Sunday, June 28, 2015

Schools Need More Friction, Less Fractions

"When we truly teach young people how to think, we teach them how to be themselves with so much authenticity and confidence they will never need transformation or reinvention or rebranding because they have already become all of themselves"
The real problem with education is that we've forgotten what it means to "think." Connecting familiar ideas in unexpected ways, Jordan Shapiro explains why learning needs to be irrational. Learn what transformation, gratitude, noticing, relationships, yoga, and muscle articulation have to do with the future of school. Jordan Shapiro’s academic work and publishing blend psychology, philosophy, and business in surprising ways. His internationally celebrated writing on education, parenting, and game-based learning can be found on He teaches in Temple University's Intellectual Heritage Department where he’s also the Digital Learning Coordinator.
-- Read "5 Rarely Considered Obstacles To 21st Century Education"on Forbes

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Let Love Rule

Peace Day is not that far away - don't forget September 21st!!!

"Love is gentle as a rose
And love can conquer any war
It's time to take a stand
Brothers and sisters join hands
We got to let love rule / Let love rule / We got to let love rule / Let love rule 
Love transcends all space and time
And love can make a little child smile
Oh can't you see
This won't go wrong
But we got to be strong
We can't do it alone"

-- Go to Lenny Kravitz website
-- Go to Peace One Day website

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Nurturing creative intelligence through music

"If our society is to solve the immense challenges that faces, I believe a new model of education has to emerge, in which imagining becomes more important than accumulating and creating is valued more than consuming. And I think the best way to do this is through music. With the kind of innovation performance technology that is available today we can make exciting music programs for all kids, and in doing so we can change the world"
Learning how to dream, to imagine, unlocks our creativity, driving and nurturing the learning process through the arts. Dr Ed Bilous shares his insight on how creative thinking has always been a critical part of being human since our earliest ancestors first walked the Earth. Bilous began his career in education in 1978 as a member of the original group of teaching-artists at the newly created Lincoln Center Institute. Together with colleagues in drama and dance he helped to define the basic cannon of aesthetic education practices that continue to inspire students and teachers around the world. He has been on the faculty of the Juilliard School since 1984 and has developed many of the institutions most innovative programs including the Arts and Education Program, the Center for Innovation in the Arts and Beyond the Machine -- A Festival of Multimedia and Interdisciplinary Art. In 2015, with support from the Muriel McBrien Kauffman Foundation and the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts, Dr. Bilous will launch the Miracle of Music, a series of multimedia concert events, innovative curriculum and interactive media designed to use the power of digital technology to advance music education and nurture creative intelligence in young children. VERY INTERESTING TALK.
-- Listen to his lecture "Reimagining Arts Education"

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Music Education And The Brain

Inspired by a young teacher at a music educators conference, Dr Anita Collins commissioned a short film to be made to help music educators, parents and students understand the benefits of music education. The film includes interviews with a prominent neuroscientists, innovative music educators and students. The basis for the film is Anita's research into the benefits of music education for academic performance, social skills and well-being, literacy and numeracy skills, improved life outcomes and brain and physical health in later life. Anita has worked as a primary and secondary school music educator in both Australia and England. Her broad experience encompasses classroom and instrumental teaching, curriculum design and musical conducting of concert band, orchestral and choral groups and specialist and generalist teacher education. She is currently Assistant Professor of Music and Arts Education at the University of Canberra.
- Watch Anita's TED talk "What if every child had access to music education from birth?"

Monday, June 15, 2015


In 2011, Playing For Change joined forces with the United Nations Population Fund and the Millennium Development Goals Achievement Fund for UNFPA 7 Billion Actions campaign. By the end of that year, the world population reached 7 billion, and that global campaign strove to bring awareness to the opportunities and challenges that the population growth would present. 7 billion people means 7 billion hearts, and music has always been the best way to speak to the hearts of the people. They traveled across the globe, put headphones on musicians, added them to the track, and created UNITED, which serves as a tangible example of something positive we can all do together as a human race.
-- original video here

"United" live in Lyon with Orchestre Confluences featuring Tal Ben Ari (Tula) | Playing For Change from Playing For Change on Vimeo.


"The beauty of doesn't have necessarily to be professionally for everybody.. my family did it for enjoyment.. I still do it for enjoyment, I got lucky.. I know for a fact that there was never an ounce of me wanting to play music to be famous"
Vincent Gill is an American country singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist. He was the front man for several country music bands before going solo in 1983. Vince has sold more than 26 million albums and earned 18 CMA awards, and is tied for having won the most CMA Male Vocalist Awards. He is a member of the Grand Ole Opry and the Country Music Hall of Fame, and has received 19 GRAMMY awards to date, the most of any male country artist. Besides being known for his talent as a performer, Vince is regarded as one of country music's best known humanitarians, participating in hundreds of charitable events throughout his career. Here he talks to the NAMM Foundation about what music means to him. Click on image below to listen to interview.
- Download NAMM's brochure "WHY LEARN TO PLAY MUSIC?"

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Creative Arts in Education

For a long time, the creative arts were losing ground in schools and universities to skills considered to be more useful and lucrative in competitive global markets. However, that tendency is beginning to reverse and educational establishments are changing their approaches to learning, sometimes quite radically, by giving more room to arts, sports and creativity in the curriculum. It is now being realised that encouraging creativity contributes greatly to producing balanced citizens who are capable of thinking independently, challenging conventional wisdom and understanding others. Professor John Tarrant retired as Secretary General of the Association of Commonwealth Universities (ACU) in June 2010.

Friday, June 05, 2015

The New Math Of Musical Education

Todd Rundgren (Spirit of harmony Foundation) pays a visit to Northwestern University's Auditory Science Lab, learning about ground breaking research being conducted by Dr. Nina Kraus, supported, in part by Dr. Margret Martin and her Harmony Project.

Thursday, June 04, 2015

Make Music Day - June 21

Make Music is a free celebration of music around the world on June 21st. Launched in 1982 in France as the FĂȘte de la Musique, it is now held on the same day in more than 700 cities in 120 countries. Completely different from a typical music festival, Make Music is open to anyone who wants to take part. Every kind of musician — young and old, amateur and professional, of every musical persuasion — pours onto streets, parks, plazas, and porches to share their music with friends, neighbors, and strangers. All of it is free and open to the public.


Just Play is NAMM Foundation's Campaign to share the Power of Music.
Latest 2015 PSA campaign, "The Original Social Network" released on March 2015, encourages people to "Connect," "Share," "Comment," and "Like" by joining the original social network...MUSIC! The footage and music featured in this piece were created by NPR Music and Red Baraat on Make Music Day, June 21, 2014. 350 people gathered for the first time to play a song that Sunny Jain composed specifically for this NPR Field Recording. No one in the crowd had performed the song before. And these 350 people had never played together. No one knew if people would show up or how it would sound. But it did work and sounds great! The joy, community and energy you see in this video are from an authentic experience showing people truly connecting through music.

Wednesday, June 03, 2015

The Moral Imperative of Music Education

The Spirit of Harmony Foundation, Todd Rundgren’s non-profit organization, supports the moral imperative of music education and music performance for youth. They advocate for music education, beginning at the earliest age possible, offered in schools or as after-school programs. The Foundation weaves together the social, biological, economic, and academic benefits accrued to students who are involved in consistent instrument-based music education. They believe in providing opportunities for personal development and self-expression through the support of music and music education for young people regardless of socioeconomic status, geographic location, or ability.
Todd Rundgren is a musician, songwriter, and record producer. In nearly 50 years as a bellweather of the music industry, Rundgren has produced an abundant and diverse range of recordings, as a solo artist and as a member of the band Utopia and various collaborations including Ringo’s All-Starr Band.
Arkansas Educational TV produced the piece below about the Symposium for the Moral Imperative of Music Education, hosted by The Clinton School of Public Service with title sponsorship from The NAMM Foundation.

Music in Schools - Richard Page

"I can only say that music in schools really helped define me...concert choir, band, all these things were just such an inspiration, really gave me a direction, gave me a knowledge of what I wanted to do with my life, so I cannot say more of how important is to have music in schools"
As a member of Ringo's All-Starr Band, Richard Page shares his thoughts on music, the important role his parents played and his early music education.

Tuesday, June 02, 2015

Rehabilitation through the Arts

Rehabilitation through the Arts was founded in Sing Sing in 1996. Today, they work in five New York State prisons with innovative programs in theatre, dance, creative writing, voice and visual art. RTA is dedicated to using the creative arts as a tool for social and cognitive transformation behind prison walls. Originally Rehabilitation Through The Arts was the dream of a few men in Sing Sing who wanted to write and produce a play and needed help putting it all together. It was a play about subjects they knew only too well: gangs, violence, drugs and HIV/AIDS, but it was also about remorse, redemption and hope. It celebrated the human spirit and the goodness that is in each and every one of us. It became the foundation for RTA. The arts can change lives!

Monday, June 01, 2015

STEM and the Liberal Arts Were a Power Couple...

... Let’s Get Them Back Together!
In its ancient origins, the liberal education featured science as an abstract elective rather than a practical subject that would net you a job. Science was studied for stimulation, to attempt to grasp truths about the universe. The current mindset that science leads to a career while English and other liberal arts are subjects for stimulation is a very modern concept. Journalist Fareed Zakaria explains that we should continue to prioritize liberal arts and subjects such as English, history, and rhetoric for the same reasons why our predecessors valued science before it became practical or fashionable to do so (from Big Think)
Fareed Zakaria has been called “the most influential foreign policy adviser of his generation” (Esquire). He is author of the new book "In Defense of a Liberal Education".