UNESCO-NIE Centre for Arts Research in Education (CARE)

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Name of Author: 
Lum, Chee Hoo
Thesis (M.A.) National Institute of Education, Nanyang Technological University
Chong, Sylvia
Year of completion: 
Country of Research Data: 

Thinking schools focuses on students being encouraged to developed skills that are associated with learning, communicating and creative thinking. The development of critical and creative thinking in teachers and students is established through the school curriculum and activities. In line with the educational goals of Singapore, with the emphasis on "Thinking Schools, Learning Nation", study serves to examine the effects of introducing group music composition activities as a creative and critical thinking tool in the primary music curriculum of Singapore. The composition project provided an avenue to reaffirm musical knowledge and skills pupils have been learning and helped pupils in activity using these ideas in the music making process, also giving them a sense of ownership. Three outstanding observations that were prevalent in most groups that participated in the composition project include, 1) pupils' use of initiation as the main focus in composing, 2) the structuring of pupils' compositions were based on the initial exploration of sound and 3) pupils' group decision making process were based primarily on a leading member's decision in the group. The scores for pupils' revised performances showed improvements as compared to their initial performances. Pupils' two main considerations during revision include, 1) the appropriateness of their sounds with regards to theme and 2) their co-ordination during the performance. Most groups had a more unified revised performance compared to their initial try. Evaluation is a process that is often left out in the current music curriculum which can prove to be an important tool in primary music education here in Singapore.

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