The role of Secondary School Extracurricular music activities as a learning context
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Music education in secondary schools often incorporates an extracurricular dimension with choirs, instrumental ensembles, and school productions given a considerable commitment of time and resources outside of formal school hours. In general, participation in school extracurricular activities has been linked to improved academic performance, greater connectedness with school and the development of certain personal and interpersonal skills. The meanings participants make of their learning in the extracurricular context, however, is not yet fully understood. As participants will act towards their extracurricular learning on the basis of the meaning that the learning holds for them, understanding these meanings is important in itself. Given the difficulty in attributing particular learning to participants' involvement in school extracurricular music activities, their meanings also offer a useful lens through which to view the nature of this learning. This paper will outline current research into participants' meanings of learning in the secondary school extracurriculum including initial data from a Music Head of Department involved in the direction and coordination of extracurricular music activities.
Australian Association for Research in Music Education: Proceedings of the XXVIth Annual Conference
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