Just listen. Please?

Recently, over the course of a week or so, I’ve stumbled across three things that have lead me to posting this. The first was a tweet from the excellent La Cosa Preziosa from her Twitter stream here. She posted a link to a short Film Board of Canada film from/about R. Murray Schafer. It’s called Listen and it’s pretty fascinating.

http://twitter.com/#!/lacosapreziosa/status/107839524637376512

A few days later John Rushton of wearealtered and make recordings posted a great link to some work that Sound and Music are doing in schools in the UK. The idea is to get children to listen to 60 seconds worth of audio a day and then get them to talk about it – their thoughts, experiences, ideas and so on.

Then, this weekend just gone, my eldest daughter’s homework was to listen to the sounds around her from a specific point for five minutes at three different times across the weekend. She sat on our front doorstep and noted down the things she heard.

20110914-132729.jpg

20110914-132741.jpg

This is something we don’t do enough of, particularly musicians and all those people that tell me ‘they love music’ – when was the last time you dedicated specific time to listen to something – be it music or the sounds around you? I’m betting it was a long time ago. We tend to do a lot of hearing but very little listening. The Sound and Music article contains the following words.

Listening, and the way we experience sound, has a huge impact on our lives. Yet in a predominantly visual culture time is rarely dedicated – particularly in schools – to exploring our aural experiences and developing our ability to listen in a concentrated or imaginative way. Minute of Listening aims to highlight the importance of listening and create a structured, daily activity that allows teachers the time and the means for their class to explore the joys of listening.

I think it’s a really good idea that could benefit all of us. Try it.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s