In last week’s blog, I shared 5 ways we can incorporate music into our classrooms. Most of us see the value of having music playing while in the classroom or student salon but we might stop when it comes to students wanting to listen to their own music on their phones. It’s not something that we have allowed in the past and we certainly don’t want them using headphones during a lecture or while they are with a client. However, aside from that, is there a time that would be beneficial to allow students to listen to their own music?
I think there is.
When students are working on their own outside of the classroom, consider allowing them to use their own personal phones to listen to music while they work on their manikin head or assignments. Music can be a tool for some students to help them concentration and focus.
I was recently at a student hair competition and while students were working on their manikin heads we played fun, upbeat music. The majority of the students came by and thanked me for playing music while they worked because it relaxed them and helped them focus on their task. It will do the same for your students during independent study.
If you choose to allow this, you must give students guidelines on proper use, so set the ground rules first.
Here are a few things you may want to consider:
Listen to personal music while working on independent studies only.
Students must be able to hear the intercom if called for an appointment.
Listen to music that you love. New and unfamiliar music is distracting and defeats the purpose.
Listen on your own player (phone, iPod, Mp3, etc.). Sharing wastes time and causes commotion that can be distracting.
Let’s be very clear. I am not recommending that students listen to music during lecture time or while serving a client. To do so at that time would be a complete distraction and prevent the student from being with the client or educator. Treat this concept like I have encouraged you to treat the phone. Create guidelines and expectations. If they are using it inappropriately, it is a behavioral problem and not a reason to ban the use of the technology.
Some of you may love this idea. Some may not like it so much. Whatever you choose to do at your school, you must be a united front. If one is doing it, every instructor in the school must do it and support it. You can’t let one group of students do it and not others. Above all, if your school owner doesn’t approve of it, don’t do it. They have the final say!
Lisha Barnes is a Cosmetology/Barber Instructor with over 25 years of experience. She started out in a small private school working in Admissions, Financial Aid, Education, and School Director. She was a Director of Education for a chain of Private Cosmetology schools. Currently she serves as the Academic Development Manager for Milady where she supports schools and educators around the nation with continuing education, curriculum development and product knowledge. Lisha has served as an Educator for Milady’s Career Institute; NACCAS Commission; Career Educators of America Committee Member; and has authored numerous writing projects for Milady. This industry experience allows her to see the industry from a variety of viewpoints, which helps in sharing information and ideas with educators all around the world.