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Different sounds, different musics, different teaching : an Australian case study in multicultural teaching and learning
conference contributionposted on 2010-01-01, 00:00 authored by Dawn JosephDawn Joseph, J Southcott
This single case study is part of a wider ongoing research project, begun in 2005, entitled Intercultural attitudes of pre-service music education students from Deakin University and Monash University, Melbourne, Australia. One participant selected from the entire cohort and reinterviewed in 2009 as it was apparent that his experience and expertise outstripped all the others. This paper explores the tensions between authentic pedagogical practice, as understood by the interviewee, in community teaching and in a school. The data generated were analysed using interpretative phenomenological analysis. Three major themes were identified: benefits of community music making, authentic learning, and reality of class music practice. The data demonstrate that authentic socio-cultural understanding is achievable in community music teaching, particularly in the honoring of what individuals bring the sharing of expertise between ensemble players and valuing community arts practice. However, as this is a case study demonstrates, at least in some schools, there is a lack of understanding of how multicultural music could and should be taught. Australian schools should encourage teachers who bring different sounds, different musics and different teaching into the classroom thus resolving to some degree, the potential mismatches between culturally developed learning styles and music teaching methods.