It is easy to think that if parents and teachers want children to achieve higher scores in basic subjects, like English and Maths for example, then spending more time doing English and Maths would be the answer. And to accomplish better scores in tests, drilling in test subjects will achieve that.
But according to head teacher Naveed Idrees that would be wrong. The answer lies in more music. Or rather; giving the children opportunity to practice other skills which ultimately supports their academic ones.
Many schools are crumbling under the intense pressure to achieve high Stats and consequently opportunities to study creative subjects are sacrificed in attempts to boost them.
But at Feversham school, a school that was once failing considerably according to Ofsted, the performance of the pupils has been turned around by the vision of the head who believed that more focus on results and scores wasn’t going to be the answer to improvement. It was inspiring the kids to want to be there and to motivate them and to engage them in activities that would in turn improve overall performance. He did this through adding extra hours of music and other art forms throughout their day. Read about it here.
At first parents were sceptical but when the children’s achievements began to climb, plus the overall performance of the whole school improved, they could see the benefits.
Idrees believes that children need music, singing, musical games and the arts to help them express themselves, an essential element to their mental, social and emotional wellbeing. And which will help them cope with the pressures of intense educational expectations.
There are many benefits to a child learning a musical instrument, increased brain development is one example, as shown here.
And being involved with musical activities improves understanding, social skills and opportunities in general as discussed here.
But despite this it continues to be one of the areas increasingly neglected in schools, particularly in class time. Perhaps that’s as much due to parental demand as budget or opportunity. Many parents are happy for their child to have music lessons after school or attend music clubs. But the snag with that is; not only are the kids tired after their day in school, it also demotes music to being considered solely a leisure activity rather than an important educational one.
So maybe parents, now knowing its benefits, could demand more musical opportunities for their children in whatever context their child learns. Whilst home educating families can incorporate as much musical activity in their days as they wish and enhance their children’s learning skills and achievements whilst they do so.