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Manhattanville Music Curriculum Project (MMCP)

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Charles Groth

on 25 June 2013

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Transcript of Manhattanville Music Curriculum Project (MMCP)

The Manhattanville Music Curriculum Project
The Beginning: The Objectives
This was a direct response to the decline of interest of students in school music when they got older.

Students showed a trend of rejecting "school music", in favor of music outside of school.

Why Support?
Focus on arts was at a high point due to President Kennedy, as well as the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (1965)
The project was lead by Ronald Thomas, a faculty member of Manhattanville College of the Sacred Heart in Purchase, New York.

The project included musicians, educators, and institutions.

The 22 consultants included musicians from cutting edge fields, such as jazz and electronic music, as well as composers.
What specifically did they want to accomplish?
(1) "to prepare a curriculum guide and related materials designed for the primary through the high school years, all using discovery approaches;" (2) "to develop a meaningful sequence of basic musical concepts in terms of the children's understanding;" and (3) "to more closely unify philosophies and directions of all areas and levels of music learning through the development of a spiral-type curriculum."
http://www.eric.ed.gov/PDFS/ED045865.pdf - Detailed report by founder and director Ronald Thomas published in 1970

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MMCP_–_Manhattanville_Music_Curriculum_Project - Wikipedia Entry (summary information)

In 1965, the project was begun with the objective of developing a music curriculum for sequential learning for primary grades through high school.

This also included developing a way to effectively prepare teachers to use the new curriculum
http://www.questia.com/library/1G1-247740071/the-manhattanville-music-curriculum-program-1966-1970 - Additional Information
Educational reform also spurred on by Cold War reaction to the launch of Sputnik I, actively researching and experimenting with alternative educational techniques throughout all of education
The Phases - Phase 1
The first phase began in the summer of 1966

Focus on exploration
"What would happen if..."
Everything was questioned, nothing was sacred
Factors explored were intrinsic vs extrinsic motivation, learning styles, formation of concepts, etc

Assessment in early stage was difficult, so attitude of student toward's his success was used as the gauge of effects of instructional practices
Phase 2
Synthesis and refinement of data from Phase 1

They realized that the students were often not hearing what the teacher was hearing. Instead, they focused on other features, such as timbre, and were making appropriate choices based on what they actually heard, as opposed to what the teacher was wanting them to hear.

Activities increased and more schools joined the testing.
Phase 3
Building on the previous phases, the focus shifted to 4 objectives:

1)Refinement and field testing of curricular items
2) Investigation of separate curriculum for early childhood
3) Plans for reeducation of teachers for new curriculum
4) Development of an assessment tool for the new curriculum
What was the result...?
The results of the MMCP was development of student based learning.

Students learned through problem solving by discovering the elements during assigned tasks.

The teacher took on a supportive role, as opposed to an evaluating role.

The Sequence
Through spiraled curriculum...

The teacher presents a musical task or problem
The students create and compose in a group, experimenting and sharing ideas
The groups perform their compositions
Students discuss and reflect on the performance
Students listen to music for pleasure and discover new ideas
The Impact
As a result of this project (in addition to other musical studies, such as Tanglewood and Yale), music education repertoire for listening and performing expanded, emphasis on composition and expression increased, and technology became more involved.
Music in Childhood: Multimedia Update: From Preschool Through the Elementary ...
By Patricia Shehan Campbell, Carol Scott-Kassner
Full transcript