WHY MUSIC? WHY BAND?
Much of what is written below was published by Tim Lautzenheiser, a music educator who has traveled the world for more than 30 years working with music teachers and students in various settings. He is considered one of the leading experts and motivational speakers on this subject.
“Music for the sake of music” is a mantra that serves as the keystone theme for the foundation of music teaching, music learning, and music performance. There is no substitute or replacement for music-making as it relates to the positive growth and development of the human mind, body, and spirit. More importantly, music is a place for everyone!
Pablo Picasso is quoted with the following: “Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.” Research shows that the majority (over 85%) of music literates LEARN music in the school setting, whether through general music classes, choir, orchestra, and/or band. It is apparent if students are not part of a school music program, there is little (if any) chance they will seek to develop their musical skills outside the school setting.
The following is a long list, although not exhaustive, of the qualities learned through the teaching of music:
- An understanding of QUALITY as well as the rewards of QUANTITY.
- Behavior based on ETHICS as well as the importance of obeying the RULES.
- Respect for AUTHORITY as opposed to fear of DOMINATION.
- A working WISDOM as well as a solid transcript of ACHIEVEMENT.
- An ongoing development of INNER PEACE as well as a workable plan for personal SECURITY.
The National Association for Music Education lists these benefits:
- Musical training helps develop language and reasoning.
- A mastery of memorization.
- Students learn to improve their work.
- Increased coordination.
- A sense of achievement.
- Students stay engaged in school.
- Success in society.
- Emotional development.
- Students learn pattern recognition.
- Better ACT scores.
- Fine-tuned auditory skills.
- Music builds imagination and intellectual curiosity.
- Music can be relaxing.
- Musical instruments can teach discipline.
- Preparation for the creative economy.
- Development in creative thinking.
- Music can develop spatial intelligence.
- Students can learn teamwork.
- Responsible risk-taking.
- Better self-confidence.
So who should study music and who should be in the band, choir, and/or orchestra? Music is a place for everyone! The study of music breaks down societal barriers from race to socioeconomic strata. Music often “reaches” the students who are struggling with other academic studies. Even if a student is not going to be a professional musician or teacher, the discipline of music-making is transferable to every learning situation in and outside the academic community. It is my belief that no other discipline in school can better prepare the mind and spirit for the challenges of medical study, law school, classes in engineering, education/teaching, business college, etc.
It might be more appropriate to ask: Why not music? Why not band? It is evident music education should be experienced by every student. We, as a culture, will be best served if the hearts and minds of our youth are filled with the knowledge and understanding of music.
One final thought: All of the above is true for Central Baptist College. What sets us apart is that students are a part of a Christ-centered environment that is committed to transforming lives through education that integrates Christian faith and academic excellence. I pray that music students will give us a look when deciding on their future collegiate home. They will be pleasantly surprised at what they discover. For more information about the band at CBC, please email Tim Gunter at email@example.com. For information about our choir program, please email Jim Turner at firstname.lastname@example.org.
--Tim Gunter, Director of Bands and Associate Professor of Music at CBC
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