15 October 2018

Switching On Learning with Music in 8.1T

It has been known for many centuries that certain types of music induce a state of deep relaxation in which memorising long historical stories occurs almost magically. In ancient times, long stories were recited to heartbeat rhythms. When we listen to one-beat-per-second instrumental music, our heartbeat synchronises, our bodies relax, and our brains have a greater proportion of alpha and theta waves. In this state we are amazingly receptive and learning occurs rapidly.

This term in 8.1T we have been trialling this idea by occasionally having soft, background classical music playing. In Humanities, the boys have had a research assignment to do and in English, they have been working on some creative writing pieces. Both of these have required the boys to utilise their class time concentrating and working individually. In an attempt to encourage the boys to move into a state where their minds and bodies are calm and relaxed, we have been listening to some Beethoven and Bach classics. Whilst at first this met with some groans and complaints from the boys, it has been interesting to observe how quickly and quietly they settled into their work.

This is just one of the many switch-ons for the brain that we are using, to encourage a state of relaxed readiness in which learning and performance is more easily achieved.

Mrs Tracey FitzPatrick
8.1T Homeroom Teacher