Wanderlust

"Yet it is in our idleness, in our dreams, that the submerged truth sometimes comes to the top." - Virginia Woolfe, A Room of One's Own

neurosciencestuff:

Musical Training Offsets Some Academic Achievement Gaps
Learning to play a musical instrument or to sing can help disadvantaged children strengthen their reading and language skills, according to research presented at the American Psychological Association’s 122nd Annual Convention.
The findings, which involved hundreds of kids participating in musical training programs in Chicago and Los Angeles public schools, highlight the role learning music can have on the brains of youth in impoverished areas, according to presenter Nina Kraus, PhD, a neurobiologist at Northwestern University.
“Research has shown that there are differences in the brains of children raised in impoverished environments that affect their ability to learn,” said Kraus. “While more affluent students do better in school than children from lower income backgrounds, we are finding that musical training can alter the nervous system to create a better learner and help offset this academic gap.” Up until now, research on the impact of musical training has been primarily conducted on middle- to upper-income music students participating in private music lessons, she said.
Kraus’s lab research has concluded that musical training appears to enhance the way children’s nervous systems process sounds in a busy environment, such as a classroom or a playground. This improved neural function may lead to enhanced memory and attention spans which, in turn, allow kids to focus better in the classroom and improve their communication skills, she said.
Many of Kraus’s study participants are part of the Harmony Project in Los Angeles, which was founded by fellow presenter Margaret Martin, DrPH. In her most recent research, Kraus studied children beginning when they were in first and second grade. Half participated in musical training and the other half were randomly selected from the program’s lengthy waiting list and received no musical training during the first year of the study. Children who had no musical training had diminished reading scores while Harmony Project participants’ reading scores remained unchanged over the same time span. 
Kraus’s lab also found that, after two years, neural responses to sound in adolescent music students were faster and more precise than in students in another type of enrichment class. The researchers tested the auditory abilities in adolescents from lower economic backgrounds at three public high schools in Chicago. Over two years, half of the students participated in either band or choir during each school day while the other half were enrolled in Junior Reserve Officer’s Training Corps classes, which teaches character education, achievement, wellness, leadership and diversity. All participants had comparable reading ability and IQs at the start of the study. The researchers recorded the children’s brain waves as they listened to a repeated syllable against soft background sound, which made it harder for the brain to process. The researchers repeated measures after one year and again at the two-year mark. They found music students’ neural responses had strengthened while the JROTC students’ responses had remained the same. Interestingly, the differences in the music students’ brain waves in response to sounds as described above occurred after two years but not at one year, which showed that these programs cannot be used as quick fixes, Kraus said. This is the strongest evidence to date that public school music education in lower-income students can lead to better sound processing in the brain when compared to other types of enrichment education, she added.
Even after the lessons stop, the brain still reaps benefits, according to studies on the long-term benefits of music lessons. In one study, Kraus’s team surveyed college students and asked them how many years they had music training. As they found with the elementary school students, college students who had more than five years of musical training in elementary school or high school had improved neural responses to sound when compared to college students who had had no musical training.
The Harmony Project provides instruments for the students who participate five or more hours a week in musical instruction and ensemble rehearsals. The project is year-round and tuition-free based on income, said Martin. Many of the programs build full-time bands in neighborhoods where the students live and the students agree to commit to the program from elementary school through high school, she said.
“We’re spending millions of dollars on drugs to help kids focus and here we have a non-pharmacologic intervention that thousands of disadvantaged kids devote themselves to in their non-school hours — that works,” Martin said. “Learning to make music appears to remodel our kids’ brains in ways that facilitates and improves their ability to learn.”
The Harmony Project has launched programs in other urban school districts, including Miami, New Orleans, Tulsa, Oklahoma, Kansas City, Missouri and Ventura, California.
(Image: Shutterstock)

neurosciencestuff:

Musical Training Offsets Some Academic Achievement Gaps

Learning to play a musical instrument or to sing can help disadvantaged children strengthen their reading and language skills, according to research presented at the American Psychological Association’s 122nd Annual Convention.

The findings, which involved hundreds of kids participating in musical training programs in Chicago and Los Angeles public schools, highlight the role learning music can have on the brains of youth in impoverished areas, according to presenter Nina Kraus, PhD, a neurobiologist at Northwestern University.

“Research has shown that there are differences in the brains of children raised in impoverished environments that affect their ability to learn,” said Kraus. “While more affluent students do better in school than children from lower income backgrounds, we are finding that musical training can alter the nervous system to create a better learner and help offset this academic gap.” Up until now, research on the impact of musical training has been primarily conducted on middle- to upper-income music students participating in private music lessons, she said.

Kraus’s lab research has concluded that musical training appears to enhance the way children’s nervous systems process sounds in a busy environment, such as a classroom or a playground. This improved neural function may lead to enhanced memory and attention spans which, in turn, allow kids to focus better in the classroom and improve their communication skills, she said.

Many of Kraus’s study participants are part of the Harmony Project in Los Angeles, which was founded by fellow presenter Margaret Martin, DrPH. In her most recent research, Kraus studied children beginning when they were in first and second grade. Half participated in musical training and the other half were randomly selected from the program’s lengthy waiting list and received no musical training during the first year of the study. Children who had no musical training had diminished reading scores while Harmony Project participants’ reading scores remained unchanged over the same time span. 

Kraus’s lab also found that, after two years, neural responses to sound in adolescent music students were faster and more precise than in students in another type of enrichment class. The researchers tested the auditory abilities in adolescents from lower economic backgrounds at three public high schools in Chicago. Over two years, half of the students participated in either band or choir during each school day while the other half were enrolled in Junior Reserve Officer’s Training Corps classes, which teaches character education, achievement, wellness, leadership and diversity. All participants had comparable reading ability and IQs at the start of the study. The researchers recorded the children’s brain waves as they listened to a repeated syllable against soft background sound, which made it harder for the brain to process. The researchers repeated measures after one year and again at the two-year mark. They found music students’ neural responses had strengthened while the JROTC students’ responses had remained the same. Interestingly, the differences in the music students’ brain waves in response to sounds as described above occurred after two years but not at one year, which showed that these programs cannot be used as quick fixes, Kraus said. This is the strongest evidence to date that public school music education in lower-income students can lead to better sound processing in the brain when compared to other types of enrichment education, she added.

Even after the lessons stop, the brain still reaps benefits, according to studies on the long-term benefits of music lessons. In one study, Kraus’s team surveyed college students and asked them how many years they had music training. As they found with the elementary school students, college students who had more than five years of musical training in elementary school or high school had improved neural responses to sound when compared to college students who had had no musical training.

The Harmony Project provides instruments for the students who participate five or more hours a week in musical instruction and ensemble rehearsals. The project is year-round and tuition-free based on income, said Martin. Many of the programs build full-time bands in neighborhoods where the students live and the students agree to commit to the program from elementary school through high school, she said.

“We’re spending millions of dollars on drugs to help kids focus and here we have a non-pharmacologic intervention that thousands of disadvantaged kids devote themselves to in their non-school hours — that works,” Martin said. “Learning to make music appears to remodel our kids’ brains in ways that facilitates and improves their ability to learn.”

The Harmony Project has launched programs in other urban school districts, including Miami, New Orleans, Tulsa, Oklahoma, Kansas City, Missouri and Ventura, California.

(Image: Shutterstock)

On Illness, Belief, and Saying Yes

thebodyisnotanapology:

Andrea Gibson’s essay is submitted as part of The Body is Not An Apology’s #WhenWeSayYES Campaign. Raising money to build the world’s most powerful radical self love website. Give Here:www.igg.me/at/whenwesayyes

image

[The above photograph is of Artist Activist Andrea Gibson in a bent over…


“I know its wrong but Im in love with him and I’m letting him use me.” (r.i.d)

Ten Women I Have Been Warned Against Becoming:

1. The Girl Who Takes Up Too Much Space, always, her shoulders too wide in stairwells, her hips too big in doorways, her voice too loud in classes. This woman does not understand the art of crumbling, of curling herself tight like the spiral of a fern, soft, delicate, unwilling to reach out the ivy of her fingers to grasp onto what should rightfully be hers. This is a beast, an elephant, a moving mountain and she is capable of flattening you, she is capable of ruining you, she is capable of making you feel as small and insignificant in her life as she is supposed to be. You are this woman’s footnote to history, you are her side note in song lyrics, you are constantly interrupted by her with a witty joke you wish you thought of. I asked what the problem was with being a steamroller instead of a sunflower and I was laughed down.

2. The Beautiful One, the long hair or the slim waist or the pretty eyes or the lips like bowstrings. This woman looks good in everything because she’s confident in whatever you put her in. She’ll cut her hair short on you no matter how you like it, she’ll wear high heels and step on your opinions, she’ll look hot as hell no matter what size she is. See, the reason you can’t trust her is because women like this don’t need your permission, they’ll do as they please and get away with it. They’ll say no to you, over and over. Teach your daughters that beautiful means dangerous, teach them to distrust women who love themselves. Equate beautiful with vapid, equate pretty with stupid, take their power from them. Say they’re vain for their makeup, refuse to see them without it. These women are snakes, they are serpents. I said maybe the problem lies with you being unable to control yourself and was told to get off my pedestal.

3. A Bitch. Women are supposed to be ladies in the street but will tear skin under sheets. I’m told: Never raise your voice. Speak gently. Submit. Hold your opinion against your lips and when you admit to it, make sure it comes out as a butterfly wing suggestion. Don’t disagree. Don’t undermine someone else’s authority, regardless of whether or not they deserve your respect. Someone touches you, just move away from them. Don’t hit. Don’t talk back. Be like the ruins of Rome, only beautiful if you can’t hear your quiet death.

4. The Needy One. I have heard how others spit when they talk about how she gave you everything and you shoved it back down her throat until she choked on it, until she came back crawling and asked you what she did, until her palms and knees were scraped for want of just a little affection - never be this woman, I’m told, because she’s a joke and the joke is that she dared to have more emotion than you did. The truth is, I’m told, the one who cares less in a partnership is the one who wins. I didn’t know this was a competition.

5. The Cock Tease, certified stripper, how dare that girl look like that and not want me to sleep with her. Lust is always personified as a lady in red with a dress slit up her thigh. Lust is sinful because it’s power, it’s not asking for attention - it’s demanding it. I’m told she is the worst kind of woman, that looking good is supposed to be some kind of shame on her kin. I’m told not to leave the house in such a short skirt, not with a shirt so low, not with a lace back, not with high heels, not dressed like that. My lipstick can’t be too red, my hair can’t be too mussed, I can’t just “turn someone on like that and then leave them wanting.” I mentioned that instant gratification actually ruins our psyche and was told that being led on was “exhausting.” I said that there was a difference between purposefully tricking someone into liking you and just being attractive or friendly. I was told there’s also a difference between coffee and tea but both result in caffeine. I said, “I’ve been turned on in class by the girls I talk to but I didn’t expect anything from them,” and they said, “It’s different, you’re not a man,” but couldn’t explain where that difference was.

6. A Slut, obviously ruined by another person’s touch. It doesn’t matter how many people she’s actually been with, it’s all about the rumors she carries with her. Easy. Harlot. You’ll still try to get with her, you’ll still take her into your bed and kiss her and say things you don’t mean - but you’ll defame her name when you talk to your buddies. My father used to say “A slut is fine for the night, but the virgin is who you take home and marry.” Maybe he didn’t know he was teaching his daughter to hate her sexuality. Maybe he didn’t know that every time she’d be kissed, her whole system would shake until she felt ready to combust, shame and self-hatred shivering against her spine. Maybe he didn’t know she’d disconnect emotions and sex because he always told her, “Boys are different, they won’t care about you.” Nobody said to her that it was okay to experiment. See, the funny thing is, I’m a dancer so I know exactly where my center of gravity is. I know how hard I’ll fall in each direction. Yet out of fear of getting hurt, I won’t let a single person inside of my bed.

7. The Soulmate. Never love romance more than you love being cynical. Never show weakness, never like pink, never think maybe you might find someone nice and settle down with them. Someone will find you, I was told, And if you’re lucky, he’ll put up with you when you start getting old. Never be the woman who believes in happily ever after, never be dumb enough to think maybe someone could love you after all of your mistakes. It has nothing to do with whether or not a family is important to you and you’re in a good place where a relationship would make your life better - you’re not a princess. You don’t get married, you settle.

8. The Girl With Strength, who can outrun everyone and who is stronger than her boyfriend. “See the thing about boys,” says my daddy, “Is that you have to let them win.” I sat at home and read stories about Artemis and wanted to become the huntress, too. I wanted to howl at the moon, I wanted to slay the beasts that bested me, I wanted to rule my kingdom with bloody fists. But girls are never athletes, never supposed to be “built,” regardless of the fact civilizations were constructed on our spines and we made homes in war by the steel of our ribs. Never be strong. We are supposed to wilt.

9. The Lady CEO: because if you choose work over family, are you really a girl? How dare you fight your way to the top through every pair of eyes that bore through your blouse, through every meeting where you were hushed by the sound of someone else talking, through every time someone called you “sweetie,” how dare you yearn for something. Is your husband the stay-at-home one? I can’t imagine how that is going. He’s not a real man, after all. I don’t give it long before the divorce. How dare you decide you’re happy being single. Don’t you know you’re supposed to bear children. Where is your honor? Where is your wisdom? Who cares if you are the leader, the best suited for your position, the quickest-thinking, the one who makes the hardest clients come back again. Don’t you see? Across history, women have been terrible at success. They always lose their man in the end. (When I said, “I would rather be a famous author than a mediocre mother,” I was told, “No, don’t worry, you’ll be a fine mommy.”)

10. THE GIRL I AM: FIRECRACKER AND DON’T YOU FUCKING FORGET IT I’LL RIP YOU TO SHREDS AND I WON’T FUCKING REGRET IT I’M NOT YOUR PRETTY GIRL I’M NOT YOUR ANYTHING I’M PERFECT, MOTHERFUCKER, AND I’M NOT GOING TO GIVE UP WHAT I’M DOING. I DON’T WANT TO BE “LADYLIKE” THAT LITERALLY MEANS NOTHING I’M NOT GOING TO STOP STANDING UP AND DEMANDING WHAT’S COMING TO ME. I’M GONNA BE SOMEBODY. I’M GONNA MAKE THEM REMEMBER ME. I REFUSE TO BE OVERSHADOWED IN HISTORY. I DON’T KNOW WHAT YOU WERE TRYING TO CREATE BUT YOU MADE ME A DRAGON YOU PUT ME IN THE FIRE AND WHEN I STOPPED BURNING I LEARNED HOW TO GLOW DON’T THINK YOU CAN STOP ME YOU CAN’T TAME A TORNADO.

—   In respectful response to a poem tilted, “Ten men women have warned me against becoming." /// r.i.d (via inkskinned)

buttonpoetry:

Cam Awkward-Rich - “Break-Up Letters” (Rustbelt 2014)

"How could you not be a prophet of your body? How could you stop saying it’s name?"

Performing during finals at the 2014 Rustbelt Regional Poetry Slam.

cross-connect:

Artist on tumblr - Julie Sarloutte is a French artist, graduate from the National School of Fine Arts in Paris, France. She focuses on embroidery, but she isn’t making clothes; using string, Sarloutte creates pieces so detailed that they appear to be composed of paint strokes instead of individual stitches. Sarloutte draws inspiration from technology and the media, as her work focuses on what the world news is covering. Omnipresent tragedies such as war, hostages, natural disasters and repression are most often the subjects of her embroideries. She also works with painting and mosaic, every method leading to what she believes is an unexpected contrast between the subject she is portraying and the material it is being made from via

Posted to Cross Connect by Margaret

(via frenzyandlightning)

rnonsters:

Poussey on: love 

(Source: youtube.com)

5 Things You Shouldn't Say to Women Who Don't Want Children