As a member in the Editorial group we have the responsibility to write and collect articles for our school magazine that will be distributed in May. Read and tell me what you think of this one:
Albert Einstein, known as one of the smartest persons who have ever lived, had a teacher who told his parents that the best thing to do would be to take their son out of school, saying that he was “to stupid to learn”. Einstein’s mother thought otherwise, and bought her son a violin. Einstein turned out to be very good on the violin and he loved to play sonates by Mozart and Bach. This violin became the key to his success. And every time he got stuck with a problem on his mind, he took some time to think while playing the violin.
I’ve heard about it before, that listening to classical music while reading those heavy books with no ending will help you to keep the focus during your studies. And I can tell by own experience that it’s true. But how does it actually work?
Of course, most of the students want to develop and perform better during their studies, and many experiments have been done to find the ultimate study technique.
Laurence O’Donnell tells us in his paper, Music and the Brain (1999), about a university of North Texas, USA, who let a group of college students do an IQ test. Before the test group 1 had to listen to Mozart’s Sonate for two pianos in D major; group 2 had to listen to relaxation music and group 3 did not listen to any music at all. Highest score was made by group 1 with an average of 119, group 2 had an average of 111, and group 3 had an average of 110 - a simple experiment telling us how easily we are able to increase the capacity of our brain.
So, what actually happens in your body while listening to Mozart? Major physically changes that take place in our body may be seen as decreased blood pressure, diminished respiration rate and muscle relaxation: changes that will enhance a persons ability to keep better focus.
Still, music could also give the opposite effect, in other words, make our muscles tense and increase our blood pressure. The trick is to find the right music, and the ”secret” is found in the beat within the music, which has been fond as a common factor among the music that has been proved as good music to study to. 60 beats/ min is the recommended one, a beat that might not be found in the dancehall music.
Further on O’Donnell talks about the experience of reacting to rhythm. There are two responses we people make to rhythm; 1) the auditory response, and 2) the physical response. And the first one does not work without the other. The reaction may also be different from person to person. Every person has a certain rhythm in their body: our heart beat, while breathing, walking or if we go for a run. And so it tells us that my body rhythm is not the same as yours. And just as the music, my physical respond to certain music does not have to be the same as yours.
Lets take a look at a regular student, and see what types of nursing diagnoses that might be determined: “stress overload related to school work as evidenced by dark circles under the eyes”, or maybe “risk for compromised resilience related to diminished sleeping hours.” I believe more diagnoses could be found. So what type of nursing interventions could be done? The interventions are many; eat healthy food, get good sleep, practise yoga, engage in an stimulating hobby etc. But the intervention could also be as easy as “Mozart”. And after a week with a 60 beats/min-music in that student’s ear we might write down diagnoses as “Readiness for enhanced knowledge” and “Readiness for enhanced coping”. Diagnosis I wished would be more common that “Acute Pain” and “Impaired comfort”.
So, finally I suggest everyone to load your Mp3, Cd-player, mobile or Ipod, open that Potter&Perry-book of yours and let Mozart do the work!