listen to the Connect Asia interview and find out how her work as an AVI volunteer and Tiny Toones is having an impact on young people in Cambodia.
We are working hard to secure repeat funding for MCUI 2012 … if it proceeds again, it will be Thusrday 6th Sept, 2012.
Join with us in crossing fingers re. repeat support from the Australian Government.
A great music advocacy speech from the Hon Peter Garrett MP (9 March, 2012).
Read the inspiring article here: http://www.business2community.com/social-media/instruments-for-peace-how-social-media-can-amplify-the-music-of-peace-0465562 Discuss with your class how 1st world countries can help 3rd world countries to access music.
This article describes a new global awareness of the need for all global citizens to have access to instruments.
Read the article here – it is adapted from Imperfect Harmony: Finding Happiness While Singing With Others by Stacy Horn.
How does one find authentic creativity? In his last talk before passing away, Malcolm McLaren tells remarkable stories from his own life, from failing school to managing the Sex Pistols. He argues that we’re living in a karaoke culture, with false promises of instant success, and that messiness and failure are the key to true learning.
The members of the Orchestre Symphonique Kimbanguiste – the world’s only all-black orchestra – are self-taught and started out playing homemade instruments. Now the band’s founder is to be given a major international accolade.
Read the SMH article here, which refers to the Song Room, research by Educational Transformations, and Music: Count Us In.
A US article on how beneficial the Arts are to students with learning challenges.
Is your school still buzzing after last week’s HUGE music-making session? Now is the time to apply for musical professional learning funding for 2013. Learn the guitar or ukulele. Join a community choir. Enrol in an Orff or Kodaly course (Primary classroom music pedagogy). Enquire about Musical Futures (Middle School). Subscribe to online resources through Jozzbeat or Musica Viva. Register for ECCPA (Early Childhood Music). Investigate MEP (Canberra). Book the Singing Classroom (Vic). Browse the More Music Toolkit … or email email@example.com for some more ideas.
Advocacy for Music Education
It often takes research outside music education to understand the reasons why music is pivotal to education. When one advocates for music education, one seeks that which music is and does for people, its purposes – not just students, but all people, because music is ubiquitous – there is no community on planet earth that does not engage in musical activity. One has to ask why, what it is that music ‘does’ for humans?
Stefanakis (2003) addresses this question through a literature review across a range of disciplines from neuroscience to philosophy.
This US article describes silent lunchtimes enhances by live musicians!
Yet another reason to have a great music program at your school – making music together increases kids’ empathy towards one another. Click the link above to read the article.
Go to resource: Making the Progression: Report of the National Music Workshop, published 2007, follows on from the National Review of School Music Education. Read more…
Kids who learned fractions through a music-based curriculum outperformed peers in traditional math classes.
Click HERE to see more about the publication …
"Academic music: music instruction to engage third-grade students in learning basic fraction concepts"
Knowledge Base – a searchable treasure chest of articles and information on all topics to do with the Music Sector in Australia. Use the search bottom in the far left column to search (ie. type ‘education’ in the search box).
Music-related topics include education & training, copyright, funding, venues, research and information services.
HERE IS THE ANNUAL REPORT OF THE MUSIC COUNCIL OF AUSTRALIA.
If you'd like to become an MCA member, you can join at www.mca.org.au by clicking on "Join MCA" on the menu bar.
At 11.30am on September 7 last year, over 570,000 children from 1977 schools across Australia sang a song. The song was commissioned, arranged, recorded and distributed under the MCA’s Music: Count Us In project. It is the biggest musical event in the country by far and it has had enormous benefits for music education in schools. The majority of the participating schools become so enthused that they divert more resources into their music programs. It has been a cliff-hanger this year while we waited to discover whether the Federal government would fund Music: Count Us In again. Given the budget squeeze going on all around us, we were becoming gloomy. But last week we were told we had funding. A few days later, we were told we have it for four years! MCA is over the moon about this because for the first time, we know we will be able to evolve the program to take advantage of things already achieved and changes in the surrounding society. And we won’t have to hang around cliffs for a while. MCA thanks Minister for Education Peter Garrett, whose commitment to arts education is clear. —o— A number of important government reviews have just been published. Let’s stay with education for a moment. The Productivity Commission released its report into the School Workforce. We are extremely unhappy that in this 200 page document, the words ‘arts’ and ‘music’ appear only once – and the words ‘dance’, ‘drama’, ‘media arts’ and ‘visual arts’, the other arts subjects included in the national curriculum, do not appear at all. Is this because the report skirts discussion of subject disciplines? No, not at all. For instance, there are 150 mentions of ‘mathematics’ /‘numeracy’. Why is this important? MCA members know that the biggest obstacle to music education in primary schools is that the classroom teachers have been given almost no music education. When the Australian Curriculum in music is ready to be taught, the teachers will not be ready to teach it. For music, unless teachers are trained, nothing will change and most public primary schools in the country will have no real music education program – unless the parents are paying for it. We might have expected a study of workforce competency to have noted this – especially since the MCA submission spelled it out in short words. The Productivity Commission also published a Report on the Early Childhood Education Workforce. Negligible mention of music there, too, despite a first submission from MCA pointing out the problems and a second one pointing out the Commission’s omissions in its first draft. MCA is writing a letter to the responsible Federal ministers, pointing out that it is official policy of every government in the country that all children should have an arts education and asking whether the Commonwealth will accept and endorse the Productivity Commission report or require it to report again after reviewing the situation of the schools workforce vis-à-vis arts education. Every university music school in the country loses money. The minimum program they can offer with any self-respect requires more funds than they receive from the Commonwealth. The recent Higher Education Base Funding Review recognised the problem, observed the need for more funds, and then in a most peculiar way, failed to recommend them. All of these schools survive only because their universities find some way to cross-subsidise them. This all came home to roost late last week at the ANU, which itself is deeply in debt. The Vice-Chancellor announced effectively that the School of Music would no longer be subsidised by the university and would have to live within its budget. The effect is to impose very serious cuts on the Faculty, the program and the standards. There is absolutely no point in a music school of low standards attempting to train music professionals. The students, teachers and indeed, the City, are devastated. —o— We heard Kimbra perform at the APRA Awards last year. The arrangement was special to the event and probably not what we will ever hear on a recording by a pop goddess. It was interesting, complicated and inventive. Now she and Dutch-Australian artist Gotye are high in the charts in the US. Well, he is at the very top, and has just made a world record number of digital sales in the first three weeks of a release – 400,000. (How much income will he receive for that? $7.53?) The money Australia makes from export royalties on its overseas sales has varied between approximately $40m to $70m over the last decade. (Australia usually pays royalties of around $230m on the music it imports. That’s a bit of a sad story.) The export income can be influenced enormously by a single international hit. It will be interesting to see the effects of Gotye and Kimbra and a couple of others who are doing well at the moment. Might be a record year no pun intended. —o— MCA held its Music and Media Symposium on April 19. One of the things agreed by everyone present (a few with reservations) was that it is essential to retain the Australian music content regulations that oblige commercial radio to broadcast some minimum amount of Australian music. The fear is that without the regulation, Australian music would virtually disappear from commercial radio, and it certainly is not without basis. The Federal government’s Convergence Review had flown a kite: that since these regulations could not be imposed on online music, they should not be imposed either on terrestrial radio. This caused anxiety in the music industry. The Convergence Review has reported and recommended that the quotas be retained and indeed, extended to digital-only radio. Commercial radio will be very unhappy. The music industry is delighted. It should be said, however, that the industry is very keen on a rapprochement with radio. It does not enjoy this polarisation. These are only the recommendations of a review. They don’t have any reality until they are adopted by the government. —o— The Symposium provided an opportunity for participants to voice their desire once again for a national body for the commercial music industry. MCA already does a lot of work for industry interests (alongside its work in music education, community music development and the non-profit music sector). There is advantage in an organisation where all of these interests can be supported but also can speak to each other. As it happened, days later, the Contemporary Music Working Group, an informal group that for 10 years had attempted without success to get government support for the music industry, met to consider its future. (The problems did not lie with CMWG but with governments.) The MCA offered to serve as CMWG’S convenor and secretariat. CMWG would be a largely autonomous body within MCA, along similar lines to the Australian Youth Music Council. The offer was warmly welcomed and creates a situation where there is some assurance of continuity and the opportunity for effectiveness and evolution. MCA is delighted. —o— The nation’s Arts Ministers met and agreed to create a special fund for the big performing arts companies supported by the Australia Council Major Performing Arts Board. The companies would apply for funds for activities that could be seen as demonstrating ‘excellence’ – a word so far undefined in this context, as is the amount and timing of the fund. ArtsPeak is an ad hoc alliance of 31 national arts organisations representing all art forms. MCA has signed a letter from ArtsPeak to the Federal Arts Minister saying that while ArtsPeak commends the proposed extra funding for the majors, the small to medium arts organisations and individual artists have long languished, and have as great a claim to additional funding. It proposes an increase of 25% in funds over four years with a first instalment of 10% immediately. Well, it’s worth a go… (Yours truly invented the ArtsPeak name at its inception around 1999. It could also have been written ArtSpeak.) —o— ArtsPeak has also written to decry the delay in the release of the very long-awaited National Cultural Policy. It seems slightly uncertain, actually, whether it will be delayed. There are varying reports and the Office of the Arts will not give a date. It has been a major effort to pull this thing together. There were 400 submissions to the Minister. MCA put in a 110-page submission, covering everything that blows, bows, bangs, chirrups or burps – in retrospect, perhaps more than was needed though it seemed a good idea at the time. (You can read it on the MCA website under ADVOCACY. See if it includes your special interest.) Arts people seem to be taking the National Cultural Policy very seriously. Maybe it’s because there is that rare feeling that government, for this moment in history, is taking us seriously. Maybe there is hope of a vision for the arts, endorsed by the most powerful body in the land. There is, however, a big problem of timing. Not just whether the NCP is released in May or September, but whether Mr Crean is Minister for long enough to implement it. And if as seems likely, he is not, what attitude will the Coalition take? Will it throw the thing out just because it was a Labor idea? One would hope not. —o— Remember the UNESCO Convention for the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions? Of course you don’t. Who could remember such a title without special remuneration? Anyway, MCA had a big role in causing Australia to ratify it. So when we discovered that Kate Lundy had been appointed as the newly created category, Minister for Multiculturalism, we wrote to ask what the government is doing to implement its requirements and recommendations. She has written back saying that [as is required by the Convention] the government is preparing a report of relevant activities, which it will publish. That could be quite useful in showing where multicultural groups might ally with governments. MCA has written back saying that is very good, but having accounted for the status quo, does the government intend to further implement Convention proposals for support to diverse cultural activities. We’ll keep you posted. —o— We finish with an interesting story from the USA. Sarah Jessica Parker, Kerry Washington and Forest Whitaker are adopting some of the nation's worst-performing schools and have just pledged to help the Obama administration turn them around by integrating arts education. The President's Committee on the Arts and the Humanities announced a new Turnaround Arts initiative as a pilot project for eight schools with officials from the White House and U.S. Department of Education. Organizers said they aim to demonstrate research that shows the arts can help reduce behavioural problems and increase student attendance, engagement and academic success. The two-year initiative will target eight high-poverty elementary and middle schools. The schools were among the lowest-performing schools in each of their states and had qualified for about $14 million in federal School Improvement Grants from the Obama administration. The public-private arts initiative will bring new training for educators at the Aspen Institute, art supplies, musical instruments and programs totalling about $1 million per year, funded by the Ford Foundation, the Herb Alpert Foundation and other sponsors. Of course, it’s not that the hypothesis needs further demonstration, nor that a mere eight schools is more than a grain of sand in the US school ‘system’. But it’s not the gift, it’s the thought behind it. —o— Next stop: the Federal budget. We’ll let you know if there is anything there of significance for the arts. Best regards Richard Letts
Music: Count Us In (1st November) will take place at 12.30pm AEST in 2012. Please check your calendars.
There are lots of new, free resources on the website – including cartoons, interviews and videos. Great lesson material.
Watch THIS video of Bellingen Youth Orchestra rehearsing “Different People”. With the class, make a list of the positive effect music has on children’s lives. Ask students for their ideas to add to that list.
Yipppeee – the Music: Count Us In song has been written, polished, and is in the process of being recorded. Any requests for the teaching kit and arrangements can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
http://musiccountusin.org.au/ Check out the new Music: Count Us In song for 2013. MP3 and teaching kits are ready to use! This year’s song could be the best yet!!
Greg Thwaites has supported the cause of Music: Count Us In by creating a free app for iPhone, iPod &iPad. By downloading this free program, students / staff / parents can learn the song from just about anywhere. Ask kids to download the app and leave them to learn the song in their own way!
Music: Count Us In 2012 song parts for ALL school instruments are now online: www.musiccountusin.org.au
Obtaining a login is free and easy for Australian schools (and home-schools). If there are parts or arrangements you would like, but cannot find, please email: email@example.com
All parts may be played along with the radio version of “Different People (Stand Together)”. ENJOY!!
Katie Noonan is one of Australia’s most versatile and beloved vocalists. A mother, singer, producer, songwriter, pianist and business woman, this 4 x ARIA Award winning and 6 x platinum selling songstress first received widespread praise as the angel-voiced songstress of indiepop band George and has since taken audiences on sublime excursions through Jazz, Pop and Classical music.
Abbey Slattery is in year 9 at Penleigh and Essendon Grammar School in Victoria. She attends Vocal Art Studios for singing lessons and Glee Club. As well as doing horse riding, yoga, netball and guitar lessons, Abbey has played piano since she was 8. She is a passionate song writer and is always carrying notes in her pockets with song ideas written on them. She says that music is the most important part of her life and is the way she expresses her emotions. Last year, her Glee Club performed at Disneyland and attended workshops with Disney and LA songwriters.
Aidan Rolfe is in year 12 at Kardinia International College in Geelong, where he is studying music. He is currently a vocalist and songwriter in the band Square One. He aspires to be a musician, and to write songs for different artists. Recently, Aidan has performed on the Main Stage at Minus18’s Same Sex Formal, to over 400 people. He has supported acts with Square One such as The Woohoo Revue and The Sweethearts, and performed at festivals such as Anglesea Music Festival, Aireys Open Mic and at the Queenscliff Music Festival, in the Freeza Battle of the Bands. Aidan enjoys writing diverse music, from funk, to indie, to ‘psychedelic – folk’.
Holly Winter has been learning piano for 7 years, taught herself ukulele recently and has being singing as long as she can remember. She had written a few songs here and there, but had never shown anyone her work until she entered Music: Count Us In. Holly is in the worship band at her school, as well as the band at her church. Aside from music, Holly also loves photography and film-making, English, Drama, Art, and even Science lessons at school. When she leaves school, she hopes to work in a creative field where she is free to express creative ideas and work with other creative people. Holly is in year 10 at Emmaus Christian College.
Blind virtually since birth, Ritchell Lim’s heightened awareness of sound has helped her to create vibrant, exuberant and joyous music. Her passion for singing began at an early age where the already musically inclined Ritchell began singing in her local church. She performed her first concert at the age of eight playing piano and singing gospel songs which inspired her to start writing her own material. Now 17, Ritchell is working on completing high school and also enjoys being part of a community band in Perth, singing, playing piano and writing original material. She attends Canning Vale College.
http://youtu.be/TWZBssrijbY Minister Peter Garrett speaks about the importance of music education to all students.
A FREE online tool to help teachers/parents get MORE music in Australian schools.
Just launched – check it out!
Includes case studies from award-winning Australian schools, as well as practical advice on overcoming potential hurdles.
There are now 50 schools written up on the More Music Toolkit. Browse away! Be inspired!!
Let us know if you like what you see … firstname.lastname@example.org
We’ve added more Australian school Case Studies to the More Music Toolkit. Come and take a look — be inspired! We want to see more & meaningful music in Aussie schools … http://www.moremusictoolkit.org.au
A Brief Survey of Research into the Benefits of Music in Education
Mandy Stefanakis and Assoc Prof Robin Stevens, of the MCA’s working group for a National Strategy for Research in Music Education, have conducted a national and international survey of research in music education to identify research projects demonstrating a broad range of benefits of music education. The references below are to research outcomes supported by research methodology assessed as producing highly reliable results.
Where research reports are available online, links have been given. Otherwise, readers can seek them through the list of references at the end of this report.
Music provides the opportunity for aesthetic experiences. An aesthetic knowledge can be described as a deep perceptual understanding in which the senses, the emotions and cognition are combined to make meaning through the experiences of creating, making and interpreting aesthetic forms. (See Australian Curriculum: The Arts, 2013; Seidel et al )
Personal, Social, Cultural Expression and Identity Formation
Music through performance and creative experiences provides a means for personal expression, communication and personal, social and cultural identity formation (See McPherson and Welch, 2012; Damasio, 2012; Bowman; Australian Curriculum: The Arts; Seidel et al; Dissanayake; Bresler; Storr; 1992; Green, 2011; Hargreaves et al, 2012; Gupta; Campbell et al 2008; McPherson et. al, 2012; Stefanakis)
Music contributes to students’ personal well-being through developing self-image, self-confidence, self-esteem, etc. (see Deasy; National Association for Music Education, President’s Committee on the Arts and in the Humanities; Seidel et al.)
With the introduction of more precise techniques to scan different areas of the brain, there has been a massive interest and increase in the amount of neurological research into brain function when engaged in a whole range of musical activities from passive listening to performing on individual instruments. Research specifically shows that both older and newer areas of the brain inclusive of sensory-motor, emotions, cognition, fine motor, equilibrium, aural centres, and both hemispheres of the brain are used to varying degrees and in different ways when engaged in musical activity with dependence on a range of factors. These include gender, age and experience of the musician, the task being undertaken, for example aural, performance, conducting, individual task, group task, and even the kind of music or sound used in a study. Additionally there are variations among individuals.
Importantly, evidence demonstrates that there is a more pervasive effect on the development of the brain (brain plasticity) when a child starts learning an instrument than learning that takes place as an adolescent or adult, but there is still plasticity in the adult brain. Sustained, structured practice with delineated outcomes enhances this plasticity. (Of note is the work of Levitin, 2012; Damasio, 2012; Evans et al, 2009; Hodges, 1996; Hodges and Gruhn, 2012; Juslin and Sloboda, 2001; Merrett and Wilson, 2012; Peretz and Zatorre, 2003; Asbury and Rich, Winner and Hetland)
Music contributes to students’ cognitive development including abstract thinking, aural and spatial awareness, verbal understanding (see above)
Music contributes to students’ kinetic / motor skill development (see above)
Music contributes to students’ creativity when engaged with composing, arranging, improvising tasks which call upon the individual or group to imagine, plan, organise, experiment with and develop sound in an abstract way (see Barrett and Tafuri, 2012; Harwood and Marsh, 2012; Seidel et al; Arts Ed Search, President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities).
Learning Outcomes across Disciplines
It is still not fully understood why, but music enhances learning in a range of non-musical domains. Current thinking centres around the fact that music stimulates so many different brain regions, or that it motivates learning through the brain chemical ‘rewards’ (such as dopamine hits), the joy that music provides, (McCarthy) or that the social connections and self-esteem it establishes in students has a carry-over effect. Although the reasons are not fully understood there is a great deal of evidence to show that there is a correlation between music learning and enhanced abilities in a range of areas:
· Music contributes to students’ rational thinking—reasoning, critical thinking, logistical thinking and interpretive skills (see McGarity, 1986)
· Music contributes to learning in other knowledge and skill areas such as numeracy, literacy (see Bahr, 1996; Geoghegan, 1993)
· Music contributes to students’ concentration, memory, time management. A plethora of short-term and longitudinal studies, particularly in the US, demonstrate these effects as a result of Arts Education and the suggested sources list many of these studies (see Burnaford, Arts Ed Search, Fiske, Deasy, Nafme for the above).
Social Cohesion and Skills
Music connects people through sound, so that there is a sense of physical and emotional camaraderie and shared experience. It is what is most unique about the musical experience (see Todd, 2002; Brown, 2000; McNeill, 1995). This ‘shared sound’ leads to a greater sense of communication with others, team cooperation and enhances social confidence (see Welch and McPherson, 2012).
Music provides a vocational outcome for some students (McPherson and Welch, 2012).
Barrett, M. S. and Tafuri, J. (2012) ‘Creative Meaning-Making in Infants’ amd Young Children’s Musical Cultures’ in McPherson, G. and Welch, G. (Eds.) (2012) The Oxford Handbook of Music Education Volume 1. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
Bahr, N. (1996). Relationships between Musicianship and Mathematical Skill. MEd thesis, University of Queensland, Queensland.
Brown, S. (2000) ‘The “Musilanguage” Model of Music’, in N. L. Wallin, B. Merker, and S. Brown (Eds.) The Origins of Music (pp. 271-300). Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
Campbell, P. Connell, C., and Beegle, A. (2008) ‘Adolescents Expressed Meanings of Music in and Out of School,’ in Journal of Research in Music Education. Fall 2007, Volume 55, Number 3, pp.220 – 236.
Damasio, A. (2012) Self Comes to Mind: Constructing the Conscious Brain. New York: Vintage.
Evans, A. C., Forgeard, M., Hyde, K. L., Lerch, J., Norton, A., Schlaug, G. and Winner, E. (2009) ‘Effects of Musical Training on Structural Brain Development: A Longitudinal Study,’ in The Neurosciences and Music III: Disorders and Plasticity: Annual New.York Academy of Sciences. 1169: 182–186.
Geoghegan, N. (1993). Possible Effects of Early Childhood Music on Mathematical Achievement. MA thesis, Macquarie University, New South Wales.
Green, L. (Ed.) (2011) Learning, Teaching and Musical Identity: Voices Across Cultures. Bloomington: Indiana University Press.
Hargreaves, D. J., MacDonald, R. and Miell, D. (2012) ‘Musical Identities Mediate Musical Development,’ in McPherson, G. and Welch, G. (Eds.) (2012) The Oxford Handbook of Music Education Volume 1. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
Harwood, E. and Marsh, K. (2012) ‘Children’s Ways of Learning Inside and Outside the Classroom,’ in McPherson, G. and Welch, G. (Eds.) (2012) The Oxford Handbook of Music Education Volume 1. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
Hodges, D. (1996) ‘Human Musicality,’ in Hodges, D. (Ed.) Handbook of Music Psychology. San Antonio: Institute for Music Research.
Hodges, D. and Gruhn, W. (2012) ‘Implications of Neurosciences and Brain Research for Music Teaching and Learning,’ in McPherson, G. and Welch, G. (Eds.) (2012) The Oxford Handbook of Music Education Volume 1. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
Juslin, P. and Sloboda, J. (Eds.) (2001) Music and Emotion. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Levitin, D. J. (2012) ‘What Does it Mean to be Musical?’ in Neuron 73, February 23, pp. 663 – 637.
McDonald, L. M. M. (1999) The Response to Classroom Music Experiences of Students who have Learning Difficulties and/or Behaviour Problems. MEd research paper, Deakin University, Victoria.
McGarity, B.M. (1986) Relationships among Cognitive Processing Styles, Musical Ability and Language Ability. MEd thesis, University of New England, New South Wales.
McNeill, W. (1995) Keeping Together in Time: Dance and Drill in Human History.
Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press.
McPherson, G. E., Davidson, J. W., & Faulkner, R. (2012) Music in Our Lives: Rethinking Musical Ability, Development and Identity. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
McPherson, G. E., and Welch, G. (Eds.) (2012) The Oxford Handbook of Music Education Volumes 1 and 11. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
Merrett, D. and Wilson, S. (2012) ‘Musicianship and the Brain,’ in Brown, A. (Ed.) Sound Musicianship: Understanding the Crafts of Music. Newcastle Upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.
Peretz, I. and Zatorre, R. J. (Eds.) (2003) The Cognitive Neuroscience of Music. New York: Oxford University Press.
Stacey, B.J. (1983) Music Education and the Hearing-Impaired Child: An Experimental Program. MMus thesis, University of Queensland, Queensland.
Storr, A. (1992) Music and the Mind. New York: Free Press.
Todd, N., Lee, C. and O’Boyle, D. (2002) ‘A Sensorimotor Theory of Temporal Tracking and Beat Induction’. Psychological Research, Volume 66, Number 1 / February pp: 26 – 39.
Weidenbach, V.G. (1981) Music in the Education of the Young, Multiply Handicapped Deaf / Blind Children. MA thesis, Macquarie University, New South Wales.
Welch, G. F. & McPherson, G. E. (2012) ‘Introduction and Commentary: Music Education and the Role of Music in People’s Lives,’ in McPherson, G. and Welch, G. (Eds.) (2012) The Oxford Handbook of Music Education Volume 1. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
Article in Sydney Morning Herald …
This advocacy site is chock-full of reasons why parents should insist on a musical education for ALL children. ENJOY!
music gives voice to feelings that would normally be kept silent
Read the touching article HERE.
ScienceDaily (May 5, 2011) — New research shows that musicians’ brains are highly developed in a way that makes the musicians alert, interested in learning, disposed to see the whole picture, calm, and playful. The same traits have previously been found among world-class athletes, top-level managers, and individuals who practice transcendental meditation.
This article was published in the weekend Australian newspaper – a must-read by Richard Letts.
an article illustrating the great work done by music therapists with school-age students
Music educatuin helps create a great start for better learning, stronger social skills, and overall improved self-esteem. Read article HERE.
read the article HERE
A choir for retired rugby players, a ukulele group based in a regional aged care facility, a country music competition exclusively for older musicians and a choir to aid the recovery of stroke survivors are among finalists in this year’s Music in Communities Awards.The national awards are presented each year by the Music in Communities Network, Australia’s only national network for community music groups and practitioners. With a prize pool of $10,000, the Awards are designed to highlight outstanding examples of community-based music making across the country. Themed differently each year, the 2012 “Creative Ageing” theme has drawn out fifteen finalists, each taking a special approach to engaging older Australians in active music making. The finalists hail from seven of the eight states and territories in Australia, equally representing metropolitan and regional areas. Local Councils and aged care facilities play a central or supporting role for a number of the finalists, while others are small, independent community music groups. Winners will be announced in mid-November, 2012. Click here to start browsing the 15 finalists. (http://musicincommunities.org.au/awards16/mic-awards-2012/140-awards/award-finalists/553-albany-city-wind-ensemble) ** THE FINALISTS: ------------------------------------------------------------ * Albany City Wind Ensemble (http://musicincommunities.org.au/awards16/mic-awards-2012/140-awards/award-finalists/553-albany-city-wind-ensemble) * Campbelltown Arts Centre (http://musicincommunities.org.au/awards16/mic-awards-2012/140-awards/award-finalists/554-campbelltown-arts-centre) * Canberra U3A Recorder Orchestra (http://musicincommunities.org.au/awards16/mic-awards-2012/140-awards/award-finalists/555-canberra-u3a-recorder-orchestra) * Catch Music (http://musicincommunities.org.au/awards16/mic-awards-2012/140-awards/award-finalists/556-catch-music) * The Daytones (http://musicincommunities.org.au/awards16/mic-awards-2012/140-awards/award-finalists/557-the-daytones) * Goulburn Regional Conservatorium (http://musicincommunities.org.au/awards16/mic-awards-2012/140-awards/award-finalists/558-goulburn-regional-conservatorium) * Intergenerational Music Group (http://musicincommunities.org.au/awards16/mic-awards-2012/140-awards/award-finalists/562-intergenerational-music-group-royal-freemasons) * Lane Cove Concert Band (http://musicincommunities.org.au/awards16/mic-awards-2012/140-awards/award-finalists/559-lane-cove-concert-band) * Marian Grove Ukulele Group (http://musicincommunities.org.au/awards16/mic-awards-2012/140-awards/award-finalists/560-marian-grove-ukulele-group) * Rainbow Choir (http://musicincommunities.org.au/awards16/mic-awards-2012/140-awards/award-finalists/561-rainbow-choir) * Shellie Morris and the Borroloola Songwomen (http://musicincommunities.org.au/awards16/mic-awards-2012/140-awards/award-finalists/563-shellie-morris) * Silver Beat Rock Choir (http://musicincommunities.org.au/awards16/mic-awards-2012/140-awards/award-finalists/564-silver-beat-rock-choir) * Stroke a Chord Choir (http://musicincommunities.org.au/awards16/mic-awards-2012/140-awards/award-finalists/565-stroke-a-chord-choir) * Ultra Golden Country Music Association (http://musicincommunities.org.au/awards16/mic-awards-2012/140-awards/award-finalists/566-ultra-golden-country-music-association) * Wagga City Rugby Male Choir (http://musicincommunities.org.au/awards16/mic-awards-2012/140-awards/award-finalists/567-wagga-city-male-rugby-choir) Read more about the awards (http://musicincommunities.org.au/awards16/about) and this year's finalists (http://musicincommunities.org.au/awards16/mic-awards-2012) on our website. Follow us on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/MusicInCommunitiesNetwork) or Twitter (https://twitter.com/community_music) for updates!
Entries close Friday 28 September 2012
Is there a project, group, organisation or activity in your community that gets older Australians making music? With $10,000 in prize money up for grabs and national recognition, the Music in Communities Awards 2012 are now open for entries, recognising outstanding achievement in community music activity.
Inaugurated in 2008 and with a prize pool of $10,000 the national scheme is run by the Music Council of Australia as an encouragement to groups that are often the unsung heroes of national cultural life to step into the limelight for a public pat on the back.
This year, the Awards are themed around ‘creative ageing’ and will highlight activities that encourage older Australians to participate in music making, get people playing later in life when they otherwise would not, or that nurture inter-generational music activity.
The Awards are open to all forms of music groups including choirs, bands, orchestras, ukulele groups and drum circles; community and volunteer organisations delivering and supporting music programs in communities; local Councils; aged care facilities; schools and individuals.
What is it? The 2012 Music in Communities Awards
Who is it for? Community-based music groups, organisations, programs and activities including bands, choirs, uke groups, music therapy programs, music programs run by nursing homes or local councils…anything that encourages Australians to make music in their community!
You can nominate your group/organisation/project, or nominate others.
Process: The awards are open until September 28, 2012. A panel of judges will consider the nominations and winners will be announced in November 2012. The prize pool includes $10,000 cash.
How to enter:
2. Complete the questions in the word document
3. Save the word document with the nominee group/organisation/individual as the file name
3. Go to the online nomination form. Complete the questions on the form then upload your nomination form.
Questions? Contact email@example.com
The first report from our series of research projects focusing on grassroots community-based music making has been released. Community Orchestras in Australia looks at how many groups we have in Australia, how many people are in them, what repertoire they play (and would like to play more), and how orchestras source their music. * Read the report online <http://musicincommunities.org.au/research/research/509> * Download Community Orchestras in Australia (PDF) musicincommunities.org.au/images/stories/PDFs/July2012_CommunityOrch estrasInAustralia_masso.pdf * Read a blog post about Coffs Harbour City Orchestra musicincommunities.org.au/news/mentors-blog/508-chco * Read a blog post about the SBS Youth Orchestra musicincommunities.org.au/news/mentors-blog/507-guestpost-sbs
and what other groups can learn from its successful long-standing support from SBS.
* Find out more about our new Repertoire Bank musicincommunities.org.au/programs/repertoire/527 Registrations are now open musicincommunities.org.au/register20/coming-events/506 for the network's first conference focusing on a particular type of community music group (in this case, orchestras). It will be held in Sydney on Saturday 22 September, 2012.
Venezuelan prisons have half of their inmates playing in orchestra or singing in choir. Read more …
Read this article about how Drumskool in the UK (ages 5-18) is even reducing crime.
“Music Monday exists to celebrate the galvanizing power of music and demonstrate how that power is rooted in school music programs … Our society needs to be producing students who are creative as well as self-disciplined, who can work in teams as well as on their own. Learning music teaches these skills. We need all our children to have the opportunity to enjoy music in all its forms. And remember: If a student holds a musical instrument, then he or she can’t hold a knife, or a joint, or a needle or a crack pipe — or a gun.”
View videos of the Music Outback Foundation at work in Australia’s OUTBACK.
“Through songwriting, students can engage deeply in English and first language learning activities, developing content that is meaningful to them, and supporting community desires to work in the context of local language and culture. Music activities encourage attendance at school, and can build important partnerships between schools and their communities. They can also provide avenues of employment for community adults with music skills.”
Music Training Helps Learning & Memory
An article by William R Klemm from Psychology Today
This year’s Music: Count Us In resources are about to be released – ready for 1st November, 2012 performance date. HERE is Fairvale High School’s 2011 MCUI concert. Play it to your class, and ask how THEY would like to perform the 2012 song: “Different People (Stand Together)”. Note that the local primary school came to the concert too!!
This year’s wiki site for ‘Music Count Us In’ is up and running. So far there are lyrics, scores, mp3’s, a sing-along movie and a karaoke movie. Keep looking because more resources will be added over the next weeks. Just follow this free link:
Hope you enjoy it, Sally
free podcasts – Musica Viva held a discussion forum in February 2011 on the topic of Arts Education in Australia. They recorded the sessions and have made them available online as a 4-part podcast. Click on the arrow on the far right of each clip to download it (for later listening) OR listen online to each podcast.
Half of the students who took part in Musical Futures agreed that they felt better about school as a result. Read more on the above link.
Lesson Idea: In the spirit of “Musical Futures”, give your students access to the MP3 of “We’ve Got the Music” … divide them into groups of 4-6 with drums / guitars / keyboards / ukuleles / percussion, etc … ask them to come up with their OWN version of “We’ve Got the Music” (about 30 mins) simply by using their ears, playing along with the MP3, experimenting and supporting each other … share their performance attempt with the class.
The key factor is that the student performance SHOULD sound different from the original MP3, reflecting the group’s creative interpretation.
“We’ve Got the Music” is the 2011 program song for MUSIC: COUNT US IN
There’s a new online (free) magazine published in UK to support Music Education …
11 July 2012 The National Advocates for Arts Education (NAAE) welcomed the draft of The Australian Curriculum: The Arts, released on Monday by Schools Minister Peter Garrett. NAAE celebrated that at last all Australian students will have an entitlement to learn in, through and about the five arts subjects of dance, drama, media arts, music and the visual arts from Years F-6. Students in Years 7-10 will be given art form choices in secondary school in line with available resources. Chair of NAAE, Julie Dyson, said, "The arts curriculum provides for basic entitlement for every child - it does not replace the excellent programs already being delivered across Australia. Australia now leads the world in introducing a national curriculum that privileges all five art forms as a learning entitlement." NAAE recognises that there is still work to be done in refining the curriculum, and each arts subject association will be working with the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) to achieve further revisions. However, acknowledged are the years of work by the writers, advisers, professional associations and industry members who have advocated for and contributed to the draft curriculum. Following representations to Schools Minister Garrett and Arts Minister Simon Crean, NAAE will now address concerns about implementation. Dick Letts, Executive Director of the Music Council of Australia, said, "We will be joining with industry and education colleagues to advocate to responsible state and territory ministers for improved teacher education and professional development, particularly in primary schools". We look forward to a constructive and fruitful debate through the consultation period, and to the release of the final document and its implementation from 2013. For media comment: Julie Dyson on 0412 211 513; Dick Letts (02) 9251 3816
Arts educators call for national funding rethink
A newly formed alliance of Australia’s senior arts educators is calling on both sides of federal politics to urgently support increased funding to the tertiary arts sector.
The Australian Council of Deans and Directors of Creative Arts (DDCA) inaugural President, Professor Su Baker from the Victorian College of the Arts at the University of Melbourne, said creative arts education should be a national priority.
“Politicians should recognise the importance of arts to the national curriculum, to Australia’s sense of nationhood and culture, and to the development of a vibrant ‘creative economy’,” she said.
“And they should look at what our international competitors are investing in higher arts education. We are way behind their level of commitment!”
The Council was formed in Hobart in February and includes representatives from 22 Australian universities that teach art, dance, design, theatre, music, film and television, screen arts and creative writing.
Professor Su Baker said the arts are an essential part of the creative industries, which is one of the country’s fastest growing employment sectors.
“With expanding digital media capacity, the NBN and fresh approaches to online education, it’s crucial the Australian arts sector can compete on the global stage,” she said.
“There is an urgent challenge to create 21st-century higher arts education that contributes directly to the sustainability of practices and the resilience of artists, researchers and professionals in the field.”
Professor Baker said world-class creative arts education also had benefits for students of other disciplines.
“It provides students with the opportunity to build capacity and skills in a wide range of disciplines whilst also equipping students with research skills, which are central to a modern arts training,” she said.
“The Council will fiercely advocate on behalf of the creative arts education sector and strive to highlight the important role played by the arts in Australia.”
Ryan Sheales | University of Melbourne, Australia.
Music: Count Us In will happen in 2012. This year’s culminating day is Thursday, 1st November.
Join 500 000 Australian students in a massive music-making opportunity. Watch this space for FREE music, resources and lesson plans.
Read more: www.musiccountusin.org.au
Research from Canada finds high-performing students do even better if they are enrolled in ongoing music classes.
The new and fresh 2011 Lobby Kit has just been uploaded to the More Music Toolkit (free). Feedback always welcome.
Red Cross has joined with national youth broadcaster triple j to develop a recovery playlist of new music and expert advice to help people who have experienced trauma.
Red Cross National Recovery Coordinator, Kate Brady, said recovering from a traumatic event, such as a bushfire, flood or medical emergency, can be a long and difficult process with particular challenges for teenagers and young adults.
“Our experience in the aftermath of disasters like the Black Saturday bushfires is that people aged 12 to 25 need dedicated resources to help them engage in the recovery process,” said Ms Brady.
“We have partnered with triple j to produce the playlist which is full of new music, recovery messages from well known triple j identities and advice from a number of experts.”
New PowerPoint just uploaded – please check out the latest music advocacy tool – helping to get more music into more Australian schools.
If you test run it on School Executives and/or Parent & Teacher Committees, please let us know how you go! firstname.lastname@example.org
This clip from ABC TV news features David Robertson talking about the personal value of learning music.
Visual arts are often left behind, to the detriment of education, says Ainslie MacGibbon.
Australia seems to be ignoring a global move towards understanding the significance of art in education, the president of Art Education Australia, Marian Strong, says.
The new Year 10 certificate for NSW students may include details of AMEB exam achievements. Further down the track, it may extend to participation statements re. school musicals, ensembles, concerts, etc. Read more HERE.
Dick Letts (MCA) has just published an open letter to the Australian community – calling for more Music education and more teacher training (in music) for Australian schools and teachers. Read it here (top link). Distribute it to newspapers, P&C committees, school executives, blogs …
The Goulburn Conservatorium has commissioned an electronic book and piano music to encourage students to learn piano, enjoy music, and compose. This link is free. ENJOY it with your students! Afterwards, ask them for their personal responses.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=Z78Mzkl9rTk Please watch this with your classes – the video shows a young disabled girl making amazing progress with regular music sessions.
The first powerpoint has some examples of early childhood / lower primary songs and teaching ideas. It starts with a cute tree which illustrates how music fits into the various components of a child.
The second powerpoint on this site is an advocacy presentation for music education in schools.
Juvenile justice centres in USA are using drumming skills to help young people learn to read.
Read the article HERE.
An American Music Education advocacy video clip on YouTube.
from Community Music Victoria’s ‘Music In Schools’ Statement
Singing and music making together develops memory capacity, attentiveness, pattern recognition, rhythmic understanding and facility, body/mind coordination, volume control, connectedness, curiosity and creative initiatives.
Singing together is particularly good for learning literacy and numeracy. It develops language structure and grammar, playing with language (eg: rhyming, alliteration), pronunciation, accents and rhythm of language. Because there can be limited text and much repetition with singing, it helps to reinforce many of these concepts in an enjoyable way.
Singing and music making is an effective memorisation device and an engaging introduction to history and culture. It’s great for mood control, for example: facilitating relaxation and calm, focusing and energizing learners as well as content delivery, integration of play and instruction, and the enhancement of events and occasions.
Making music together brings an awareness of self and others, provides emotional expressions and outlet, and develops identity, confidence, self-esteem, a sense of achievement, expressiveness and health (mental and physical).
Making music together fosters cooperation and interaction (together we can do more than we can alone), simultaneous listening and vocalisation, group awareness (bonding/sense of belonging), the direct experience of synergy (the sum is greater than the parts), and embodies the values of diversity and respect across gender, age, culture and skill level.
Studying and practising music is valuable as an end in itself (not just as a way of becoming better at literacy, mathematics or personal development). It develops an understanding and appreciation of a beauty that is uniquely musical. We learn that by manipulating the elements of music we produce different results and can explore this unique and ephemeral art form.
WE BELIEVE THAT MUSICAL ACTIVITY SHOULD BE A DAILY EVENT IN PRIMARY SCHOOLS.
• The focus should be on inclusive practical music making with an emphasis on singing.
• Classroom teachers should feel empowered and equipped to lead or provide the opportunity for their students to engage in singing and music making activities.
• Music Specialists as well as providing more in depth musical experiences, including music literacy and instrumental experiences, should be helpful in resourcing the classroom teachers as well as sharing ideas and expertise with classroom teachers.
• The daily classroom music practice need only be a few minutes at the start or end of a session.
• It can be integrated into a current classroom theme or used as a teaching method or tool for other subject areas (see ‘Learning Capacities’ and ‘Teaching Methods’ above.)
• It is important to develop a culture of singing and music making and for it to feel like a normal classroom activity. Five minutes at the start of each day will be more effective for developing a culture than one half hour per week.
Free online video – a must watch!
For a short time, you can download Richard Gill speaking on Music Education in Australia on ABC Radio National (Jan 23, 2013).
One of Australia’s pre-eminent conductors and a passionate advocate of music education, Richard specialises in opera, musical theatre and vocal and choral training.
Join us for this second Music Makers Address, hosted by ABC Classic FM’s Mairi Nicolson.
Plus, performances from 40 young singers from Southern Voices.
The Address will be recorded and broadcast in ABC Classic FM’s Music Makers on Sunday, August 14 at 1205.
DATE: TUESDAY, AUGUST 9, 2011
TIME: 7pm – 8.15pm
No reservation is required and admission is free.
Doors open from 6pm.
VENUE: The Iwaki Auditorium,
ABC Southbank Centre,
120 Southbank Boulevard,
Southbank (cnr of Southbank Boulevard and Sturt Street)
Please join Richard Gill and Mairi for refreshments in the Green Room at the conclusion of the evening.
From 29 May 2012 through 1 Jun 2012 at The Lorentz Center in Leiden the workshop Core Knowledge, Language and Culture will be held.
This workshop will address the relation between core knowledge, language, music, and culture, with a view to assessing the current understanding of these questions for a theory of the mind/brain.
XXXX School is proud to be taking part in Music: Count Us In on Thursday 1st November at 11.30am (AEST).
At that time, half a million school students from across Australia will simultaneously perform a song called “Different People (Stand Together)” – a fantastic song written earlier this year by Australian High School students and Josh Pyke.
The aims of Music: Count Us In include: promoting the value of Music education in every school and fostering well-being through Music and singing. In some towns, a cluster of smaller schools are bussing students to a central meeting place to heighten festivities and strengthen the bond between communities.
You may access downloadable logos and support materials from www.musiccountusin.org.au.
free online magazine for School Band and Orchestra teachers – an American publication – free online
Includes advocacy material, interviews with successful teachers, product reviews (and lots of advertising)
The intention of the kit is to provide arguments and methods for school parents and school music teachers to establish music programs in schools where there are none, and gain greater support for music programs in schools where they already exist.
ABC aired a TV show highlighting the choral direction of 91-year old Jessie Carmichael.
SMAG is a Victorian-based advocacy group, pushing for more music in Australian schools. This website contains blogs about their latest activities, and links to policy documents.
A message from SMAG:
Regarding the current Vic inquiry into music education – we hope to encourage all members of the community to make submissions. http://www.parliament.vic.gov.au/etc/inquiry/351
The sMAG blog now has support guides for both instrumentalists and classroom music specialists. All voices in the industry are welcomed. Information on how to engage the local media – especially in rural areas, as well as encouraging schools to use any format, including ICT tools and/or survey monkey, to present their data. School principals will be trickling back to work now, so it’s probably a good time to get them on board: http://smag-schoolmusicactiongroup.blogspot.com.au/
Best wishes to everyone in the music community at this important time. Thank you to all those that have already submitted.
“What is revealed in the submission is that we currently have a major problem with the status of music education in schools with up to three quarters of Australian school children missing out. Not to mention an ongoing diminishing of school music education provision. ACARA appears to be leaving the issue of the provision of music and the arts provision to the States and schools so this inquiry has come at a critical time in Victoria. We have one opportunity to convince our state government that music education is fundamental to the development of the child and is a human right. We must keep working to turn the tide on music education. Pease keep up your support. We still have a way to go.”
Richard Tognetti and members of the ACO played for students at Matraville Soldiers Settlement Public School (thanks to the support of the Australian Children’s Music Foundation). The article’s content includes advocacy for music education in schools.
Here is a powerpoint presentation to show students … before asking them to write a song for 500 000 students to perform on November 1st, 2012 in Australia. Write individually or as a group. Keep the lyrics positive and optimistic.
Music: Count Us In has full details – due 25 May, 2012. $1000 up for grabs!
Music: Count Us In offers a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for a talented young person to have their song sung by over half a million students.
Download the brief at musiccountusin.org.au/the-song
Study: Music Training Boosts Brainpower
Pacific Standard, 1/23/13
“Want your child to get better and better with words? Put a musical instrument in his or her hands. That’s the implication of a new paper from Germany, which confirms and augments research conducted in Canada and Hong Kong. Across cultures, it appears, training on a musical instrument improves kids’ verbal memory. The results of an 18-month study suggest ‘a positive transfer effect from musical expertise onto speech and language processing,’ writes a research team…[they] note that no similar effect was found for kids taking an enriched academic curriculum. The study featured seven- or eight-year-old children (37 boys, 36 girls), recruited from seven primary schools scattered around Germany. Twenty-five received special music training above and beyond the basic school curriculum. Specifically, they participated in weekly 45-minute lessons, where they played the instrument of their choice.”
“Playing music requires continued monitoring of meaningful chunks of information,” they write. “Rather than individual notes, these chunks entail clusters of notes that are combined into meaningful melodic gestures and phrases.”
There’s an obvious parallel between that process and the way clusters of syllables, meaningless in themselves, combine in our brains to form words. And in contrast with the verbal results—and in line with previous research—there were no similar increases in visual memory.
School band rehearsals from a different perspective: read the blog here
Benjamin Zander has two infectious passions: classical music, and helping us all realize our untapped love for it — and by extension, our untapped love for all new possibilities, new experiences, new connections.
If you are an Australian school / campus wanting to get more music into your school / program, please surf around the following website and email me with feedback (as to how useful the site was or was not!) www.moremusictoolkit.org.au
Emails to email@example.com
This blog and sample ‘letter from a parent’ are an example of how powerful ‘parent letters’ can be – boosting acceptance of the Arts in schools.
A comprehensive article about the benefits of music to ALL of humanity!
SMH article by Richard Gill here from 2009
It is a national disgrace that music education is not a central part of every child’s schooling, writes Richard Gill.
Published in November, 2011, this timely book (by Brian Caldwell and Tanya Vaughan) takes up the challenge of maintaining programs in the arts in the face of unrelenting pressure from two directions; the increasing focus on literacy and numeracy in schools, teamed with the cut-backs in public funding that often affect the arts most severely. Drawing on the wealth of evidence already available on the impact of the arts, including the findings of a landmark experimental study in Australia, this text considers:
The social and educational impact of neglecting the arts
Research evidence on engagement in the arts
Why there is a need for educational reform
How to transform schools through engagement in the arts
National Library of Australia has a new online catalog called TROVE – research for books, journal, video, audio, websites, pictures and more. You can even click through the website to purchase many of the items, if you wish.
A quick update on Music: Count Us In 2012:
The TV promo starts to air around the country next week. Watch it here.
Artscape: Dr Sarmast’s Music School
Currently available on ABC iView (free) in 2 episodes:
“Melbourne-based Afghan musicologist Dr Ahmad Sarmast, returns to Kabul after 15 years, with a dream to create the first national institute of music and return their musical rights back to the children of Afghanistan.”
Read the report HERE
“The issue of artistic freedom is crucial to any nation. It is not ‘just’ about the artists’ rights to express themselves freely, it is also a question of the rights of citizens to access artistic expressions and take part in cultural life — and thus one of the key issues for democracy,”
“Instead of trying to defend traditional band, choir and orchestra classes, music educators would do well to embrace the craft as a way to teach creativity, problem-solving and cultural harmony — truly 21st century skills, for artists and engineers alike. If we do so, the demand for music will return stronger than ever.”
“The NEA report, released last week, shows that high levels of arts engagement by the lowest socioeconomic quarter of students corresponds with greater numbers of students who, for example, complete high school calculus, exercise the right to vote, do volunteer work, finish a Bachelor’s degree and choose a professional career path. In short, the arts help create young adults who have better academic outcomes, are more civically engaged and exhibit higher career goals.”
A recent report reflects on the positive impact on Victoria’s budget, thanks to LIVE music.
AN INQUIRY will be held into music education in Victorian schools amid fears it is not taught in many primary schools and is being cannibalised by preparation for NAPLAN tests.
Read more: www.theage.com.au/victoria/a-musical-education-lacks-primacy-in-primary-schools-20121203-2ar4x.html#ixzz2E88HUjPS
We’ve got the Music & Music: Count Us In online resources are up and going, Jozzbeat-style. They are accessed via this page:
Jozzbeat will give each school a free log-in (after the school has registered for Music: Count Us In at www.musiccountusin.org.au)
Existing customers of Jozzbeat that come through as MCUI registrees can just use their existing JozzBeat website password/username to access the resources.
Grab a group of kids, log on, learn the song, add some percussion, and have a fun lesson
“Who Stopped the Music” discusses the state of Australian music education (2009) on ABC Radio National. You can listen at the above link.
This publication is from the White House (USA)
http://youtu.be/pAV-fJOl0J4 Watch this well-edited video with your class, then discuss the benefits of music-making to students and teachers. Make a list of songs that make kids feel happy and positive. Brainstorm why massed singing makes us all feel special on the inside!
While over a thousand music professionals are expected to gather in Brisbane from 21-24 November 2013 for the 5th IMC World Forum on Music, we know that many others won’t be able to join us for a variety of reasons. To ensure that their ideas and opinions can feed into this important event, a dedicated YouTube channel has been created. Between now and November 2013, we hope to post ‘1001 Voices on Musical Futures’, where, in no more than five minutes, interviewees summarise the key issues they identify as crucial to sustaining music and engaging communities as we approach 2020 and beyond. The first recordings are now live at http://www.youtube.com/user/1001voicesWFM5