Date: Friday, July 15, 2016
Participants (from 10 countries):
USA: Rick | Morocco: Imad | Iran: Hanieh, Elham, Noorola, Zeinab, Amir | Tunisia: Marwa, Amin | Kurdistan: Suren | Algeria: Soso. Laro | Azerbaijan: Salima | Belarus: Marina | Indonesia: Atilla | Russia: Oleg
Panel PRO (Team A): Hanieh. Elham, Zeinab, Suren. Heytham, Marina, Amir.
Panel CON (Team B): Noorola, Salima, Amin.
Audience (Team C): Seif, Marwa, Soso, Imad, Atilla, Oleg.
Listening only: Laro.
Team A summary
Elham: “Why not?” It’s a good idea to give students the chance to get familiar with these things and learn about it. It’s a great opportunity for them to discover their talents. Many parents don’t allow children to engage themselves in these activities so this is a good opportunity for them and maybe they will end up being great artists.
It is a nice way to make students develop their creativity and concentration.
Hanieh: Some of these things can have some advantages for example in medicine, music is used as therapy. It can reduce the pain, it can be relaxing and in general they have some benefits. Some internet articles say that music can increase students IQ and self-confidence.
Many people don’t know if they want to be a musician or an artist if they have never gotten any experience about it. If students like the subject, it can keep these students in schools.
Suren: Arts and Music are different as subjects. Art is easier to integrate in the curriculums but Music is different. Music is relaxing and it gives energy which can release the stress of having to memorize so many different things at school.
In the Kurdistan region, as subject, Arts is common but Music is a new and rare thing and hence, it could be very interesting for Students.
Zeinab: By having these subjects students can enhance their abilities with their hands and fingers which will help them in other areas. Music can help students to learn a language like when babies learn new words through some music. Some statistics observe that children who play some instrument have a higher IQ than children who haven’t.
It can bring a happier environment in the classroom instead of just sitting and memorize things from teachers. Children enjoy learning things when is done through music.
Heytham: Some countries are successful in terms of education because they focus on factors that make students love their schools.
There are many benefits for the students such as improving their creativity, encouraging brainstorming and critical thinking.
Marina: It’s necessary since Music help people tolerate the difficulties that life has and it makes it be more colorful. Schools put much pressure on students so Music helps them be more relaxed. Arts help people have better articulation in their hands. Some people lack of knowledge when it comes to Art and Artists to the extent that when there is a conversation about it, people feel uncomfortable due to the lack of knowledge.
Amir: (After reading something from someone else, he agrees that Arts is very important.)
Team B summary
Salima: Music and Arts in Azerbaijan are part of the curriculums already; however, these subjects should not be taught in the same way since they are very different and they require different set of skills and long periods of time in practicing it in order to pass exams. Some institutes give these subjects too much importance to the point that students have to resort in seeking help and tuitions from very expensive conservatories and places alike.
A normal classroom has many students and students don’t really get to appreciate the lesson or the subject since there are too many students and it’s difficult to teach such subjects when there are a large number of students. It can get really noisy and irritant. Too much happiness can also be negative since students get noisy, they run, speak loudly, throw papers to each other, etc. and it’s difficult to control it.
It is a waste of time to teach these things when there are students have no talent or skills (Music for instance) because there can be only a few that can really play an instrument, paint or sing. These subjects require special skills and if there are such talented kids in the class, teachers cannot lend them the instrument for too long because they are afraid that the student can break them.
Music and Arts are very nice and important, but if people feel affinity towards these things they should go to specialized places where they can receive proper training and leave Schools for things that anyone can learn and let’s not make our children waste their time.
Noorola: Music and Arts are very important and useful but not all the time. Every student will play a role in the society in the future and they should learn things and use their talents and skills for things that will help them perform their jobs well.
People can be successful in their future without having to learn Music or Arts at schools. Some schools can have them as optional, but not a requirement.
Amin: Music is important but it should be optional, not obligatory. Students who already have talents in other areas, such as sports, will be affected negatively in their performance because we would be taking their time to practice and do things that will not help them at all. Let’s keep it as a choice for the student, not a requirement.
Team C summary
Marwa: Many people feel passion towards Music or Arts and they can be very good at it but the question here is whether they have to be part of the curriculum or not. These Subjects can help students be more cooperative, more social, reduce their stress and even change their lives.
Soso: Music and Arts came into being first as something innate and it makes people happy and since it’s something that it’s innate and not all can have either the talent or the skills, we should not put them as obligatory in all schools. Nonetheless, if parents realize their kids have something special, they can send them to specialized private schools that treat these subjects in a much more professional way.
If we implement these subjects as obligatory in all schools, in times of evaluation the students who are not talented or have a lack of artistic ability can get bad scores and not pass the exam and this can affect their future.
The bottom line is that not all people have the same talent and making it obligatory can be a bad idea.
Imad: Team A was very persuasive with points such as helping students with the language, help them memorize things, increase coordination and students can learn about other people’s feeling while listening to their music or the with way they sing.
On the other hand, as team B pointed out, Music and Arts is important and a very good idea for children to learn but it should be kept as an extracurricular activity because the curriculum should only be for things that are much more important than Arts and keep these Music and Arts as just entertainment.
- Marwa remained neutral.
- Soso voted for team B.
- Imad remained neutral.
Team B won this debate.
Rick’s take away:
The points brought up by team A were very important in terms of it can enhance creative thinking; it can help your self-confidence. Most of the projects tend to be group projects, especially if you are in a band. They all have to work together as a team so there are a lot of benefits. In the US most schools have extracurricular subjects that are optional for students and the idea is that students wouldn’t know in what they are good at unless they are exposed to it but they are not mandatory. Ultimately, Schools should make these subjects available as part of their curriculum because students should be given the opportunity but that doesn’t mean students must take them. It should be optional for the students whether they want to take them or not.
Thanks everyone for participating. Below are the links to listen to this discussion.