I have spent so much time talking to other teachers, parents, students and student teachers about classroom music. As teachers, we all believe that our own subject is the most important. Parents usually believe that the academic subjects are most important.
But I have spent many hours of my time defending music in the classroom, in schools. So many people honestly believe that it is a waste of time money and effort: That the students fail to get anything out of the subject other than to sing a song, or be able to clap in time with the music.
But it is so much more than that. What about the students who excel in music, and not in any other subject. Others have their time to shine in English and Maths and Physical Education. Why can’t the minority still have their opportunity to shine if music is the area where they are naturally gifted.
Music gives as another medium of communication and a way to share ideas and stories without speaking or writing a word. Key social skills can be learnt throughout a music classroom. Collaborative learning, independent learning, the list goes on and on.
Then there is the argument about not only the complete lack of funding, but in many government schools, the fact that it barely exists, or fails to exist at all.
On the Music Count Us In website the following is said in response to the title “Don’t all schools already teach students music?”
Not really, no. The key with meaningful music learning, as the Review says, is that it has to be ‘continuous, sequential and developmental’ for students to benefit. We know, for example, that as few as 23% of government schools are able to offer their students a music education which fits that bill - they would like to, but they lack the resources. In private schools, the number leaps up to 88%. The numbers vary greatly from State to State, but that ‘23% compared with 88%’ statistic reflects the national average. Music: Count Us In is about saying that ALL kids deserve, and can benefit from, music.
Music count us in are using the ICT in a simple way, using the Internet to share PDF and audio files, to assisting in creating opportunities for music to exist in even more classrooms around Australia.
If you are interested in finding out some more information, or want information about how you can include music in your own classroom setting, see their website: