Music and Suggestion

‘Music is a higher revelation than all wisdom and philosophy’

Ludwig van Beethovensmile

The Suggestopedia is an education method developed by Georgi Lozanov, which has among its principles, the use of positive suggestions. According to the author, Suggestion is: …’a constant communicational factor, which can create conditions to activate the capacities of personality’s functional reserves mainly through the para-conscious mind activity’

According to Lozanov, the right use of positive suggestions can activate the mind, improving memory and learning.

Through suggestions, an expectation environment is created to lead the Learning Partners to have not only an easier learning but more efficient and accelerated.

Suggestions can be vocals and non-vocals depending on the use of the voice. They can also be verbal and non-verbal, it means, transmitted by words or perceived by the environment (gestures, music, physical spaces, etc). The verbal sugestions can even be direct or indirect, depending on the way they are presented.

Music as a suggestion element: Music is energy. Listening to it makes us move, gives us energy and affects our emotions. It can even produce an integral and concrete action on which the person, who is involved in the musical experience, can or cannot be conscious.

Music has the power to make us imagine, allowing us having many sensations, taking us to different and unimaginable worlds. Through it, we can travel in time, go through the seas, climb mountains, float in space, suffer, laugh, love and cry.

Physical vibrations, organized structures and rhythms of determined kind of music interact with our mind and body in different ways, altering our brain in a natural way. Structure and design of sounds, affect the body and determine our movements while its harmony and changing chords can make fluctuate our emotions.

Musical compositions in lower tones can make us to feel sad. However, if they are composed in higher tones and rapid rhythms, can make us feel joy, euphoria and happiness. Air instruments as well as the wooden ones and the violins can produce a more relaxed sensation rather than the trumpets and drums.

The interaction of all the elements of a musical composition (chords, rhythms, harmony, tones, instruments, etc) is done to produce physical and psychological effects in people.

Once we know the properties of every kind of music, we can make the learners be ready -physical and emotionally- for the different activities designed for our learning experiences.

There is a musical style, a genre and a determined musical piece for every situation, emotion and suggestion.

If, at the beginning of our learning experience, we wish to create a very good environment, being welcoming with the participants as well as making them enthusiast and happy, we can use salsa, rumba, merengue and any other Latin music that, with their happy and alive rhythm, can accelerate the heart beat and invite us to move our body.

If the purpose is to create sensation of stability, predictability and security, like in a mentally stimulant environment for learning, musical compositions of the Baroque period as for example: Haendel, Vivaldi, Schütz, Bach, will be helpful.

Pieces of Classic period (Mozart, Beethoven, Wagner) are clear, elegant and transparent. These elements help with concentration, memory and space perception.

New Age music generates, in some people, sensation of space and time as well as an alert relaxed state.

Each piece of music used during our learning experiences must be included in the instructional design with the objective and length already set.

What positive suggestion do I want to create? What emotional state is the one for every activity and what kind of music helps to get it? By answering these questions we can select the appropriate musical compositions that will support positive suggestions in or Learning Partners.

Let the music play!

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