Low-stakes written assignment that functions as an “in-class” activity for asynchronous course. Comes in 3rd week of class, after reading about music’s significance/meanings (as a concept) from textbook “Soundscapes: Exploring Music in a Changing World” (Shelemay 2015). Helps students engage with the concept by grounding it in their everyday musical experiences, individually and in relationship with one another. Students cite this activity as one of their favorites because it gives them the chance to share musical examples that are important for them in some way with their classmates, and to gain exposure to diverse musics shared by their classmates. I like this simple activity because it helps students grasp how specific musical meaning is, dependent upon many social factors (social context, identity/ies, physical setting, geographic orientation, etc); in other words, it helps counter the myth of music as universal language, in a way that builds from students’ own experiences and thus is more memorable and meaningful for them.
Instructor: Miranda Fedock
Course: Introduction to World Music (MUS 102)