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A Cultural Psychology of Music Education$
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Margaret S. Barrett

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199214389

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199214389.001.0001

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Making music or playing instruments: secondary students’ use of cultural tools in aural- and notation-based instrumental learning and teaching

Making music or playing instruments: secondary students’ use of cultural tools in aural- and notation-based instrumental learning and teaching

Chapter:
(p.115) Chapter 6 Making music or playing instruments: secondary students’ use of cultural tools in aural- and notation-based instrumental learning and teaching
Source:
A Cultural Psychology of Music Education
Author(s):

Cecilia Hultberg

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199214389.003.0006

This chapter discusses students' ways of using cultural tools in aural-based and notation-based instrumental music lessons. It examines two teachers' ways of working — one in a notation-based music environment, the other in an aural-based music environment — in order to illustrate the complex interplay between, and varying functions of, tools and artefacts such as notated (printed scores) and aural (performances) presentations of musical works. It considers the ways in which these teachers draw on their knowledge as culture bearers of the musical (Western classical music and Zimbabwean marimba ensemble respectively) and pedagogical (Suzuki piano instruction and aural-based group teaching) traditions within which they work, in order to use notated, aural, and embodied presentations of the music to prompt student thought and practical activity. In these environments, the teachers use student performances as cultural tools for reflection and understanding in their own learning as teachers, as well as that of their students. The chapter also illustrates the varying functions a musical instrument might play in students' learning, as, for example, a mechanical tool for practising or experiencing specific aspects of technique, or as a cultural tool for the expression of musical meaning.

Keywords:   cultural tools, musical instruments, instrumental learning, student performances, student learning

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