Reflecting on the connection between music and memory

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Random Musings and Reflections by Terry Roper

Today, while driving to work, I dropped the last disc of my audio book, [yes, still using physical CDs checked out from public library :)] and facing a long, tortuously slow drive, I twisted around and upside down [while at the red light, mind you] seeking the lost disc.  I pulled up a disc from the depths of my under seat region and discovered an old Linda Ronstadt CD left over from an earlier life so, naturally I plugged it in and really enjoyed listening to old tunes from my go-to “heartbreak” album.  The songs were great but the experience was oddly disconcerting as I kept feeling twinges of memory ingrained into this music that came back to me as I was listening.

This led me to reflect on the connection between music and memory, how you can listen to a song that imprinted on you at some distinct point in your life and remember distinct impressions from that time.   As an educator, I started thinking about my own elementary school experience and music class.  I still remember Miss J, very prim and proper carting autoharps and flutophones and triangles with nary a misstep.  I have visceral memories of strumming the autoharp that I will carry forever.

Think of the power of this connection!  As educators, we can capitalize on helping students associate learning with music in helpful ways.

Music matters, people.  Play some today in your classroom!   flutophone

Terry Roper

Terry Roper

Terry Roper, Library Consultant for Region 10 ESC. has been an educator/librarian in the North Texas area for 22 years. She has worked on elementary and high school campuses as well as central administration. Ms. Roper has experience dealing with English language learners of all levels and works closely with the Region 10 Literacy Team. Terry loves dealing with literacy and information dissemination and talking about book stuff!

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