The purpose of the creative process general education goal is to expose students to the arts and challenge them academically in a different manner. I elected to take the History of Rock to fulfill the goal and it was definitely a challenge.
I am not musically inclined and the only musical thing I have ever done was play the saxophone in the fifth grade. At the beginning of the class I couldn’t define a melody or pitch, much less identify examples in specific songs. Our professor had flashcards with our names written on them and would randomly call on a student to answer specific questions about song elements as part of our participation grade. In the beginning of the class I could not identify the song elements, which made it hard to participate and perform well on the tests. I attended office hours each week and worked for hours analyzing the songs to discuss beforehand. At the end of the semester, I was able to identify the song elements if different rock songs from different decades without analyzing each song intensely. I did not enjoy the class during the semester, but I did learn how rewarding working hard to master a difficult task is to a student.
My favorite part of the class was our interview project. Each student had to interview an adult about popular music and their involvement with the music during their lifetime. I elected to interview my English teacher from high school over fall break. She went to concerts and would listen to records on repeat during her teen years, so I knew she would be the perfect person to interview. My favorite part of the assignment was listening to someone talk about musical events that they experienced and I had only read about in textbooks. The interview was challenging in a way that I was not expecting. The teacher that I interviewed expected me to know detailed history of rock music from her lifetime, which was one of the goals of my class. However, when I did my interview I had only learned information from a few decades. As the interview progressed, my teacher made references to events that I had not learned about yet. I took detailed notes as she told comprehensive stories about her teen years that I later referenced after we covered that decade in class to write my final paper.
Overall, my history of rock class was a rewarding challenge.