MUSIC MEMORY OVERVIEW
By Mollie Gregory Tower, Founder of Modern MUSIC MEMORY Program
WHAT IS MUSIC MEMORY?
MUSIC MEMORY is an active listening program designed to successfully engage all students, young and old, in attentive or mindful listening to timeless musical works. Students learn to fully concentrate on the music elements of each selection, not just to hear the sound.
Through the national award-winning curriculum program, students gain a deep understanding and appreciation of the world’s greatest music. The high quality, thorough and enjoyable music listening experiences supplement other general music experiences, and are based on powerful current brain research linking music and brain development. For example:
“The entire brain is engaged when a person listens to music.” (Zatorre and Peretz, (2001) The Biological Foundations of Music, New York, NY: New York Academy of Sciences)
“Listening to classical music modulates genes that are responsible for brain functions.” (Science Daily, March 13, 2015, University of Helsinki)
Each year, developmentally appropriate music selections are carefully chosen from the Renaissance through Contemporary historical periods, and prominent composers of orchestral, vocal, choral, band and keyboard pieces are featured. The number of selections studied - 10 for 2nd grade, 16 for 3rd–6th grade, and 20 for Middle School – varies by grade level.
In addition to learning the melodies, students study musical terms, definitions, instrumental and vocal tone colors, musical form, and the historical and cultural significance of the music. They develop critical thinking, pattern recognition and creative expression skills. MUSIC MEMORY helps young listeners achieve goals aligned with state and national standards for music education.
WHEN DID MUSIC MEMORY BEGIN?
The original MUSIC MEMORY listening program was created in 1918 and was taught in school districts across the country. It was very successful, but gradually disappeared during the Depression years and WWII.
The modern MUSIC MEMORY program was founded in Austin, TX in 1980 with the collaboration of Mollie Gregory Tower and her father, Malcolm Gregory. He shared his experiences in the MUSIC MEMORY program taught in 1922 and ‘23 in his Austin elementary school. A remarkable team of Austin music educators took ideas from the original program and added the brand new concept (at that time) of creating visual guides, or “listening maps” to reach visual learners. The modern MUSIC MEMORY program has once again expanded to be taught across the country. (See HISTORY tab for more information.)
SKILLED LISTENING MAP CREATORS AND ANIMATORS BRING THE MUSIC TO LIFE!
Our new teaching components deliver the MUSIC MEMORY curriculum using 21st Century technology! Experienced music educators create beautiful computerized listening maps to guide the listener through the music and engage the digital age visual learner. Color static maps are provided as PDF files to provide flexibility - project them digitally in the classroom or make copies for each student.
Professional animators who work in the video game industry create VideoMaps™, animated versions of the listening maps that highlight themes, melodic contour, rhythms, instrumentation and form through the art of animation. The VideoMaps™ provide visual and aural learners with a totally engaging learning experience to help them easily understand how the music selection is constructed.
In MightyLessonKits©, the VideoMaps™ are surrounded by a mini-lesson with composer picture, video mini-lesson with concepts to be learned from the music, and a Quick Quiz with three questions for full-class review.
To focus on the needs of kinesthetic learners, the visual/aural learning experience is then reinforced with movement activities created just for our program. Videos of these movement activities are available on our MIGHTY MUSIC MEMORY YouTube Channel!
MUSIC MEMORY helps prepare discriminating and well-informed listeners for a lifetime of musical experiences. Mighty Music Publishing Company is working to bring every aspect of our MUSIC MEMORY materials, published over the last 17 years, to an even higher level in order to assist you in giving your students a life-long love of classical music.
Our MUSIC MEMORY materials provide everything you need to effectively teach this innovative listening program in music classes, after-school clubs or community-based programs. The materials will greatly enhance your school or district listening instruction. In addition, Mighty Music Publishing offers everything needed to provide successful preparation for the Texas University Interscholastic League (UIL) District meet, Texas Private School Interscholastic Association (PSIA) District or All-State meet, or local MUSIC MEMORY Contest. MUSIC MEMORY products are created in cooperation with UIL and PSIA.
Our amazing 482-page Teacher’s Guide is offered in a digital all-disc version as well as the original print version. Packages include the following features for this year’s all new selections for Grades 2-8:
Teacher's Guide in an easy-to-read format. Enhanced Lessons for every selection: easy to follow, with engaging, developmentally appropriate activities and extensions.
Audio Files: Music Tracks of specially selected, fabulous performances are on CD 1. Also included is a Theme Bank section for each selection.
Redesigned, High-Resolution Maps: Full color maps included in all packages as PDF files for projection or to print.
Animated VideoMaps™ for all selections. Multi-media presentation engages students through the use of 21st Century technology.
MUSIC IN THE MORNING SCRIPTS to use in presenting selections every morning over the intercom or in full-school morning assemblies. Providing access for your whole school to the great music included in the MUSIC MEMORY curriculum can enrich the entire school learning environment and increase students' classroom listening skills.
Spanish translations are available for the "BACKGROUND" page for all selections.
Robust Assessments Throughout! For Texas students, test formats support STAAR testing through the use of STAAR testing format. Students practice comprehension and writing skills. CD 2 provides testing assistance - each assessment is on a separate CD track with test sheets and answer sheets provided in the Teacher's Guide. Multiple tests provide pre-post test options and frequent formative assessment opportunities. Assessments are provided in two formats: (1) with printed titles and (2) with picture icons to support younger students, mainstreamed students and English Language Learners.
Inexpensive Student Practice CDs and Handbooks are available with purchase of a Teacher's Guide Package. They provide independent practice, become a lifelong companion, and support reading in the content area.
Background Pages with Composer and Music information and Reader’s Theater Scripts in reproducible form to support reading skills - Reader’s Theater Scripts help students learn how to speak about music from a range of perspectives and support comprehension skills.
Composer portraits, decorative wall charts included to support visual literacy
Test forms and answer sheets provided in two formats in the Teacher’s Guide, with test listening excerpts included on CD 2
Authentic assessment options and curriculum links provide opportunities for diverse learning styles and higher order thinking experiences
Correlations with National Music Standards, TEKS and Common Core State Standards included
Developmentally appropriate supporting resource masters - reinforce creative thinking skills for all music selections
We welcome you and your students to a year of joyful listening! Our goal is to provide students with positive musical experiences that last a lifetime.