Listening to Waves, a project sponsored by the National Science Foundation, seeks to inspire students to develop a deeper appreciation of both science and sound. We aim to transmit to the students the sense of wonder that we feel towards the sonic world, helping them become aware of the sounds in the environment and draw a connection between the perceptual and physical aspects of sound and music.
Our group, based at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) has been investigating the relationship between music performance, brain function, and general aspects of cognition. Since much of our work involves education, we have conducted much of our research at various schools. During the course of our work, we became deeply involved in teaching students the science of sound and music, including their physical, perceptual, and neural aspects. Given the great interest that these activities generated in students and teachers we decided to expand this work into a stand-alone outreach program. The Listening to Waves program developed from our work at the Temporal Dynamics of Learning Center (TDLC), a National Science Foundation sponsored conglomerate of laboratories committed to bridging the gap between the scientific study of learning and the educational system. Our program is now funded through National Science Foundation grant Innovative Technologies for Students and Teachers (ITEST).
We have served more than 1500 students across San Diego County, including students in the High Tech High School System, the Boys and Girls Club of San Diego, the Museum School, and the Sweetwater School District.