Students Listen to Music During School


Many students listen to their iPods during lunch to simply relieve the stress of the school day. — Melissa Holler

Almost all students around the school have an iPod, cell phone or some type of technological device for their listening pleasures; yet what is the school policy regarding this?

“Students are allowed to listen to music before school, during lunch and after school,” said assistant principal Dyan Gomez. Some teachers at RHS believe that music helps students progress. Three years ago, ceramics teacher Ron Loyd approached Principal Dr. Debra Munk about the creative environment an art class has, and convinced her to let him allow his students to listen to music in class. They spoke about the academic component of an art class, and the majority of it, which is studio time.

According to, a Canadian research group from McMaster University compared two groups of six children between ages four and six; one group took Suzuki music lessons and the other had no musical instruction. The results, which were published in the online journal Brain on Sept. 20, 2006, showed that the children who received musical instruction excelled above their peers in memory skills and ‘non-musical’ abilities such as literacy, mathematics and even IQ.

“I let students listen to music while they work. [When] I am giving a lecture, I do not allow students to have their headphones in,” said Loyd. “I have expanded to having myself play music through the speakers on my computer.” Loyd continues to play music in his class almost every day of the week.

During the week, Loyd plays music corresponding to the day. Mondays are dedicated to listening to Michael Jackson, Tuesdays Tupac, Wednesdays Beatles, Thursdays are “negotiable” and Fridays are salsa.

Many students listen to their iPods during lunch to simply relieve the stress of the school day. -- Melissa Holler

There are limitations to when and how a student may listen to music on school grounds. “I do not encourage students to listen to music while talking to me, [or any other administrator]. I would like to know that the student is listening,” said Gomez.

According to, music is a natural thing. It is part of our biological heritage and is hard-wired into our genes as a survival strategy. Music may be used to increase harmony and social bonding among those playing it or listening to it. It may have also contributed to changes in the brain (i.e. verbal memory, counting and self-discipline), which may have enhanced survival.

In an article by Laura Woodall and Brenda Ziembroski, they go into depth about music and how it promotes literacy. The successful acquisition of reading and writing in early childhood depends on a solid background in oral language skills.

Young children seem to be naturally “wired” for sound and rhythm. Besides providing enjoyment, music can play an important role in language and literacy development. Strong social bonds are encouraged through music and songs beginning in preschool. Toddlers can begin to experiment with grammatical rules and various rhyming patterns in songs and other written text.

Different schools are allowed to listen to music at certain times, or during class transitions. “We are a smaller school, so it is easier to monitor students,” said Gomez.

Can music benefit workers as well? Many studies have been conducted, and it is evident that music has had positive effects on workers. According to some recent studies, it was found that those listening to music while working showed a six to ten percent increase in productivity.

Still think that this whole music thing sounds crazy? Well, listen to this. According to, cows will produce more milk if Mozart is played! Now, that is music helping the workplace!