Problems of development of associative musical memory in the process of teaching music


The article discusses the issue of memory development in the process of teaching music both in the system of Irigher and in the system of additional musical education, in particular, some methods of memory development are examined, such as: associative method, «emotional kaleidoscope», «photography» method creative method «marathon». A musician educator, if he aims to go beyond the «artisanal» way of teaching, if he sees his task as to deepen, intensify the process of musical perception of a student, should logically useassociations, working on this or that musical material, use them to the best of their abilities and needs, in accordance with the individuality of the student, and with the specific situation that develops in the lesson. Each methodology has its own methodological device aimed at the development of associative thinking. The Association, being a unifying link in the psychology' of mental cognitive processes, served as the basis for a number of methods.


Memory is a storehouse of life experience and professional skills, so even the ancient Greek poet Aeschylus in his famous poem «Prometheus chained» called memory-\he mother of all muses and the cause of all things. The name of the ancient Greek goddess of memory - Mnemosyne is still preserved in scientific usage in terms of «mnemic activity» or «mnemic actions». To paraphrase the words of Socrates, spoken by him about his friend, we can say: «Tell me what you remember and I'll tell you who you are».

Phenomenal memory is almost always a sign of outstanding abilities. Such memory among musicians was possessed by W.A. Mozart, S. W. Rachmaninov, F. Liszt, which, having listened to the most complex musical composition once, could play it by heart. The great creators who have made a large contribution to the development of mankind, who have left their mark in history, often had a memory given to them from birth, but more often- developed in the process of constant exercises. However, what big musicians achieved without apparent labor, ordinary musicians even with abilities have to win with great effort.

Without a doubt, among modern musicians, the famous Russian pianist, winner of the international Tchaikovsky competition - Denis Matsuev, has an outstanding memory, who, while on tour in Paris, was preparing to play one concert by W.A. Mozart (instead of a sick pianist), and because of a mistake by the conductor, who mixed up the number of the concert, he had to remember the text of another concert on the stage without preliminary rehearsal. This example is certainly a sample of excellent musical memory, which is characterized by rapid memorization of a musical composition, its durable preservation and the most accurate reproduction, even after a long time after learning. Here, by the way, the golden rule of didactics comes to mind: «only what is well understood is well remembered», which is equally true for both the student and the musician who learns a musical composition by heart. For many professional musicians and music lovers who have developed artistic and imaginative thinking, different types of art interact, interpenetrate each other. There is a «diffusion» of literature, painting, theater into music and vice versa. It is obvious that the necessary prerequisite and condition of processes of this type - the developed associative thinking of the student, and what should be remembered by the music teacher, at whatever level he or she worked (school, college, university), with whatever category of students would not have to deal.

In science, as in art, there is an opinion that talent is a highly developed ability to establish internal connections and relations between diverse and seemingly far-apart phenomena, images, ideas, and for a gifted person any thought, any idea, any subject cause an inexhaustible stream of associations. Association (lat. Associatio - connection), in psychology - the logical relationship between individual events, facts, objects or phenomena, reflected in consciousness and fixed in memory. In the presence of an associative connection between the two psychic phenomena A and B, the appearance in the human mind of the phenomenon naturally leads to the appearance of the phenomenon B in mind. Associations are certain reactions of the body to an external or internal stimulus. The sensory organs act as external stimuli: our eyes, ears, and also the nerve endings of our limbs. Internal irritants are thoughts and ideas of a person, as well as signals from the nerve endings of internal organs [1].

Associations appear in a change in the way person thinks. Another simple definition of association is when something makes a person think about something else. What are associations? They are our thoughts, our ideas about good and bad, about light and darkness. They allow us to understand ourselves and our role in this world. Verbal associations are born from children's fairy tales, narratives, short stories and fables. They accompany us in our dreams. Associations are absorbed by man along with mother's milk, with a lullaby. They, like tiny grains, are selected, deposited and strengthened in our consciousness. The process of forming associations is continuous. The most active verbal associations we get in the childhood, school and student years. Read books, verbal communication and narration heard give us these magical results. Our treasury continues to be replenished relentlessly in adulthood. Day by day, we learn something new: nature, people, secrets of the world. Communication with interesting people and reading entertaining literature contribute to grinding, scraping and the accumulation of associations. And if you are a generous person, then by all means share the accumulated wealth. In contrast to the experience that a person acquires in the process of cognizing the world, as a result of his own observations of nature, people and himself, verbal associations are of a different nature. Thanks to the language, knowledge is transmitted from person to person without a direct appeal to the object of observation - bypassing life experience. Our consciousness and our associations are inseparable.

The phenomenon of association was described by Plato and Aristotle, however, the term «association» was proposed by J.Locke in the XVII century. In associative psychology, the types of associations were distinguished by the ways of their formation', some authors (D.Hume, J.St.Mill) identified associations by similarity, light blue-blue, by contrast blackwhite, by adjacency in space and time, random the fight a child in a dark room then cause the scare of darkness, cause and effect (Hume). Researchers D.Gartley, J.Mill reduced all associations in space and time, since they denied the subjects activity in the processes of formation of associations. Subsequently, A.Ben defined the so-called creative associations, the formation of which is explained by “spontaneous activity of the mind, and nit by a combination of ideas gained in experience. Two opposing points of view on the: mechanism: of associations can also be distinguished. Some authors considered the associations, only a «shadow» of brain processes combined according to certain physiological laws (A. Ben, D. Gartley, T. Hibbes, J. Mill), others attributed the emergence of Associations exclusively to the laws of consciousness in itself (J. Mill) [2]. Subsequently, the physiological mechanisms of associations were studied in the school of I.P. Pavlov, who explained the association of contiguity in time and space by the formation of conditioned reflexes. The association as a process of active imagination was considered in its writings by the French psychologist Theodule Ribot. The famous Soviet Union psychologist R.S.Nemov describes association as the basis of memory and considers memorization techniques that are based on associations.

D.K. Kirnarskaya, V.N. Petrushin, V.D. Ostromensky, V.V. Medushevsky gave the rationale of associativity of musical art in musical psychology. It should be noted that the authors of many programs and techniques in music (D.B. Kabalevsky, V. Cohen, E.D. Kritskaya, L.V. Shkolyar, S. Rigina, T. Tyutyunnikova) rely on the associativity of music. The concept of «Association» is found in the psychology of memory, imagination, thinking and combines all mental cognitive processes into a single complex [3]. It means that associativity as a connection between objects and actions, symbols and sensations that accompany these objects, is a characteristic feature of the human mentality. Needless to say, associative abilities are not yet artistic (or scientific) talent in its entirety. But the fact that they are interrelated, because due to associations, human's mental activity becomes fuller, deeper, more colorful, and thinking, in particular artistic and figurative, becomes richer, life and the picture of the world is seen at the same time relief, Stereoscopically convex. It is not necessary to prove that this directly affects the processes of perception and experience of artistic and musical works, enabling the musician to go beyond professional categories, lifting him above the craft.

The involvement of poetic associations to activate the aesthetic sense is an old tradition in musical performance. Poetic images, paintings, associations, taken both from life and from other works of art, are well activated when setting tasks such as: «In this music as if...». The combination of audible sounds with extra-musical images and representations, which have a similar poetic basis, awakens emotional memory, which is said to be stronger than the memory of the mind. Imagery, intuition, associativity, imagination - the totality of these qualities of child psychology is nothing more than a wonderful children's, genetically determined, creative mechanism of cognition of life. The imagery of musical art allows us to speak within the framework of a musical work not only about the development of sensitivity and emotional responsiveness of the child, but also the formation of the skill of building associations. Children's intuition, not yet burdened with empirical formulas-stereotypes is a unique way of perceiving integrity. It can be proved with this example that young children are best grasp the general intonation of music, and imaginative thinking is their almost ready mechanism of «melting» the ordinary into the artistic.

The teacher-musician, if they establish a goal to go beyond the «artisan» manner of teaching, if they see their task in making it deeper, intensive in the processes of musical perception of a student, should logically use associations, working on this or that musical material, use them within their abilities and needs, in accordance with the individuality of the student, and with the specific situation at the lesson. Great examples of this were given by G.G. Neuhaus, who was able to find such comparisons, poetic analogies that the music immediately became clear and understandable. Undoubtedly, not every teacher-musician is able, like G.G. Neuhaus, to use «one hundred percent» of the possibilities of the associative method. At the same time, in principle, everyone should be able to use this methodical «lever» if necessary [4].

Associativity and imagination are phenomena of the same order, and if all of this to direct in the right path and to organize at the proper level, we will receive an effective technology for the musical development of the child about him. Here, a contradiction arises between the theory and practice of the development of associative thinking, which consists in the insufficient methodological competence of the teacher, and in insufficiently developed methods and techniques for understanding the material, the absence of which does not allow children to form the skill of building associations. The solution to this problem is the developing and using such methods in organizing the perception of music on the lesson, which will create the conditions for the formation of the skill of building associations among students.

An imagery of musical art allows us to speak within the framework of a musical work not only about the development of the child’s sensitivity and emotional responsiveness, but also about the formation of the skill of building associations. Associative thinking underlies the flexibility, creativity of thinking and individual competence. In D.K. Kirnarskaya we can find particular conclusions about some following features. The full perception of music requires the work of associative, motor, aural and logical memory. The perception of music process involves the work of intuitive, logical, practical, theoretical and figurative, associative thinking. The interconnection of the senses stimulates the work of the imagination in the process of perception. The process of music perception stimulates the work of the brain «frontal plane», which is responsible for encoding information in a linguistic variation; therefore music perception (listening) develops the skill Ofconstructing associative chains [4]. Thus, the identified factors contribute to the cognitive development of pupils in the process of music perception, which allows to optimize the learning process.

Research methods

Each method has its own methodical method aimed at the development of associative thinking. The Association, being a uniting link in psychology of psychic cognitive processes, served as a basis for a number of methods. Among the tasks one can find analogies that would orient students to the search for subjects similar to the data on some essential features, i.e. to the creation of an associative link between subjects. If it is, say, a school class, then, at first, each student performs the task independently, writing down answers, and then, shared his «discovery» with the whole class. After the written performance, there is an oral exchange between the children. If in individual lessons, then directly with the teacher.

Performing another task involves the ability to pick up as many musical analogies as possible to images of different complexity, shape and color of figures - «clouds», «shadows», «paint spots». Another option: listening to two different types of music and selecting synonyms or comparisons, i.e. associating the quality of an object with that of another object. The tasks on logic and verbal activity of children imply the development of children's ability to find cause-effect relations, reasoning, and correct design of their thoughts aloud. The task can be complicated by the fact that it is possible to offer students to compose not just a story, but a musical fairy tale.

Another type of task involves composing as many names as possible, reflecting the essence of musical works (i.e. turning extra-program music into program music). This type of task is similar to the free association test described in T.V. Popova's book «Association Experiment in Psychology». Another block of tasks - «Audial Contact» - develops attention and memory of students, ability to listen to oneself, to the world around, ability to «listen» and «hear» music. This technique aims to teach children to listen not only to the sounds of the world around them, but also to their own feelings. Gradually, in addition to physiological sensations, students pay attention to the shades of their mood. At the end of the study, the students transmitted whole complexes of feelings and emotions caused by life circumstances, musical pieces heard in class, or other factors, i.e. shared deeper inner feelings.

The «Dictionary» method helps to increase the active vocabulary of schoolchildren and is a list of mood words that a child may have difficulty accessing. The Emotional Kaleidoscope method is aimed at developing children's emotional and sensual sphere: the ability to differentiate one's own emotional states; to identify links with different types of arts; to compare life's emotions with artistic ones. In the tasks on the ratio of life and artistic emotions, students are invited to listen to two differently characterized works, and then relate them to their own emotional state and choose the most appropriate one for their mood. When listening again, express your mood in color, line, and ornamental elements, compare your own experiences with the embodiment in music and drawing.

The «Photography» method allows you to intuitively reflect in your drawing the visual images in harmony with the music in the course of perception. The authors used the method of plastic intonation in order to give the students the opportunity to experience the images of a piece of music in the most subtle way. The implementation of the method will allow children not only to describe musical images, but also to see and feel how the character of the plastic gesture changes in the process of music development. In the course of this task, students are offered to build interrelationships between word, gesture and feeling; such task can also be called developing associative thinking.

The method «Creative Marathon» develops the mental flexibility of students, their search and verbal activity through the ability to switch from one type of activity to another, the ability to express in a verbal form the logic of the development of their thoughts, the ability to mobilize at the right time their attention and memory. It includes tasks on timbre, rhythmic, plastic, melodic and verbal fantasy. The development of children's timbre fantasy is promoted by tasks in which it was necessary to: learn the timbre of a voice or instrument; create timbre improvisations on the theme of nature; compose a fairy tale, describing the course of events and imitating the voices of heroes; compose a musical score using the timbre of a noise orchestra; compose musical scores of various circumstances of life (these tasks form the basis of the method «From life to music») [5].


Thus, the majority of creative development tasks are connected with association. Application of creative tasks aimed at the development of associative thinking is possible in various programs and methods of teaching piano instruments, guitar, dombra, as well as vocal teaching. It should be said that the associative series, if any, is always felt in the game of the musician-executor. And it creates a very special psychological aura around his play. Moreover, things are even more striking. Picturesque and imaginative representations and analogies that live in the consciousness of the musician and seem to be a purely personal, deeply intimate treasure, sometimes guessed by the audience, at least, the most sensitive and insightful part of it. They guess and almost exactly decipher, despite their extreme subjectivism. Music gives birth to images that are individual for everyone... But the brighter the performer, the stronger his hypnotic message, the more similar the images that a thousand listeners will have.


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Year: 2019
Category: Pedagogy