Headphones vs. High School

Coco Spicer

Image result for earbuds in school

In more recent years, listening to music while working to improve productivity has increased drastically. People now depend on music to improve their focus, attention span, and overall productivity while working on something, whether that be school work or actual work. While listening to music while working can help, depending on the person, it can also be distracting, and some argue that it is impossible that listening to music, especially through headphones, could be beneficial in accomplishing tasks. It has been proved in most cases to be helpful, and help students focus while they work independently; although there may be some potential problems with letting students play their own music, there are many benefits to it.

“Listening to music while working can help students concentrate, drown out other conversations or any bothersome activities going on around the room, or relieve students from stress.”  Many people think that the music or headphones might be distracting, rather than helpful, which is true in some cases, but majority of the time, the music acts as more of a background noise to block out other distractions.  “Many students think listening to music helps them focus and puts them in a happy mood, which would improve performance in schools and bring down the bullying and stress levels in school. The music not only helps eliminate ‘white noises’ but also creates a sustained supportive ambiance.” Everybody is different, some people can only focus when listening to classical music, others work perfectly with blaring rock music coming out of their headphones, so it’s not fair to say that all music helps people focus, because it depends on who the person is, what the work is, and what type of music they are listening to. “In a nutshell, music puts us in a better mood, which makes us better at studying – but it also distracts us, which makes us worse at studying. So if you want to study effectively with music, you want to reduce how distracting music can be, and increase the level to which the music keeps you in a good mood.”

When Kyleigh Cranston, a senior here at Ipswich High School, was asked her opinion on the matter, and if she listens to music in school, she said “Yes I do; I think it helps me focus and work more productively. I think all students should have the opportunity to listen to music while working independently in class if it helps them focus better.” However, Mr. Hughes, math teacher, said “Generally, I don’t listen to music while working,” which proves that everybody is different with their preferences. Our school does have a policy that restricts students from wearing their headphones in the hallway, and students are supposed to only listen to music or wear headphones when they are allowed time in class to work independently and are given permission. This rule was put into place mainly to ensure the safety of all students; if there is a fire drill, or other emergency situation, a student walking the halls with loud music going right into their ears could prevent them from being aware of the situation, or hearing important information. Students who break this rule and wear their headphones outside the classroom, get their headphones taken away from them until the end of the day, which I think is a good rule, because it is simply a safety precaution, and it is not necessary to listen to music while walking the halls, compared to while working independently and productively on an assignment in class.

In conclusion, students should continue to be able to listen to their music while working in class if it helps them concentrate on the task at hand and they know how to limit the volume of their music to ensure that no one else can hear it, and that it is not too loud and could possibly damage their ears.