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Charlotte Mason Music Education – the Why
As homeschoolers, it is easy to get overwhelmed by all the subjects and topics we want to cover. We want to teach all the beautiful and lovely things! We all desire to give our children the best education possible. The bottom line is, we simply cannot teach all the things. We have to draw the line somewhere due to time and other constraints. We must choose to set some things aside for later, or perhaps forever.
The important thing is that we consider carefully what it is we set aside. It’s very unfortunate that so many public schools opt to cut out music. There is incredible beauty to be found in the melodies, crescendos, and crashes of music.
Consider these incredible benefits of studying music and composers. I have a feeling they’ll encourage you to put composer and music study on your homeschool priority list just as we have!
Music Study Enhances Overall Learning – There are multiple studies out there that have found a significant link between music study and academic achievement. Participating in music has been known to help improve math and English scores across the board. Simply listening to music uses the same part of the brain that is involved in paying attention, making predictions, and solidifying an event into memory.
Music Adds Depth of Knowledge – Whether or not your kids remember the details of Beethoven’s childhood or where Vivaldi grew up, they will reap benefits through the learning itself. One of our main objectives as home educators is to raise lifelong learners, right? Teaching our kids how to read music, the difference between brass and woodwind instruments, and why John Newton wrote Amazing Grace will deepen their baseline learning. What if becoming acquainted with Katherine Lee Bates and her song America the Beautiful is exactly what your hesitant learner needs to light the way for the pursuit of more knowledge?
Music Encourages Creativity – It’s true, we don’t all have musical skills or even a musical bent. But learning about the creative lives of composers and being exposed to the creativity that is music will inspire creativity in all of us. Especially if you have a student who is drawn to the musical scene, there’s no limit to the kind of creativity music study could inspire. Music is a language in itself, and some students speak it (and understand it) better than their native tongue.
Music Builds Critical Thinking Skills – Being a language of its own, music requires interpretation. No matter the genre or the way by which the music is expressed (i.e. instrumental, voice, solo, ensemble), music opens up a whole world of unique, thoughtful discussion. Studying the life of a composer then making the connection to his music is an incredible use of critical thinking skills as well.
Music Gives a Glimpse into History – Music and composer study allows us to take a walk in the shoes of those who came before us. It can open our eyes to a world very different from our own, encouraging empathy and allowing us to learn from others’ mistakes and successes. Maybe it’ll inspire your student to leave his or her own mark on history through the beautiful language that is music.
In a perfect world, we would always have time for music! It’s not a perfect world, but as homeschoolers we do have the freedom to enhance our child’s learning, encourage creativity, and inspire a passion for learning and for music itself through composer and music study.
Music Resources for your Charlotte Mason Homeschool
Welcome to the Symphony: A Musical Exploration of the Orchestra Using Beethoven’s Symphony No. 5Story of the Orchestra : Listen While You Learn About the Instruments, the Music and the Composers Who Wrote the Music!Peter and The Wolf