Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Update and Music

I am still around, and still planning to update this blog.  In the time since I last posted, we've had two birthday parties, two birthdays, two week-long colds, and have begun our fall routines.  Somebody in the family has something going on every weeknight.  With this busy schedule, I haven't been getting online very much at home.  Instead, I've been burying myself in good novels, and we've caught up on the past two seasons of Glee.

I have begun the comparison between 1632 and Island In the Sea of Time, as promised some time ago, however the post is running very long and requires more editing.  At the least, I may split the post into two or three.  So I'll spare you that rambling until I'm satisfied that it makes good sense.

In my particular brand of Geek Feminism, I'm a fan of science fiction and/or fantasy novels written by women.  Anne McCaffrey, Mercedes Lackey, Jennifer Roberson, A.C. Crispin, Diane Duane, Tara K. Harper, Jane Yolen, Tamora Pierce... just to name a few.

Not that I like everything they write.   But generally.

So lately I've been catching up on Anne McCaffrey's Dragonriders of Pern series.  Anne's novels are frequently infused with musical themes, and on Pern, the Harpers have become the keepers of knowledge and everyone's teachers.  As I re-read, it occurs to me that this concept of teaching EVERYTHING through music has heavily influenced my educational philosophies.

It's late at night, and this was intended to be a quick post, so perhaps another time I will update with the scholarly research showing music's impact on memory and learning, language, mathematics, etc.  Instead I'll leave you with this anecdote, a police officer once said, about how when they gave sobriety tests, and asked adults to recite the alphabet, most adults resorted to the Alphabet Song.  They had learned it through song, and remembered it through song.

UPDATE: I love having librarian friends.  One of my friends posted a link to this article today:

Musical Aptitude Relates to Reading Ability: in short, our ability to hear and respond to melody and rhythm (in music) improves our ability to read.

Which led to others:

How Music Training Primes Nervous System and Boosts Learning:

Time Invested In Practicing Pays Off For Young Musicians, Research Shows

Simply Listening To Music Affects One’s Musicality