Music is about more than entertainment. It lies deep in the human psyche, spanning all eras and cultures. People seem to be "hard-wired" for music. Children can learn to use that hard-wiring, along with a more conscious understanding of music, to boost their creativity and thinking skills. It helps very young children learn about patterns and the relationships between sounds - crucial in learning to read. But music for its own sake is also important. Through it, children can communicate without language.
Today The TES launches its Music for the Millennium campaign. Our aim is to secure an entitlement for all pupils to learn an instrument at primary school. We also want to highlight the value of music in schools, despite the current emphasis on "the basics", and to help find ways to make it better. Our survey in today's TES shows that one in five English primary schools plan to reduce their music teaching. That is a shame and a worry.