Tuesday, June 14, 2011

POS: Classwork for 6-14-11

1. While YouTube is available, I'd like you to view Ken Robinson's lecture. It has little to do with music, but it has everything to do with education. He makes some intruiguing points, but please understand that his opinions are his own- I am not endorsing his claims, just acknowledging them. Click here. Robinson claims that our educational system is structured upon an antiquated approach. Describe this approach and propose some realistic changes to NHS that would accommodate his thinking.

2. Backmasking and Reverse Speech in Music: Backward messaging in music (commonly known as backmasking) has been a controversy ever since the late 1960s, when messages were found backwards on some Beatles' albums, hinting that Paul McCartney had died. Some of these subliminal messages have been identified as purposeful while some are apparently inadvertent. Some believe that many of these backward messages were in fact examples of "Reverse Speech" in music. Speech reversals occur naturally in all forms of speech, sung or spoken. Explore some of the links and sites regarding this subject and offer your opinion on at least 10 specific examples. Do you buy into the theory of Reverse Speech or is it all a bunch of hogwash?


(1) Human speech has two distinctive yet complementary functions and modes. The Overt mode is spoken forwards and is primarily under conscious control. The Covert mode is spoken backward and is not under conscious control. The backward mode of speech occurs simultaneously with the forward mode and is a reversal of the forward speech sounds.

(2) These two modes of speech, forward and backward, are dependent upon each other and form an integral part of human communication. One mode cannot be fully understood without the other mode. In the dynamics of interpersonal communication, both modes of speech combined communicate the total psyche of the person, conscious as well as unconscious.

(3) Covert speech develops before overt speech. Children speak backwards before they do forwards. Then, as forward speech commences, the two modes of speech gradually combine into one, forming an overall bi-level communication process.

List of Backmasked/Reverse Speech Songs

Jeff Milner's Site

Reverse Speech Site

Homemade YouTube Segments

Click here to here a well known sample of backmasking from Led Zeppelin's "Stairway to Heaven". This audio file will play both forward (original context) and backward (backmasking revealed).


Jared F. said...

According to Robinson, our modern educational system is based upon one that originated during the period of Enlightenment, its purpose being to help students gain economic prowess. Clearly a person’s education holds no real importance in the economic world (though a diploma/GED is recommended), so this ancient way of thinking is unacceptable. Norton High School is not a major offender, however; to be completely honest, I’m happy with the education I’ve received here. The classes are not segregated entirely by age or class, since many electives and academic courses contain students in different graduating classes. I think the only reasonable change would be to abolish superfluous standardized tests like MCAS while keeping helpful and mandatory ones, such as the various AP tests kids take in order to receive college credit. Those are actually helpful!

Panos N said...

1) Ken Robinson’s lecture was very interesting. The educational system today is based on standardized testing and long lectures. Robinson’s explanation on divergent thinking proves that creativity must be taken into account in the school system. Depending on the job, one may or may not apply what they had learned in school to their job. Hypothetically, if one majored in architecture and lost all of his creativity during his school career, his job would become much more difficult. Creativity is what gives everything its own unique characteristics and what keeps the world keep going. If the human race was to lose its creativity, we would fade away into oblivion. Creativity helps us survive and gives us the power to improve.

Robinson’s proposal of integrating grades was very intriguing as well, to a certain extent. Obviously, schools cannot integrate math classes and English classes or an classes that base their classes off of past math classes. However, integration of history, science, and other classes would be certainly interesting and would make for a much better learning experience. In my opinion, NHS should slowly move towards divergent thinking. The current academic system will undoubtedly be changed in the future. Although lectures and standardized testing are important, creativity is what propels the life around us.

Jared F. said...

I think the existence of Reverse Speech is totally plausible, but I don’t the whole scientific theories surrounding it. I think it is simply the idea that by saying one thing, we also say something else, backwards. Huge explanations aren’t needed. Also, I think if you exploit this and use it in a creative way, then more power to you. I think it’s really cool to hear things backwards as if they were intended to be used that way (especially the ones that are crystal clear.

Panos N said...

I personally believe that subliminal messages are, for the most part, real. However, there are always going to be instances where it could just be a mere coincidence.

1) Eminem - My Name Is
I thought this subliminal message was very interesting, although I do not understand the point of implementing a subliminal message that repeats your name.

2)B-52 - Detour Through Your Mind
The subliminal message in this song was obviously intentional, as the lead singer told the person playing the song backwards to be careful and not to break the needle.

3)Brittany Spears - Hit Me Baby One More Time
The subliminal message in this song was quite odd. However, with Brittany Spears being the way she is, the message was most likely intentional.

4) Pokemon - Pokemon Rap
This song was not a very good example of subliminal messages as the lyrics were hard to hear and I could not make out the “I Love Satan”.

5)The Eagles - Hotel California
I believe that this was also a very poor example of subliminal messages as the lyrics were once again hard understand.

6)Led Zepplin - Stairway to Heaven
This was a pretty intriguing example of subliminal messages as the example was long and clear.

Anonymous said...

1.) Robinson claims that our educational system is structured in a way that is very unfavorable to children. He claims that our systems are structured around the idea that children must get an education to be anything when they grow up, to get any job, even though that is simply not the case anymore. It helps to have an education but it does not guarantee anything for them. Also, our systems are structured around this idea that is so concrete, something that pushed students to be very one-minded. It doesn’t allow room for any answers other than the one that is in the back of book, which they discourage anyone to look at. It doesn’t allow for creativity or collaboration, which is the best environment for anyone to learn and grow in. It is based upon the individual mind understanding the one answer they want us to learn, even if you come up with alternate answers. Also, it is now, a myth mind you, that education has grown into this ADHD epidemic, where students who are so distracted and do not follow what the teacher says has an issue with their brain. But, it is really an issue with the material, the way its taught, lack of creativity (divergent thinking), and the distractions. We feed our kids pills so they can learn but it puts them to sleep, when we should be waking them up and opening up more doors to encourage thinking outside the box. The structure is like an assembly line, based on age, not what each student can bring to the table; it is all standardization and there is more than that simplicity.
There are some ideas that could be brought to NHS to accommodate his thinking. One is to create more classes based on the material in the class and that do not split into separate divisions based upon age/grade. They should be more subjective, like some of our electives. Classes should become less structured around standards set by the government and testing and become more structured on the material value of the class.

1.) “My Name Is” (Eminem): So, a first, I could not hear it at all. But, when I did hear it, it was very questionable as to what he was saying (you had to listen very carefully). His name is sort of easy to make out of many words, so I do not think it was done on purpose. But, then again, it is Eminem and he would be capable of creating something like that.
2.) “Empty Spaces” (Pink Floyd): This one is very interesting because you can hear it so clearly and it a very evident message. Because this is so clear, I do think this was done on purpose.
3.) “Nature Trail To Hell” (Weird Al): This message is so ridiculous and honestly I find it stupid that I do not think it was done on purpose.
4.) “Fire on High” (ELO): This one you cannot even understand what he is saying forward but it is so clear backwards. I t made me wonder if they were actually reversed and I was listening to them in the wrong order. I think this is done on purpose.
5.) “Another One Bites the Dust” (Queen): On this one I can’t really hear what the message is and it makes me think people are just hearing things or making it like it is there when it’s not.
Some of these are very clear there is an alternate message. You can hear it very well and it is not vague as to what they are saying. In others it just sounds like gibberish and I just don’t know how people hear anything. This is something I would like to believe in but it’s hard because this would be something so hard and almost impossible to do it seems. This would take so much time and effort to actually make it work; I do not see how any of them could be intentional.

Meagan Elliott

Mike W. said...

1.) The antiquated approach that Robinson speaks of in his lecture is based on many factors that he claims should be reformed. For example, he explains how schools group kids based on age, not the intellectual abilities of the individuals. I think that grouping at all, based on personal experience, is an extremely ineffective approach to education. He did mention that great achievements happen in groups, but if we all learn the same variety of information, then the successful group work could still be achieved. He also mentioned how our educational system is based on the fact that everything in the world has one answer. Despite agreeing with Robinson, I do acknowledge that there are aspects of the world that do have only one answer. For example, there is only one right answer to a specific math equation, but the answer is not the only part of an equation that you can find; there are many things that you can do to that one equation that would also be correct. One way to fix this “antiquated approach” would be to increase the individualized aspect of learning, which would take away the whole school approach. Another solution to this problem would be to decrease standardized testing and the whole “one answer” approach to learning.

2.) The songs that I found questionable in their reversed meaning were “Stairway to Heaven”, “Imagine”, “Hotel California”, and “Beat It.” The songs that I thought had intentionally reversed meaning were “Another One Bites the Dust”, “Nature Trail to Hell”, and “My Name is..”
I do not believe in every part of the Theory of Reverse Speech, but after listening to several things, not just songs, backwards, it would seem that many words appear as other words backwards and people could try to express another completely different message through the right placement of words. The part that said that “children speak backwards before they do forwards” does not really make much sense. Anyone can speak, but this theory is suggesting that children learn how to express what they want to express through backwards speech before they learn forwards speech (or maybe I‘m just over-analyzing this theory).

Allie Capprini said...

1. Robinson has the idea that just because you are older does not necessarily mean that you are smarter than those that are younger than yourself. Also, that our school systems now give so much tedious work to students that may be unnecessary, and it has caused children to turn away from learning. He also says that the way the education system works favors some people rather than others, and that a good education does help but it doesn’t ensure a good job for you in the future. To accommodate his thinking at NHS we could have more classes that are open to any grade level. Also we could try to add more interesting topics to the classes that we do offer, and in doing so add more information and lessons in those classes that will help the students out in the real world.


a.On Purpose:
i.“Empty Spaces” by Pink Floyd
ii.“Detour Through Your Mind” by B-52
iii.“Stairway to Heaven” by Led Zepplin
i.“My Name Is…” by Eminem
ii.“Pokerap” by Pokemon
iii.“Another One Bites the Dust” by Queen
c.Probably by accident:
i.“Break On Through” by The Doors
ii.“Baby One More Time” by Britney Spears
iii.“Hotel California” by The Eagles
iv.“Imagine” by John Lennon