Literacy in Music

By March 13, 2016 BlogPost 2 Comments

I was thinking back to one of the presentations that we had last Wednesday (I can’t remember for the life of me who it was that presented it, so I’m really sorry about that). It was in reference to music, and the literacy that is a part of it.

I grew up playing a fair number of instruments so I have the background in music that added understanding to the presentation. However, I was truly baffled by how much overlap there truly is between music, notation, and human language as it exists outside of music.

I asked a question about whether or not the presenter thought that music was a second language, and they agreed with me by saying yes. I was also particularly fascinated by the ways in which notation can be analyzed side by side with lingual auditory sounds evident in the english and other languages. If there ever was a case for the argument that music is merely another language, than that might be some of the best proof out there.

But I have a question for the rest of the class, particularly anyone who also had learning difficulties growing up or problems with another language: where there ever times in your life where the practice and the act of listening to music ever aided you in your learning endeavors? If so, how?


  • Ashley says:

    I’ve always had auditory difficulties– from learning languages to remembering verbal instructions. I need something else to “stick” to the words. Visuals work the best, but songs work too. Most the of the bits of foreign languages I can remember were songs. It sounds contradictory, because spoken words and words sung are both auditory, but I think the ‘physical’ action of performing the song aids in learning and retention.

  • Shaquawnna V Shaquawnna V says:

    I have definite issues with anxiety while preparing for or actually giving oral presentations. One of the things that has calmed me a certain extent in the past has been to listen to music right before the presentation. This does not include the typical “psyche out” fist-pumping inspirational music, but instead slower paced music with singing. It puts me into a completely different reality and helps tremendously.

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