Even those who have never played an instrument before have experienced the power of music. Merely listening to your favorite songs changes the way your brain functions, so why not bring the power of music into your classroom? These 4 popular music activities can help your students learn what kind of instruction style works best for them.
Music is all about connecting, collaborating, and creating with one another. With education-specific digital tools and engaging music activities, your students will have a better experience learning any subject. Let’s get started!
The Benefits of Music in the Classroom
Repeatedly proven, music education spurs rapid cognitive development in people of all ages, from children to adults. Studies show that music education can raise the IQ in children by nearly 7.5 points. Moreover, children with musical training receive higher scores in both language and math tests. But that’s not all that music education has to offer your students.
Music education encourages students to think creatively and critically about problems while they strengthen their sense of community with one another. When you add music activities to your curriculum, your students will reap the following benefits.
Music Increases Creativity
A Finnish study found that music affects multiple brain parts, including those that process emotions, motor skills, and creativity. These areas activate even when a person is simply listening to music. The mere sound of your favorite songs exercises complex neural networks closely associated with emotions and the ability to focus.
In addition, the brain closely relates music to the same parts that process language. Unlike spoken languages, music does not necessarily relate to anything other than itself, which means that music alone can tell a story. Due to these factors, it’s up to students to find the story within each musical composition, supporting the development of active and critical listening.
Music Supports Social Bonding and Character Development
Forming strong social relationships and empathizing with others is vital to your student’s development. Although most educational institutions focus on test scores or curriculum, encouraging your students to develop higher levels of emotional intelligence will allow them to flourish as they blossom into adulthood.
When you bring music into your classrooms, students can collaborate on fun, engaging projects while strengthening their social skills. Since each person interprets a song differently, students further develop their ability to see another person’s point of view. As your students learn more about how other people listen to music, their emotional intelligence will improve, and they will become more imaginative.
Popular Music Activities for the Classroom
When most educators consider music in Education, they envision students playing classical instruments or studying music theory, but music activities have evolved beyond only learning an instrument. As the EdTech industry booms, many teachers recognize that technology can be integrated into music to enhance their curriculum and make learning fun again!
Still trying to figure out where to start? Soundtrap for Education keeps students engaged. This easy-to-use audio production platform is made especially for students of all ages to collaborate, connect, and create. Since Soundtrap for Education is cloud-based, students can use it through any Wi-Fi-connected device, whether a desktop computer in the school library or their smartphone. Students can work on group projects from any location and at any time. If your students are ready to create, check out a few of these fun music activities that teachers of any subject can utilize,
1. Create Your Own Radio Commercial
Traditional teaching methods rely on lectures and role memorization, but students learn better when they move, create, and connect with peers. The great thing about incorporating music into your lessons is that you can transform any lesson plan or subject into an engaging educational experience.
If you’re ready for your students to learn by doing, consider allowing them to start out by creating a radio commercial and utilizing DAW software. Of course, the project itself will vary depending on the class you teach, but you can start with just about any subject.
For instance, if you’re a literature teacher, you may instruct your students on the importance of presenting a subject early in a story. Through developing a commercial, your students can learn the importance of presenting a thesis early in a story and how to capture an audience’s attention. Meanwhile, your students will learn how to collaborate, delegate specific tasks, and advertise a viable product through the engaging medium of music.
After students create their radio commercials, they’ll polish their presenting skills and share their projects with the class. If you’re not a literature teacher, don’t worry! There are still plenty of ways to adapt this project to any subject. For example, if you’re teaching a history class, your students could create a radio commercial about a specific historical event. If you’re a science teacher, students could promote their favorite scientist or explain a particular scientific process in their radio commercial.
2. Learn Abstract Concepts in a New Way
Abstract thinking is about unlocking the mind’s deeper processes and applying multiple solutions to the same problem. When educators encourage abstract thinking in the classroom, students learn how to classify objects and experiences without concrete examples.
Most teachers consider subjects as abstract or concrete. However the subject type doesn’t determine the best teaching style for each subject. Instead, each student’s learning style dictates the ideal way for you to tackle each subject. For example, many students struggle to understand how fractions work, especially when adding and subtracting fractions. Most teachers use visual aids to explain the fundamentals of fractions, but the problem is that not all students are visual learners.
Students that are auditory or hands-on learners may find it easier to grasp the fundamentals of fractions with musical notes. These activities allow students to hear the size difference between each fraction based on the length of a particular music note. After this activity, students can better understand that fractions are all around us – even in the music we listen to!
By learning abstract principles through more than one standard method, you can help your students understand what learning style works best for them.
3. Let Students Create Their Own Songs
Children and teens voraciously consume new music, so why not teach them how to make their own? Although you’re not a music teacher, easy-to-use audio production tools can add fun and excitement to your lesson plans. Additionally, music-making can spark engagement in students who may not find a particular subject interesting.
Many students hate rote memorization and boring flashcards. However, science teachers can jazz up their lesson plans by encouraging students to memorize the periodic table of elements through music. Most students will find it easier to memorize information when it is presented as a catchy song.
Of course, students in any class can create their songs. If you teach Language Arts, consider allowing students to create a song about a book they’re reading. Mathematics teachers may allow students to create songs that help them memorize essential equations. Since Soundtrap is so easy-to-use, you don’t need to be an expert audio producer to bring these activities to your classroom.
4. Let Students Dance to Their Own Music
Movement makes it easier for students to perceive elements of music that they may not hear through listening alone. After sitting down all day, students will be happy to hop out of their seats and get moving! Many students find it easier to memorize information when associating it with a specific movement, especially kinesthetic learners.
Through dance, students can experience music in a completely new way. Some students may be shy or embarrassed to dance, but this is a wonderful opportunity to encourage students to break out of their comfort zone. Soon, your students will realize that this is a safe learning environment where they can fully express themselves.
Let students collaborate and create catchy songs about the most important information using Soundtrap for Education. Then, students can create their simple dances. You may be pleasantly surprised at how much students enjoy getting out of their seats and grooving to their songs. Combining dance and music allows students to re-energize themselves and quickly pick up on new information.
Enhance Your Lesson Plans with Soundtrap for Education
Given that students are more exposed to mental stimulation than ever, maintaining their attention can be challenging. Sometimes, adding a little technology and music into the mix is just what you need to keep students engaged. Fortunately, Soundtrap for Education is made especially for a new generation of digital native students.
Soundtrap for Education is the ultimate audio production platform for students and teachers to create and edit audio recordings. Pupils and educators can easily tap into their artistic side with this intuitive audio platform. The platform facilitates a creative learning environment for every subject, regardless of the student’s age or experience level.
With Soundtrap for Education, students and teachers can collaborate through advanced cloud technology anywhere. In addition, the platform comes equipped with a robust resource portal. The portal contains an external curriculum and lesson plans to complete the educational experience. To ensure privacy, teachers can ensure that student collaboration remains secure through invite-only groups in Soundtrap’s digital environment.
If you’re ready to enhance your educational experience, get started today with Soundtrap for Education! Share this article with other teachers in your network to help spread the joy of learning through sound.