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Headline: Practice: Additional Strategies

Using Music in Lessons:
Creating Learning "Concerts"

Music can be an effective medium for reviewing material. Georgi Lozanov, the creator of an educational program called "Suggestopedia," discovered that one of the best ways to take in information, to synthesize it and store it in long-term memory, is through "Concerts." Lessons are transformed into stories or dialogues and set to music. (Although classical and baroque music work well, much of the "New Age" music is also very effective.) The reading is dramatic, using different emotional tones and nuances, which, when matched to music, make it more easily accessible to long-term memory. Lozanov considered the concerts to be a vital part of the learning cycle. According to Terry Wyler Webb, "Certain types of music, combined with dynamic vocal reading, act as a carrier signal within the brain, activating right hemisphere functions and hence memory encoding."

The most common kind of concert is an active one, which can be used to introduce information for the first time or can be used to review material. Active concerts are usually written as a dialogue or a story. The reader uses the music, pacing, and tone to present the material. It's as though the speaker is "surfing" on the music, using the movement to present and emphasize ideas. (For specific instructions on creating a concert see: Accelerated Learning with Music.)

With this set of materials, we have included three audio tapes which are concerts. These tapes provide easy access to some of the fundamental principles in this program. They are a fun, successful way to learn. Please feel free to use them as many times as you want.

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Before you use music in your lessons, know it well. Know how it changes, where the tempo picks up or where the emotional tonality changes.

It's important to use music to support what you're doing, but be careful that it doesn't overpower the experience.

Be very familiar with the audio equipment you use. The more smoothly you can operate it, the more smoothly the whole process will go.

Experiment as much as possible with combining music with words. Find out what works for you. Give yourself plenty of time to rehearse.

Types of Music
Accelerated Learning Systems, PO Box 140147, Dallas TX, 75214, has developed a set of classical and baroque tapes that are used in that program. They're emphasis is on classical and baroque music, but many modern pieces lend themselves well to music for relaxation, guided imagery and concerts. Lane Wass in her book, Imagine That!, recommends the works of Paul Winter, especially Common Ground and Canyon from Living Music, along with the work of George Winston. She also recommends Kitaro's work, especially Tunhuang and India, as well as Andreas Vollenweider's work, especially White Winds.


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