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This is an IELTS writing task 2 sample answer essay on the topic of whether or not every child should be taught to play a musical instrument.

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Dave

IELTS Essay: Education

Some educators believe that every child should be taught how to play a musical instrument.

To what extent do you agree or disagree?

Many teachers feel that learning to play a musical instrument is an indispensable part of a student’s education. In my opinion, there are socioeconomic concerns with this tenet but it is still advisable overall.

Detractors can easily argue not every child has access to the supportive environment required to learn an instrument. Firstly, a family might not have enough money if a child wants to learn piano or buy a quality guitar. There are also related expenses that include the fees for private lessons and other equipment. Added to this, they will need their parents to have enough time to drive them to and from rehearsals and recitals. At home, the entire family will have to listen to them practice and this could be contentious if there are a lot of people living in one home or a child shares their room with siblings or relatives. All these factors affect underprivileged children and place them at a decided disadvantage.

Nonetheless, the above issues can be mitigated with more funding for schools and the developmental benefits of music outweigh all other concerns. Research has shown that in early development, physical changes take place in the brains of both children and adolescents. Some of these relate to music and children who take up an instrument, even if they quit later, have demonstrated improved cognitive flexibility and creativity in longitudinal studies across a variety of cultural backgrounds. Apart from the scientific grounding, it also common sense that children will feel more fulfilled and derive a lot of joy from playing music. This can provide a boost to not only academics but also their long-term mental well-being.

In conclusion, though policymakers will have to account for accessibility issues, learning an instrument is key for neurodevelopment. Schools, parents, and teachers should work together to ensure the best chances of success.

Analysis

1. Many teachers feel that learning to play a musical instrument is an indispensable part of a student’s education. 2. In my opinion, there are socioeconomic concerns with this tenet but it is still advisable overall.

  1. Paraphrase the overall essay topic.
  2. Write a clear opinion. Read more about introductions here.

1. Detractors can easily argue not every child has access to the supportive environment required to learn an instrument. 2. Firstly, a family might not have enough money if a child wants to learn piano or buy a quality guitar. 3. There are also related expenses that include the fees for private lessons and other equipment. 4. Added to this, they will need their parents to have enough time to drive them to and from rehearsals and recitals. 5. At home, the entire family will have to listen to them practice and this could be contentious if there are a lot of people living in one home or a child shares their room with siblings or relatives. 6. All these factors affect underprivileged children and place them at a decided disadvantage.

  1. Write a clear topic sentence with your main idea at the end.
  2. Begin to develop your main idea.
  3. Use a real or hypothetical example.
  4. Add more detail to fully support your main idea.
  5. Don’t switch to a new main idea.
  6. Finish with a summary.

1. Nonetheless, the above issues can be mitigated with more funding for schools and the developmental benefits of music outweigh all other concerns. 2. Research has shown that in early development, physical changes take place in the brains of both children and adolescents. 3. Some of these relate to music and children who take up an instrument, even if they quit later, have demonstrated improved cognitive flexibility and creativity in longitudinal studies across a variety of cultural backgrounds. 4. Apart from the scientific grounding, it also common sense that children will feel more fulfilled and derive a lot of joy from playing music. 5. This can provide a boost to not only academics but also their long-term mental well-being.

  1. Write another topic sentence with a clear main idea at the end.
  2. Use research to support your idea.
  3. Develop the research.
  4. Add in more detail if possible.
  5. Conclude with a strong statement.

1. In conclusion, though policymakers will have to account for accessibility issues, learning an instrument is key for neurodevelopment. 2. Schools, parents, and teachers should work together to ensure the best chances of success.

  1. Repeat your opinion and summarise your main ideas.
  2. Add a final thought. Read more about conclusions here.

Vocabulary

What do the words in bold below mean?

Many teachers feel that learning to play a musical instrument is an indispensable part of a student’s education. In my opinion, there are socioeconomic concerns with this tenet but it is still advisable overall.

Detractors can easily argue not every child has access to the supportive environment required to learn an instrument. Firstly, a family might not have enough money if a child wants to learn piano or buy a quality guitar. There are also related expenses that include the fees for private lessons and other equipment. Added to this, they will need their parents to have enough time to drive them to and from rehearsals and recitals. At home, the entire family will have to listen to them practice and this could be contentious if there are a lot of people living in one home or a child shares their room with siblings or relatives. All these factors affect underprivileged children and place them at a decided disadvantage.

Nonetheless, the above issues can be mitigated with more funding for schools and the developmental benefits of music outweigh all other concerns. Research has shown that in early development, physical changes take place in the brains of both children and adolescents. Some of these relate to music and children who take up an instrument, even if they quit later, have demonstrated improved cognitive flexibility and creativity in longitudinal studies across a variety of cultural backgrounds. Apart from the scientific grounding, it also common sense that children will feel more fulfilled and derive a lot of joy from playing music. This can provide a boost to not only academics but also their long-term mental well-being.

In conclusion, though policymakers will have to account for accessibility issues, learning an instrument is key for neurodevelopment. Schools, parents, and teachers should work together to ensure the best chances of success.

Answers

indispensable crucial

socioeconomic concerns questions about class

tenet principle

advisable overall in general good

detractors critics

easily argue point out effortlessly

access to can get to

supportive environment required good family support

firstly first of all

quality guitar good guitar

related expenses other money that must be spent

fees cost

private lessons one on one lessons

other equipment other musical items

added to this moreover

rehearsals practicing

recitals a mini-concert

entire family whole family

contentious controversial

shares their room with live in the same room

factors elements

underprivileged children poor kids

place them at a decided disadvantage definitely worse off

nonetheless regardless

mitigated somewhat countered by

funding money for

developmental benefits positive impact on how they grow up

outweigh all other concerns more important

in early development as kids

take place happen

adolescents teenagers

relate to have to do with

take up start

quit stop

demonstrated improved cognitive flexibility smarter

longitudinal studies research over many years

cultural backgrounds where someone comes from

apart from besides

scientific grounding research basis

feel more fulfilled feel satisfied

derive get from

provide a boost increase

not onlybut also also includes

long-term mental well-being mental health

policymakers politicians

account for accessibility issues think about providing it for all

key important

neurodevelopment brain development

work together collaborate

ensure make sure

best chances of success will likely work out

Pronunciation

ˌɪndɪsˈpɛnsəbl 
ˌsəʊsɪəʊˌɛkəˈnɒmɪk kənˈsɜːnz 
ˈtiːnɛt 
ədˈvaɪzəbl ˈəʊvərɔːl
dɪˈtræktəz 
ˈiːzɪli ˈɑːgjuː 
ˈæksɛs tuː 
səˈpɔːtɪv ɪnˈvaɪərənmənt rɪˈkwaɪəd 
ˈfɜːstli
ˈkwɒlɪti gɪˈtɑː
rɪˈleɪtɪd ɪksˈpɛnsɪz 
fiːz 
ˈpraɪvɪt ˈlɛsnz 
ˈʌðər ɪˈkwɪpmənt
ˈædɪd tuː ðɪs
rɪˈhɜːsəlz 
rɪˈsaɪtlz
ɪnˈtaɪə ˈfæmɪli 
kənˈtɛnʃəs 
ʃeəz ðeə ruːm wɪð 
ˈfæktəz 
ˌʌndəˈprɪvɪlɪʤd ˈʧɪldrən 
pleɪs ðɛm æt ə dɪˈsaɪdɪd ˌdɪsədˈvɑːntɪʤ
ˌnʌnðəˈlɛs
ˈmɪtɪgeɪtɪd 
ˈfʌndɪŋ 
dɪˌvɛləpˈmɛntl ˈbɛnɪfɪts 
aʊtˈweɪ ɔːl ˈʌðə kənˈsɜːnz
ɪn ˈɜːli dɪˈvɛləpmənt
teɪk pleɪs 
ˌædəʊˈlɛsnts
rɪˈleɪt tuː 
teɪk ʌp 
kwɪt 
ˈdɛmənstreɪtɪd ɪmˈpruːvd ˈkɒgnɪtɪv ˌflɛksɪˈbɪlɪti 
ˌlɒnʤɪˈtjuːdɪnl ˈstʌdiz 
ˈkʌlʧərəl ˈbækgraʊndz
əˈpɑːt frɒm 
ˌsaɪənˈtɪfɪk ˈgraʊndɪŋ
fiːl mɔː fʊlˈfɪld 
dɪˈraɪv 
prəˈvaɪd ə buːst 
nɒt ˈəʊnli 
bʌt ˈɔːlsəʊ 
ˈlɒŋtɜːm ˈmɛntl wɛl-ˈbiːɪŋ
policymakers 
əˈkaʊnt fɔːr əkˌsɛsɪˈbɪlɪti ˈɪʃuːz
kiː 
neurodevelopment
wɜːk təˈgɛðə 
ɪnˈʃʊə 
bɛst ˈʧɑːnsɪz ɒv səkˈsɛs

Vocabulary Practice

Remember and fill in the blanks:

Many teachers feel that learning to play a musical instrument is an i_________________e part of a student’s education. In my opinion, there are s_____________________s with this t_______t but it is still a__________________l.

D_______________s can e____________e not every child has a___________o the s___________________________________d to learn an instrument. F__________y, a family might not have enough money if a child wants to learn piano or buy a q_______________r. There are also r________________s that include the f____s for p_________________s and o_________________t. A_________________s, they will need their parents to have enough time to drive them to and from r______________s and r____________s. At home, the e______________y will have to listen to them practice and this could be c______________s if there are a lot of people living in one home or a child s_______________________h siblings or relatives. All these f__________s affect u__________________________n and p_______________________________________e.

N____________________s, the above issues can be m______________d with more f____________g for schools and the d_______________________s of music o____________________________s. Research has shown that i_____________________________t, physical changes t____________e in the brains of both children and a_________________s. Some of these r__________o music and children who t__________p an instrument, even if they q____t later, have d__________________________________________y and creativity in l_______________________s across a variety of c____________________s. A____________m the s_____________________g, it also common sense that children will f____________________d and d_________e a lot of joy from playing music. This can p________________t to n_____________y academics b__________o their l________________________________g.

In conclusion, though p__________________s will have to a_____________________________s, learning an instrument is k___y for n____________________________t. Schools, parents, and teachers should w_________________________r to e_____________e the b________________________s.

Listening Practice

Listen about this topic below:

Reading Practice

Do some extra reading on this topic below as well:

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2019/08/19/making-music-from-the-mets-forgotten-treasures

Speaking Practice

Practice with the following questions from the real IELTS speaking exam:

Music

  1. Do you like music?
  2. Which types of music do you like?
  3. Would you like to learn a musical instrument?
  4. Do you prefer listening to music by yourself or with someone else?

Writing Practice

Write about the following related topic then check with my sample answer below:

Many people believe that music is just a form of entertainment, whilst others believe that music has a much larger impact on society today.

Discuss both views and give your own opinion. 


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