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Professional readings


Music – Sound Arts

A Culturally Responsive Pedagogy of Relations

Russell Bishop is Professor of Māori Education at the University of Waikato and director of Te Kotahitanga. Russell talks about the need to provide a classroom context where caring and learning relationships paramount to the educational performance of Maori students can be developed.

Ako - Senior Secondary Teaching and Learning Guides for the Arts

Examples of ako in arts classrooms. Ako involves reciprocal shared learning in the classroom and beyond.

Arts Crucial to Critical Thinking

Under the broad title Thinking Ahead on the Sagamore Institute’s Policy Research site this article discusses why arts should be central to education initiatives with reference to presentations by Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee and Sir Ken Robinson.

Community Character: how arts and cultural strategies create reinforce and enhance sense of place (1.60 MB)

Arts and culture strategies help to reveal and enhance the underlying identity - the unique meaning value and character - of the physical and social form of a community. This identity is reflected through the community’s character or sense of place.

Constructing Youth Engagement (PDF 197KB)

This Kansas report (26 pages) contains a review of literature regarding student engagement a list of indicators of engagement the kinds of techniques that artists use to engage students and reasons for why the arts engage students. Interview questions for artists and students are provided in the Appendix.

Craft in an Age of Change

A report confirms that Scotland’s craft makers continue to be optimistic and adaptable working within a sector that while changing remains healthy robust and contributes income of £70 million to the Scottish economy.

Creative Commons

Creative Commons (CC) provides free tools that let authors scientists artists and educators easily mark their creative work with the freedoms they want it to carry. You can use CC to change your copyright terms from "All Rights Reserved" to "Some Rights Reserved."


On this site you will find hundreds of documentaries that have been found on the web all in one place all ready to watch. Particularly useful for visual arts and art history.

Education World Arts Chats

This chat site involves Robin C. Redmond associate director of the Center for Arts Policy Colombia College Chicago who is arguing the relevance and importance of the Arts being used as an integrated teaching/learning tool. He also advocates the involvement of community artists.

Engaging Boys in the Arts

An article that discusses the problem of the "missing males" in the arts. In studying the cause of this trend it discusses the construction of masculinity in the arts through societal forces including the media school influences peer expectations parental wishes teacher attitudes and texts. It also refers in detail to the nature of stereotypes that prevent boys from participating in the arts.

From Hip-Hop to Shakespeare: Dallas Blazes “Coordinated” Trail in Arts Education for City Young People

This Wallace-written feature examines the “Thriving Minds” initiative which aims to improve arts education for Dallas’ children especially the poorest. The effort a response to decades of decline in arts education across urban schools coordinates the work of schools city agencies cultural institutions and other groups involved in arts learning.

Gifted & Talented Online

This New Zealand TKI site has a page for resources relating to The Arts and gifted students.

Gifts of the Muse: Reframing the Debate About the Benefits of the Arts

This report challenges the prevailing view that the arts have public value because they promote the “instrumental” benefits of broad social and economic goals such as economic growth and better academic performance. The study commissioned by The Wallace Foundation offers a new framework for understanding the value of the arts. The authors consider intrinsic benefits such as aesthetic pleasure and captivation in addition to having private personal value play a central role in the generation of arts benefits to the public realm.

Guide to Electronic Music

Everything you always wanted to know about electronic music including news reviews interviews party reports artist profiles label profiles diaries tutorials and links. There is an interactive forum and chat site and a FAQ area.

Guidelines for Publishing Student Work

These are New Zealand Ministry of Education guidelines for schools for the online publication of student images and schoolwork.

Harmony Project

Harmony Project uses music education to provide students with the skills and resources needed to thrive in school, in their community, and in life. They are LA’s largest music education organisation dedicated exclusively to youth from low-income families and under-resourced communities. 

Historical music

Examples of historical music in the community.

Home of Poi

A website which has some interesting information about poi to supplement what might be gained from other resources. Check out the links as well. Suitable for primary and/or secondary programmes.

Home Recording Connection

A very full resource site for those interested in home recording. Articles include; Computer Based Do It Yourself Effects & Signal Processing Miking Techniques Mixing and Multitracking Music on the Internet Premastering & Mastering Product Reviews Songwriting Suggested Books Suggested Magazines.

How the Arts Impact Communities (PDF)

This paper prepared for the Taking the Measure of Culture Conference is by Joshua Guetzkow. In it he considers issues that need to be addressed when thinking about and studying how the arts impact communities and provides an introduction to the literature on arts impact studies. Published by Princeton University Center for Arts and Cultural Policy Studies 2002.

ICT and Arts Education - A Literature Review (PDF 650KB)

This literature review was carried out by Merryn Dunmill and Azra Arslanagic of Te Puna Puoru National Centre for Research in Music Education and Sound Arts University of Canterbury in July 2006 for the New Zealand Ministry of Education. The review sought to find Australasian research (and research from other comparative education systems) on the positve impact of ICT on student achievement and teaching in the arts.

Improved Learning through Piano Instruction

A McGill University study found that pattern recognition and mental representation scores improved significantly for students given piano instruction over a three-year period. They also found that self-esteem and musical skills measures improved for the students given piano instruction. Presented at the meeting of the Music Educators National Conference Phoenix AZ April 1998

Increasing Arts Demand Through Better Arts Learning

This summary of Wallace-commissioned research examines efforts to rebuild arts learning for American city children through the coordinated work of schools and other groups. It also explores how more and better arts education could boost demand for the arts.

Incredible India (PDF 1.6MB) (1.60 MB)

This 2007 report from Merryn Dunmill an Asia New Zealand Foundation "Linking Latitudes" conference delegate includes information about the Indian Arts Curriculum and state of education and society in the complex and diverse "many Indias" of today.

Instrumental Instruction Improves Academic Achievement

University studies conducted in Georgia and Texas found significant correlations between the number of years of instrumental music instruction and academic achievement in math science and language arts. University of Sarasota Study Jeffrey Lynn Kluball; East Texas State University Study Daryl Erick Trent

Integrated Arts Programme - Arizona

This video and accompanying materials describe and justify an arts-integration programme in primary schools. While the programme relies on visiting arts specialists in the classroom there are ideas and rubrics that could be adapted by generalists.

Intellectual Property in Technology Teaching

Although contextualised in the teaching and learning of Technology the case study materials confidentiality agreements and information about IP and student work on this site are useful and important considerations for arts contexts.


This site explores the history of jazz and how it is intertwined with the history of America. It refers to some of the social and cultural events that impacted on jazz music from the 1800s to the 1960s and includes audio and visual recordings of different styles of jazz and musicians and allows you to play along on a virtual piano.

Journal of Film Music

The Journal of Film Music contains a number of reviews and articles related to film music. A number of these can be downloaded for free.

Journal of the Society for Musicology in Ireland

Ka Hikitia - Managing for Success: The Māori Education Strategy 2008 - 2012

Ka Hikitia - Managing for Success: The Māori Education Strategy 2008 - 2012 is the Ministry of Education's approach to improving the performance of the education system for and with Māori. It is a key aspect of having a quality education system where all students are succeeding and achieving.

Literacy Online

Literacy Online is the New Zealand site to help primary and secondary teachers develop teaching and learning programmes across all learning areas based on the literacy needs of their learners.

Making Music with Special Needs Children

Making music with special needs children – strategies for non-specialist teachers is a New Zealand paper written to help teachers and other carers to successfully involve children with special needs in regular classroom music and to use the medium of music to encourage such children to develop many other important skills.

Manaakitanga - Senior Secondary Teaching and Learning Guides for the Arts

Examples of manaakitanga in arts classrooms. Mannaakitanga is about values of integrity trust sincerity and equity. Through manaakitanga the teacher and fellow students recognise and affirm the identity of each student in open and trusting relationships.

Multi-Modality in a New Key: The Significance of the Arts in Research and Education

This paper considers multi-modality and the use of non-verbal symbolic expression. It describes two studies and illustrates how children use multi-modal expression to interpret construct and manipulate symbols in art music and storytelling.

Music and Audio Institute of New Zealand

MAINZ is a division of Tai Poutini Polytechnic (Auckland and Christchurch) offering programmes in Audio Engineering Contemporary Music Performance Live Sound and Event Production Music Event Management and Foundation Sound and Music. Short courses in DJing Songwriting Logic Audio and professional courses for teachers are also offered across New Zealand.

Music Australia

Music Australia is the only organisation in Australia devoted to music in its entirety. They are a 50-member national umbrella body with activities spanning education, community and the professional industry. They deliver campaigns, information, resources, sector networking, community engagement, a national school music participation program, and demonstration projects.

Music CD Reviews

More than 5000 links plus thousands of CD reviews and recommendations.

Music Education at Questia

Research music education at the world's largest online library - Questia.

Music Education Online

This Indiana University School of Music site links to a comprehensive range of music journals and magazines newspapers and articles.

Music to Our Ears

In the past because written music requires basic music literacy the songs that children created on the spur of the moment were difficult to record replicate or edit. This article explores how technology has solved that problem by providing a number of inexpensive ways in which children can write and record their own music. Learn how fifth graders at California's Village School composed original rondos and created their own CD.


This large site covers general history of musicals dance in musicals how to put on a musical and much more.

Musicals for Children

Gary Daverne is a composer of a wide range of highly successful musicals for school age children. His site provides information useful to all schools.


Māori Music Library Guide

This page from Wellington City Libraries Te Matapahi Ki Te Ao Nui site presents key books recordings and links relating to Māori music.

National Education Monitoring Project Assessment Results: Music

This report presents details and results of the 2008 NEMP assessments in music years 4 and 8.

NEMP 2004 Music Assessment Results

In 2004 the second year of the third cycle of national monitoring three areas were assessed: music aspects of technology and reading and speaking. This report presents details and results of the assessments in music.

New Zealand Arts Strategy

The Arts Strategy 2006-08 is underpinned by the objectives of the Schooling Strategy: Making a Bigger Difference for all Students (www.minedu.govt.nz/goto/schoolingstrategy). The strategy focuses on improved outcomes for teachers and students by ensuring all resources face to face and online support networks are cohesive and effective. It will build on the focused professional development offered to teachers through School Support Services and on published materials that have supported the implementation of The Arts in the New Zealand Curriculum.

New Zealand Curriculum Resource Bank

This tool organises resources and information that support professional learning and leadership as schools implement The New Zealand Curriculum. There is a selection of resources for The Arts in this database.

New Zealand Disability Strategy

The New Zealand Disability Strategy's vision is of a society that highly values the lives and continually enhances the full participation of disabled people. It provides a framework to guide government agencies making policy and services impacting on disabled people. In taking the lead the Government will do everything possible to influence the attitudes and behaviour of society as a whole. By all New Zealanders considering issues facing people with disabilities and their aspirations New Zealand can become a fully inclusive society.

New Zealand Folk Song

This website is a great resource for finding New Zealand songs and waiata.

New Zealand Music

An online community featuring profiles songs and videos from nearly every band in the country. Also latest music news and a very active forum.

New Zealand Muzic Net

A very full artist directory the latest album and singles charts new release information gig guide discussion forum and free downloads from NZ bands.

New Zealand National Anthems

Learn about the history and protocol surrounding New Zealand's two national anthems. Access the lyrics for both and the score and sound files for 'God Defend New Zealand'.

NZ Music Education Events

This MENZA (Music Education New Zealand Aotearoa) page is a calendar of events for music education in New Zealand.

NZ Musician

Articles stories links news forums directories and general information about all genres of music in New Zealand.

Ofsted School Music Report: Wider and still wider

Ofsted's 2102 report 'Music in Schools: Wider still and wider' has been released and highlights that little improvement in music education has been seen since its previous report three years ago. The study was based on evidence from inspections of 90 primary and 90 secondary schools from 2008 – 2011 and calls for a critical improvement in music teaching and learning in schools in England.

Pacific Islands Music and Dance: A CyberGuide

This site was started as a project for the "Music of the Pacific Islands" course at the University of Michigan in Winter 2001.

Pasifika Education Plan 2013-2017

The Pasifika Education Plan 2013 – 2017 (PEP) is aimed at raising Pasifika learners’ participation, engagement and achievement from early learning through to tertiary education.The PEP’s vision is to see ‘Five out of five Pasifika learners participating, engaging and achieving in education, secure in their identities, languages and cultures and contributing fully to Aotearoa New Zealand’s social, cultural and economic wellbeing'.

The PEP Implementation Plan 2013-2017 is an overview of the Ministry of Education and Education Partner Agencies’ programmes to achieve the goals and targets of the PEP. It includes the lead agencies, key contacts and links to more information on each programme.

Performing Arts Facilities in Schools

This site offers advice and guidance for schools developing new or improved facilities for dance drama and music programmes based on The Arts in the New Zealand Curriculum.

Performing Arts Facilities in Schools: Year 1-8 Music Facilities

This section of the Performing Arts Facilities in Schools website discusses equipment and spaces needed for music teaching in years 1-8. Includes a look at performance spaces facilities that make teaching music easier for generalist teachers and specialist teaching spaces.

Performing Arts Facilities in Schools: Year 9-13 Music Facilities

This section of the Performing Arts Facilities in Schools raises some general issues related to facilities for teaching music in years 9-13. Includes lists of basic needs and advice based on the experiences of many schools particularly with regard to storage.

Performing Arts Facilities in Schools: Years 9-13 Drama Programme Needs

This section of the Performing Facilities in Schools website looks at the needs to consider when planning facilities for secondary school drama programmes. Includes basic requirements for drama teaching and information for schools developing comprehensive drama suites.

Perspectives on Singing

This is the latest freely available refereed e-journal in Multi-Disciplinary Research in the Arts from UNESCO Observatory Faculty of Architecture Building and Planning The University of Melbourne (ISSN 1835 - 2776). There are fourteen papers that consider the socialcultural pedagogical musical practices and health aspects of singing.

Promethean Editions

Visit this website to read up-to-date information on selected contemporary composers from New Zealand the United Kingdom and Australia. Read recent biographical notes and a current list of works and selected performance highlights.

Promoting Success for Māori Students: ERO 2010 Schools’ Progress Report

This 2010 report evaluates how schools have promoted success for Māori students since ERO’s previous national report in 2006. The success of Māori students at school is a matter of national interest and priority. This 2010 ERO evaluation indicates that not all educators have yet recognised their professional responsibility to provide a learning environment that promotes success for Māori students.

Questioning the Music Education Paradigm

Questioning the Music Education Paradigm is Volume 2 in the Biennial Series. An international cast of twenty three contributors turns a critical lens on the dominant music education paradigm to examine how we teach and what we teach. Edited by Lee Bartel ISBN: 0-920630-90-1

Quotations About Music

A site with inspirational quotes that advocate for the power of music.

Re-Investing in Arts Education: Winning America’s Future

This 2011 report sets out a series of strategies to achieve the over-arching conclusion from this 18-month study. To realise the potential of arts education the report argues for a seamless marriage of arts education strategies with overall educational goals. To accomplish this requires a dynamic collaboration between arts specialists classroom teachers and teaching artists to create creative environments that allow each child to reach his or her potential using all the tools available to reach and engage students in learning.

Research Studies in Music Education

A refereed journal fostering music education research internationally - published by the Callaway International Resource Centre for Music & Music Education Australia.

Revitalising Arts Education Through Community-Wide Coordination

In this Wallace-commissioned study RAND researchers describe initiatives in six American cities to reverse a long decline in arts education by coordinating the work of city agencies arts institutions schools and others. These “coordinated efforts” are fragile RAND concludes but show some promise in making more and better arts education available to more city children.

Robots with "Soul"

Can robots and humans interact the way that human beings interact with each other?

Secondary Education Portal

Information resources and guidance to support secondary teaching and learning.

Slow Pedagogy: A Dangerous but Powerful Idea - Counter Acceleration and Speed with Slowness and Wholeness (PDF 561KB)

This 2008 paper by Project Vision discusses a new vision for education in the 21st century. It considers current initiatives in India aimed at integrating new technologies changed classroom environments and a range of school structures to enable new practices to develop in an invisible and contextual manner so that they work slowly and with great finesse to create an unquiet and critical pedagogy - one where new media arts can sustain social change.

Songwriter 101

Songwriter101.com contains everything about the business side of the songwriter's profession - information education and the accumulated experience of music business professionals.

Songwriting Tips and Tools - The Muse's Muse

All you have ever wanted to know about songwriting in one place. The Muse's News is worth subscribing to as a free monthly newsletter for songwriters with exclusive articles copyright and publishing advice music website and book reviews contests and market information.

Sound of Music Returning to Schools in California (Word 26.5KB)

Music and art classes are returning to Californian schools. After the demise of the arts in American education a restoration is now in progress. The new state budget gives schools more than half a billion dollars this year toward restoring once-abundant courses in painting and ceramics chorus and band orchestra and drama -- and the experts needed to teach them. The article provides details of the community lobbying process against state-imposed cut-backs.

SOUNZ - The Centre for New Zealand Music

Created in New Zealand heard around the world. SOUNZ the Centre for New Zealand Music is a music information centre promoting the music of New Zealand. SOUNZ has the largest and most accessible collection of New Zealand music in the world which is now online. SOUNZ provides a range of services projects and activities including music teaching resources such as the SOUNZwrite guides for NCEA and Ears Wide Open for upper primary and junior secondary.

SOUNZ Community

For all those who make NZ music ‘happen’ there is a special area on this website which allows composers and contributors to share new works products and events. It also allows contributors to update their profiles and contact details online. To access this part of the site a user name and login are required.

SOUNZ Resources

SOUNZ offers secure e-commerce from this site allowing the purchase of musical scores recordings and publications that are available from the Centre. As well as selling many unpublished works by NZ composers through licence SOUNZ endeavours to stock all publications – cds scores music resources and books – that relate to their music.

Success for Boys

This New Zealand Ministry of Education website is intended to help teachers build on existing practice to create opportunities for all boys to succeed.


This site contains articles on Computer Music links to audio interfaces computer hardware MIDI controllers and MIDI interfaces samples loops software effects and audio processors software sequencers and software synthesizers and samplers. There is also information on electronic music and recording gear free music interviews iPods and portable media players music news and reviews.

Te Marautanga o Aotearoa

Te Marautanga o Aotearoa the new Māori curriculum document has been distributed to all Māori-medium schools. The document was launched on 26 September 2008. Explore the online community for Te Kaupapa Marautanga o Aotearoa.

The Art of the Matter: the development and extensions of ways of knowing in the Arts (PDF 70KB)

This downloadable paper (99 pages pdf) by researchers at the University of Waikato investigates how the development of ideas in the Arts can be promoted enhanced and refined in classrooms and in so doing build knowledge related to Arts educational pedagogy research and philosophy.

The Big Idea

This site carries information on the New Zealand creative sector jobs commissions auditions and professional development opportunities. Professional awards and competitions and intern-ship opportunities are listed. A weekly creative sector magazine is provided with local and international content. There is a place for forums a marketplace and on-line opinion polls. A feature aspect is the profiling of individuals and organisations and their work. The Big Idea is the connects the NZ creative sector with the world. Services are currently entirely free to subscribers.

The Case for Music in Schools

Music majors are the most likely group of college grads to be admitted to medical school. Physician and biologist Lewis Thomas studied the undergraduate majors of medical school applicants. He found that 66 percent of music majors who applied to med school were admitted the highest percentage of any group. Peter H. Wood ERIC Document No. ED327480 "The Case for Music in the Schools" Phi Delta Kappan February 1994

The Contributions of Learning in the Arts. Part 1: A Review of the Literature

This review of international and New Zealand literature explores the arguments made and evidence for the contribution of participation and/or formal learning in arts disciplines to educational social/cultural and economic outcomes with a key focus on school-aged learners.

The Contributions of Learning in the Arts. Part 2: A Synthesis

This was the second stage of a two-part project carried out for the Ministry for Culture and Heritage by the New Zealand Council for Educational Research. The first part comprised a review of New Zealand and international research on the impacts and outcomes of arts learning on a range of educational social economic and other outcomes with a focus on school-aged learners (Bolstad 2010). This synthesis draws and expands on Part 1.

The Impact of Effective Facilitation on Teaching and Learning in the Arts

This multi-method evaluation investigates the effectiveness of professional development facilitation processes and structures in the arts. The research was carried out during 2005. There is discussion about the impact of the professional development on teachers' knowledge and student achievement in Auckland and Northland regions.

The Impact of the NCEA on Student Motivation

This final report (June 2006) by Victoria University presents results of research carried out for the Ministry of Education. It presents key findings consistent with existing motivation theory and research but also reveals issues specific to NCEA of relevance to school efforts to maximise student motivation and achievement.

The Independence of Government Arts Funding: A Review

Written by Christopher Madden this 2009 report presents a global perspective on independence in government arts support exploring issues such as the ‘arm’s length principle’ and the ‘arts council versus ministry’ debate. It explores arts policy models and frameworks through a neutral lens surveying the incidence of different approaches around the world and summarising expert opinion on the strengths and weaknesses of the main approaches.

The Lament Project

The Centre for Integrated Media at the California Institute of the Arts announces the release of its new online sound/art collaboration called ‘The Lament Project' as part of the 2008 release of Viralnet.net the Centre's online journal and project space.

The Qualities of Quality: Understanding Excellence in Arts Education

Researchers at Harvard’s Project Zero explore the qualities of good K-12 arts programmes and conclude they go beyond “best practices” to include consideration of the goals of arts education such as aesthetic awareness and personal growth.

The Song Room

The Song Room is a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to providing music and arts programmes in Australian schools and communities. The Song Room provides a range of free programmes to schools and communities that otherwise would not have access to such opportunities.

The Tate Movie Project

The Tate Movie Project is an animated film made by and for children. The Tate Movie Project is a uniquely ambitious project using great artworks to inspire 5-13 year olds to contribute their ideas to an animated movie.

Theatrical Resources: Music Theatre International

This site provides resources to go with many of the most well-known shows like Fame Annie and Fiddler on the Roof. The study guides explore issues that are pertinent to the era and themes of the shows. A great resource for teachers who want to use the school show as an assessment tool.

Tino rangatiratanga - Senior Secondary Teaching and Learning Guides for the Arts

Examples of tino rangatiratanga in arts classrooms. Tino rangatiratanga is the principle of relative autonomy – the goal is to gain relative control over one's own life and cultural well-being.

Traditional Māori Music

A selection of images an essay and music clips that look at the integral role that music played in traditional Māori life. Topics include waiata haka and musical instruments. From the Discover Te Kohinga Taonga collection of the National Library of New Zealand.

Traditional Māori Music - Music Clips

A selection of music clips relating to traditional Maori music. Audios include haka a canoe chant a fishing chant waiata and samples of traditional musical instruments like the koauau. From the Discover Te Kohinga Taonga collection of the National Library of New Zealand.

Traditional Māori Music - Musical Instruments

An audio clip and a selection of images mostly from the 19th and early 20th centuries depicting a number of traditional Maori musical instruments. Images also include groups of women involved in stick games and poi dances. From the Discover Te Kohinga Taonga collection of the National Library of New Zealand.

Treaty of Waitangi

The Treaty of Waitangi website provides a great deal of information. There are all sorts of very good drama pre-texts here. ‘Quotes’ – what were people saying about the events surrounding the treaty? 128 biographies of key people in treaty history booklets case studies and a timeline.

Tātaiako: Cultural Competencies for Teachers of Māori Learners

Tātaiako: Cultural Competencies for Teachers of Māori Learners is a new resource explaining the progression of the competencies teachers need to develop so they can help Māori learners achieve educationally as Māori. Tātaiako has been developed to help all educators think about what it takes to successfully teach Māori learners. It provides a guide to the development of cultural competence for teachers themselves for their employers and for Initial Teacher Education providers and providers of on-going teacher professional development.

UNESCO Road Map for Arts Education

This document is designed to promote a common understanding among all stakeholders of the importance of Arts Education and its essential role in improving the quality of education. It endeavours to define concepts and identify good practices in the field of Arts Education. In terms of its practical aspects it is meant to serve as an evolving reference document which outlines concrete changes and steps required to introduce or promote Arts Education in educational settings (formal and non-formal) and to establish a solid framework for future decisions and actions in this field.


A selection of images from the 19th and early 20th centuries depicting the singing of waiata and performance of poi dances. It includes several photos of performers welcoming home the Māori Batallion after World War II. From the Discover Te Kohinga Taonga collection of the National Library of New Zealand.

Western Social Dance

This site is for teacher reference. It gives instructions and clips on a variety of historical western social dances from the late middle ages through to the beginning of the twentieth century. It includes dances such as the Galliard and the Pavane. It would be useful for dance teachers music teachers and for drama teachers who want to include dance in period productions.

Why is Teaching Composing so Challenging? (PDF 125KB) (124.24 kB)

A survey of classroom observation and teachers’ opinions by Rebecca Berkley. The article answers three questions related to composition learning in relation to GCSE - can all GCSE students compose; how do you teach composing at GCSE; and is the GCSE course a good test of composing ability?

Why Music is an Essential Liberal Art

Why should young people study music? This article considers the central place in the lives of young people. It discusses the central role of teaching to give them an opportunity to deepen their knowledge of the natural world - and of our connection to it - by becoming more aware of the mathematical order that underlies music.

Why Music? (PDF 185KB) (184.34 kB)

This research project was carried out in 2007 by Karen Carter MENZA liaison coordinator. The project provides a snapshot of student views about the place of music in their lives and makes this information available to music educators.

Yantra for Mahana (PDF 391KB) (390.22 kB)

Yantra for Mahana 2006 by Marte Szirmay is a massive iron sculpture erected at the entrance of the Woollaston Estates art landscape in Nelson late in 2006. This downloadable pdf includes an explanatory artist’s statement and a range of photos detailing the work’s erection and various views of the sculpture in situ (kindly provided by courtesy of the artist).

Your Brain and Musical Improvisation

In this TED Talks video musician and researcher Charles Limb considers how the brain works during musical improvisation so he put jazz musicians and rappers in an fMRI to find out. What he and his team found has deep implications for our understanding of creativity of all kinds.


Are you a Visual thinker?

Changing Assessment : How four simple words can solve education’s biggest problem

A TED talk by Mark Barnes discussing approaches to assessment and how to include the student voice in a ‘beautiful conversation’. 

Creative Confidence

David Kelly - building creative confidence universally beneficial and increases the appreciation for creative thinking (he did a TED talk about this too).

Do you have a wandering mind?

How Colour Blindness Might Affect an Art Student

How we teach the arts is as important as the fact we're doing it

Michael Rosen shares his checklist for how teachers can ensure that arts education is worthwhile for all students.

New Zealanders and the arts 2014 - Attitudes, attendance and participation in 2014

Creative New Zealand have recently published their findings after a three-year study looking at our attendance, attitudes and participation in the Arts. This three-yearly research began in 2005 and was repeated in 2008, 2011 and 2014. It delivers on-going information to the arts sector about New Zealanders’ level of involvement in, and attitudes towards, the arts.

Teacher Toolkit - 5 Minute Wellbeing Plan

Devised for 'guilty teachers' to manage work/life balance. 

Teacher Toolkit - 5 Miunute Workload Plan

The Qualities of Quality – Understanding Excellence in Arts Education

Written by Steve Seidel, Shari Tishman, Ellen Winner, Lois Hetland and Patricia Palmer, it is based on a study conducted in the US during 2006-2007 by Project Zero, commissioned by the Wallace Foundation and published at the Harvard Graduate School of Education – the home of Project Zero.

Visual Thinking Improves Writing

Encouraging writing through 'life journals' comic strips and drawing. 

Why do we keep creative people out of leadership roles?

Creatives as leaders - short article by David Burkus.

Why Med Schools are Requiring Art Classes

An article about the relationship between the arts, clinical observation and maintaining empathy in the medical profession. 

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