How should music lessons be funded? Sample Answer

Below is a student’s discussion essay. Read through the essay and then answer the questions below.

Some people think that the government should fund music, dance and arts lessons for children. Others think that they should be funded by private businesses or by children’s families. Discuss both views and give your own opinion.

Student Essay 

It is argued in the statement that government should contribute in music, dance and arts learning of the children whereas many others think that it is the responsibility of parents or local organisations to support these programs. In my opinion, the above mentioned subjects should be aided by the concerning and governing bodies of a state.

On the one hand, it is often thought by many people that government of a state should contribute in learning of arts and cultural subjects such as music and dance for the children. For example, in some secondary schools, government provides material required in the construction of different art projects or instruments like guitar and keyboard to learn music. This example clearly shows that by providing support to the young students, government could easily promote cultural and traditional values all around the world. Hence, governments are responsible for the growth of arts and music.

On the other hand, according to some people, instead of governing bodies, children’s families or private agencies should participate in the growth and learning of music, dance or other arts work. For instance, students of a single class may not be equally interested in learning music or dance, so funding by the government could be wasted in this manner. Therefore, it is important that parents of interested kids should groom their children by sending them to the private institutions where they can enjoy their preferences. In this way, funds by the government can be utilized well on some other things.

To conclude, I believe that government should provide all the facilities of learning arts and music, as this is the cultural heritage which should be preserved internationally.


  1. Does the student give a clear opinion? What is their opinion? Answer
    The answer is given quite well. The student believes the government should pay for the lessons. However, the vocabulary is not completely clear “the concerning and governing bodies of a state.” The word “concerning” is irrelevant and is slightly confusing. The thesis statement should be very clear and vocabulary 100% accurate so only write about the government.
  2. Is the information in the introduction relevant?Answer
    Yes, the information given is mostly relevant. There is no unnecessary information given. There is a background statement and a thesis statement. However, the introduction could be improved by using more precise vocabulary. For example, the students wrote “government should contribute in music, dance and arts learning” but this essay is about money and funding not just contributing. Again in the thesis statement the student writes “should be aided” but this essay is not about giving help, it’s about money. “The student is trying to avoid repeating the word “funding” but it should be repeated – you can get a band score 9 even with that word repeated. Another way to say it is “pay for”.
  3. What reasons are given in the essay for the government to fund lessons in school? Can you think of other reasons?Answer
    The ideas are not completely clear but they are that the government can pay for equipment and can help in the growth of the arts. This could be written more clearly “One reason for government funding is that the government has more financial resources to pay for expensive equipment needed to run top quality classes. Another benefit of state funded lessons is that they can help promote these subjects on a wider scale.” Thes e are the main reasons. 
  4. What reasons are given in the essay for lessons to be privately funded? Are they correct? Can you think of more?Answer
    The reasons are that students are not all equally interested in art or music and another reason is that students can enjoy their preferences in private lessons. These are good reasons but in this paragraph there is also disadvantages of government funding – that is not needed in this paragraph. This paragraph should be about private funding only. Other reasons why privately funded lessons are better – 1. teachers can adapt lessons to suit the individual learner 2. the time and length of lesson is more flexible 3. classes are either individual or one-to-one so there’s more feedback and support
  5. Can you find an example of non academic words?Answer
    Yes, the word “kid”. This student is worried about repeating the word “children” and it over paraphrasing. Children are children – the word will be repeated. “kid” is not academic. Also the word “like” used as a linking device is not academic. 
  6. What band score would you give this essay?Answer
     The essay structure is excellent. The ideas are mostly relevant. It would probably get about 6.5. It could get band score 7 if the vocabulary was more accurate and the student wrote about funding rather than helping.
  7. What advice would you give this student to improve?Answer
    Don’t try to paraphrase all words. Decide which words can and cannot be paraphrase accurately. Also don’t change the meaning of the essay. Over paraphrasing is as problematic as under paraphrasing. This essay is about funding not about contributing or aiding. Underline the key words in the essay question and always make sure you are answering them.

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  1. Hi Liz,
    Can I write both views in question which ask,to what extent do you agree or disagree ?
    Some tutors are saying you should present both sides …

    • If there are two issue to address, you must present your view on both. If there is one issue, you present your view on it and nothing more. You do not write about other people’s opinions.

  2. Dear Liz,

    Thanks for the wonderful tips and ideas.
    I have one question for this essay . For BP1

    Govt should fund for art because it will have clear benefits out of this considering the impact art has on different sectors such as entertainment and tourism .

    Is this a valid topic sentence.need your opinion

    • Your topic sentence is unclear. This is about funding lessons – you need to state that again in your topic sentence. A topic sentence should be a direct answer – a full answer.

  3. Thank you for providing information and tips on writing essays, Liz. Most of the sites that I browse confuse me and provide too much information, overwhelming I guess. But your lessons are clear and condesed and I find it useful. I still am not that confident in my writing because, as my friends comment, my essays have nice ideas but have less expounding. Nevertheless, I will keep on browsing your blog and pick up gems. I will be taking my second IELTS exam soon and hopefully, by the 30th of September I will be more than ready and confident in taking the test. My previous score was 6.5 and I need to get a 7. Again, thank you very much!

  4. Hello liz, i just finished today my ielts academic test in dubai, I forgot to put my conclusion in part 2 essay, how many percent it will affect from my total scores?
    Question part 2: some people believe that having educational qualifications will have a great success in life. Others believe that educational qualification is not necessary for the success in life.
    Discuss both iew and give your opinion

  5. Dear Liz
    Hope you doing great!
    I tried writing the essay using help from your ideas. Could you please access it. It will be a great gesture 🙂 Thanks in advance.

    It is often thought by some people that funding of lessons such as arts, music and dance should be done by the government. However, there are others who think that these subjects should be paid by the parents or the private organisations. In my opinion, I believe, the government of the state should pay for the lessons of art, danceand music.
    On the one hand, there are people who think that music, dance and art lessons should be funded by the government. Take for an illustration, government can finance for classes which require expensive equipments such as harmoniums and pianos. In addition to this, the government has adequate financial resources to pay for the classes on a wider scale. For example, in may secondary schools, government make facilities for huge dance rooms, art galleries where students can leran these subjects in groups with training from the skilled teachers. This would help in learning the subjects with commitment, dedication and interest as children will realise how schools and government work together to make them learn the cultural subjects.
    On the other hand, other people think that subjects of art, dancr and music should be paid by the parents or the private organisations. For example, there woyld be certain group of children who are not interested in learning these subjects in groups. In this scenario, parents can let them join private classes and pay for hese classes where the classes would be more flexible and teachers csn guide them on one-to-onr basis.

    In conclusion, I believe, all facilities should be made available by the government of the state for art,dance and music as these are cultural subjects and heritage shoyld be preserved internationally.

  6. It is considered by many that funding for learning music, dance and other arts subjects for children is the responsibility of their parents. However others argue that governmental funding for the same is inevitable. In my opinion, although parents and private institutions can support children individually, governmental aid for furthering arts is indispensable.
    my introduction for this topic

  7. hi liz, thanks for the wonderful job that you are doing for us. could you check my introduction, please. And also I have some question.
    the essay topic is : Some people think that mothers should spend most of their time raising their children, and therefore the government should support them financially. Do you agree or disagree

    Many consider that mothers are good at household management, particularly child-rearing so that they should stay at home in order to take care of their children. And governments should provide them some financial assistance. I completely agree with this statement and I’ll extend my opinion throughout the essay.

    and then in second graph i wrote about why female is suitable for child caring and in third paragraph i wrote about the reason why government’s should help. Is it right?

  8. Dear Teacher!
    I have written another essay as well. Could you check it please. Thank you very much for your kind consideration!

    Some people think that parents should teach their children to be a good member of society. Others, however, believe that school is the best place to learn it.
    Discuss both views and give your opinion.

    It is argued by many people that parents should educate their offspring to be a responsible member of society, whereas school is considered by others to be the most suitable platform to teach the skills. In my opinion, although school provides academic and different knowledge, the responsibilities of parents outweigh all.

    Parents’ contribution to make their children honest, social and responsible citizens of society should be incomparable owing to various reasons. Firstly, they teach their offsprings regarding honesty, discipline, etiquettes and more as the first teachers which are indispensable qualities of good citizen. Secondly, social and religious norms and values are taught by parents at home because, all the activities performed by parents are imitated by children. For instance, if parents respect their elders and speak truth, their children learn the same, vice-versa. Finally, home is the place where children spend most of their time with their family members due to which parents can easily understand the psychology of them.

    The noticeable role of school in making children to be good members of society is that school harbors harmony and tolerance in them through multicultural and multilingual atmosphere. To illustrate, school is the platform where the students belonging to various castes, races, cultural and races come to get education. Moreover, academic knowledge, guidance of teachers and participation in extracurricular activities play precious roles to cultivate their mind and make them understand in respect of their responsibility towards society.

    To sum up, children are the pillars of a nation and it is the responsibility of all the people to take care of them. However, I believe that parents have irreparable accountability to nurture their children to education them to be valuable members of society.

    • Hi,

      It’s a good essay would probably get around 6.5. Here are just a couple of areas where this essay could be improved:

      1. The thesis statement – don’t make it complicated or confuse the issues. This essay is not about responsibility but about where children learn right and wrong. The most important thing in a thesis statement is to keep it clear in terms or grammar and vocabulary. Here is how you should have written it ” In my opinion, although school provides academic knowledge, children mainly learn right and wrong at home from their parents and family.
      2. Topic sentences. Write them carefully. This is about what other people think “Parents’ contribution to making their children honest, social and responsible citizens of society is incomparable according to some.”
      3. If you agree with one side, which you do, you need to repeat that in the body “Parents’ contribution to making their children honest, social and responsible citizens of society is incomparable according to some people, which I agree with.
      4. Be careful with vocabulary ” Firstly, they teach their offsprings regarding honesty, discipline, etiquettes and more as the first teachers which are indispensable qualities of good citizen.” I know you want to express that parents are essential a child’s first teacher but it is confusing for the reader. It’s not worth doing this. Keep your vocabulary and meaning clear “Firstly, they teach their offsprings regarding honesty, discipline, etiquette which are indispensable qualities of good citizen
      It’s a good essay. If you can improve your thesis statement to make it accurate in terms of meaning, vocabulary and grammar – that would help. Also make sure you repeat your opinion in the body. You can’t only put your opinion in the introduction and conclusion.
      All the best

  9. Thank you teacher for you kind consideration!
    I have again tried it. Please, give me feedback with possible score.
    Some people think that the government should fund music, dance and arts lessons for children. Others think that they should be funded by private business or by children’s family. Discuss both view and give your opinion.

    It is considered by many people that funding for music, dance and arts lessons for children is the responsibility of the government. However, others believe that private agencies or children’s family should pay for it. In my opinion, although parents or private institutions can be a part of it, the major responsibility to fund for these lessons is of the government.

    On the one hand, to initiate the classes of dance arts and music require a huge investment which is possible through government. Therefore, the government should fund for arts, dance and music because these represent the culture and rituals of a country which are indispensable assets. Moreover, to implement the subjects related to arts and music at the same time across the nation, a system is required which can be regulated by the government bodies only. For instance, merely running a class in a particular area these skills cannot be promoted nationally. So, the government should bear the responsibility to provide funding to run the classes and manage required materials such as musical instruments, halls and more.

    On the other hand, private organizations or children’s parents may fund as per their willingness, because the lessons and facilities provided in school many not be suitable for all the students. In that case, parents can provide separate or extra classes for their children. In other words, children in school coming from different socio economic back ground have distinct aptitude. So, for their convenient, private institutions can come forward to provide required funding.

    To summarized, although private organizations or parents have their own responsibility to promote the cultures and rituals, it is the government which possess the ability to fund for the sustainable development of music, dance and arts.

      ans could give some guide lines so that i can write an effective essay?

      • Hi

        Yes, I’ll comment on your other essay as well. I’m just a bit overloaded with work at present so please be patient 🙂

    • Hi,

      It’s better than last time and certainly 6.5 or borderline 7. The main problem now is that your opinion has not been explained. You have not agreed with one side. You have given a balanced approach which is families should contribute some funding but most should come from the government – this needs to be explained in detail in a third body paragraph.

      You have a choice, you can either agree with one side which means you make a note of that in one of the body paragraphs or you have a different opinion which you will need to explain in a third paragraph. But what you can’t do is write one line in the introduction and summarise it in the conclusion with no explanation in the body.
      All the best

  10. Hello!
    I have tried another essay. Please appraise it

    Some people think that the government should fund music, dance and arts lessons for children. Others think that they should be funded by private business or by children’s family. Discuss both view and give your opinion.

    It is considered by many people that funding for music, dance and arts lessons for children is the responsibility of the government. However, others believe that private agencies or children’s family should pay for it. In my opinion, the amount that is paid for these lessons (music, dance and arts) should be funded by both the government and private sectors.

    On the one hand, the cultures, languages and rituals are the indispensable assets of a country which recognize the country all over the world and it is possible only through music, dance and arts. So, it should be preserved and promoted by the government providing adequate funding for the arts and musical classes from the school levels. To illustrate, the musical instruments and infrastructures for dance, music and arts classes require a huge investment. Similarly, it is only the government that can implement the subjects in respect of these skills across the country compulsorily that will include the children from different strata. Therefore, the government bodies should be a part of it.

    On the other hand, it is believed that the sustainable development of arts, dance and music for children can be considerable when the private agencies and parents are ready to provide funds. For instance, the funding from the private or children’s family plays a milestone to excel the scope of these subjects from the local level. Furthermore, the classes of dance, music and arts can be provided to children according to their interest. So, there is higher possibility of qualitative outcome.

    To sum up, the funding for arts, music and dance is inevitable to preserve and promote the cultural heritage internationally. So, I think the government and private agencies or children’s family should actively be ready to pay simultaneously in the realm of art and music.

    • Hello!
      I am waiting for your response.
      could you check the essay?
      As per your instruction, i have written it.

      • Hi,

        I usually take between 1 and 4 days to do essay feedback. Hopefully I’ll be able to do it today or tomorrow.
        All the best

    • Hi,

      It’s a reasonable essay and could get 6 or 6.5. However, there are some issues which I want to highlight for you.

      1. Saying that both the government and families should pay is not a clear opinion. Do you mean they should pay equally? So, if the government pays 1 million dollars so should families? Or do you think the majority should be paid by the government and the rest by families? Your opinion is not clear and explained. This could affect your score.
      2. Be careful with main points: “On the one hand, the cultures, languages and rituals are the indispensable assets of a country which recognize the country all over the world and it is possible only through music, dance and arts lessons.“. This does not introduce the main point which is government funded lessons – culture is the supporting point. Here is how you should have written it : “On the one hand, some people think that the government should fund lessons in dance, music and art because it is part of a cultural heritage which needs to be protected.” You can also see I have written about what other people think.
      All the best

  11. Hani Shaker says:

    Thanks so much Liz. You are so honest to the depth . You are doing a marvelous job ,only God could compensate you .
    Hany Shaker .

  12. Hany El Masry says:

    Hi Liz ,
    I hope you are well . I thank you so much for great help . Herein , an essay response to the topic of funding music or art forms by governments . Please , score it . Your comments are intrinsic for me as well . Appreciate your kind help. Eagerly awaiting your reply .

    some argue that music and other art forms have become an intrinsic requisite for relieving tired and exhausted souls and even pains , apart from being a distinctive feature for culturally developed countries , and , therefore , claim that it should be funded by governments programs . Others contend that governments should not undertake the burden of funding such forms of art and should pose the bulk of their funds to the prerequisites of the peoples . Personally , I believe that funding such art programs depends on the economic welfare of governments otherwise it should be funded by persons or their families .
    Enthusiasts for funding art forms such as music and dance believe that the role of music and various art forms has gone far beyond being and optional choice and has become a compelling need . An example underpinning this argument is health reports that indicate positive role of music in healing and curing diseases , apart from helping the patients to maintain positive attitude and fortifying their immune system . As a result , persons exposed to a lot of music are much more resistant to diseases than others . Further and even more importantly , though , making such art forms available to all citizens has become a distinctive feature of developed countries . Being a compelling need , adherents to this trend believe that governments should be funded by governments to materialize equality among citizens .

    On the other hand , debunkers believe that aiding art forms such as music and dance will add a burden to governments ‘ funds . They think argue that it such money should be posed to the most compelling necessities as education , health care and infrastructure . For instance , developing countries governments could not even support the prerequisite requirements of their citizens rather than on music which is usually considered an optional in developing countries . Since all countries could not afford that , I believe that funding such issues should be left to persons according to their own financial status . Affluent families , for example , can pay for music tools or lessons for their children . Meanwhile , impoverished ones could find it stifling to afford these issues beside subsidizing their children’s sustenance .
    In conclusion , while some argue for funding different art forms by governments , others believe that it would have a detrimental impact on the governments budgets . Thereupon , I believe that it is persons own responsibility to pay for that if they think it is compelling for them or their sons .

    • Hi,

      Could you post the full essay question for me. It’s hard to comment without seeing it.

      • Ignore my last comment – I see you have posted this essay on the page relating to the essay question. I’ll get back to you with feedback either today or tomorrow.
        Sorry for that.

        • Hani Shaker says:

          ok Liz
          thanks for your tolerance and patience . believe me I am waiting your comments as if I am waiting for my beloved . take care.

        • Hi Liz ,
          How are you ? Hope you are well . Sorry for any inconvenience or nuisance . Please , kindly check that essay and score it please . I know , you are exerting miraculous efforts to help us . We all love you and truly appreciate your help .

    • Hani Shaker says:

      Hi Liz ,
      Hope you are well .Thank you very much for your beneficial comments . However , still ,there is a so confusing point for me ; in the topic question , I am asked to discuss both views , those who are in support of funding music by governments and those who are against that , and also to give my pinion . How can I then distinguish between opinion essay and argumentative one ? . Actually , I consider the essay to be opinion one if I am asked , ” To what extent you agree or disagree . ” . Also , I consider the essay argumentative one if I am asked to discuss both views . Still confusing it is for me and may be for many ILETS test takers . Could you kindly provide us with a clear cut clues through which we can determine whether the essay topic is opinion , argumentative , discussion or discursive essay . This point needs more elaboration and illumination for us, because once one could clearly decide on the nature or type of the essay , we can go through the essay easily and get high score . Otherwise , many marks could be lost for including irrelevant ideas. Hence , again , I wonder if you could help us in that . I am sure you will because you have never disappointed us .

      On the other hand , I will rewrite that essay and send it to you again to check . Again , I am sorry for any inconvenience and nuisance . Eagerly , waiting for your reply .
      Hani Shaker

      • Hi,

        Oh dear. This is what happens when I rush and over work. Yes, it’s a discussion essay. I will delete all my feedback and start again. So sorry. I’ll post you proper feedback later today without rushing and making mistakes. So, don’t write it again – just wait for my new feedback. I’m so glad you wrote back to me so I can correct this.

      • Hani Shaker says:

        Another issue ;
        which one of these two sentences is of a higher score in the ILETS ;
        It is still confusing for me .
        Still confusing it is for me .

        Thanks a gain .
        Hani shaker

    • Hi Hany,

      At last, your feedback.

      It’s a good essay but there are areas which could certainly be improved. I’ll go through them one by one.

      Firstly, cut down your introduction. It’s over 100 words and it would be better to aim for 50. Your first sentence is generally irrelevant to the essay and doesn’t provide a focused beginning to the essay.

      Secondly, you offer a really unique opinion in your introduction which doesn’t actually agree complete with either side. It’s a balanced approach opinion. It’s a great way to give an opinion. But this means that you can’t then agree with one side in your body paragraphs. Your opinion is that government should pay but if they can’t afford it, families should pay. The only way forward with this is to have three body paragraphs. One side, the other side and your opinion – each a separate paragraph.

      Another point to consider is that in your first body paragraph you explain why music or art lessons should be funded by the government. That’s the right aim but this essay is about children not about people in general or about patients. Why do you think the government should pay for children to have music or art lessons? The only way to avoid this mistake is to underline all the key words in your essay question and make sure you have the same information given in your topic sentences. For example, government, funding, music, art, lesson, children = “On the one hand, there are a number of reasons why some people think that children should have their art and music lessons paid by the government.”

      The second body paragraph is not about why people think the government shouldn’t pay. It’s about why people think families should pay. Make sure you are addressing the right sides and the right information in each paragraph.

      Lastly, check your conclusion. Make sure your opinion in the conclusion exactly matches your opinion in your thesis statement. In this essay it is not a match.

      I know you can write well. But IELTS is all about addressing the task very carefully, making sure you are addressing the right points.
      A good try and I’m sure you can do better.
      All the best

      • Hani Shaker says:

        Hi Liz ,
        Thanks so much for this elaborated ,enlightening comment .
        But if you were to give this essay a band score , what could it be ?
        Hani Shaker

        • Hi Hani,

          It would probably be 6.5 or borderline 7. The problems with task response will bring the score down which is a shame because your level of English is very good. All said, there are a couple of poor word choices which you could also change:

          Vocabulary: “exhausted souls” are inappropriate words for the topic. “pose the bulk” do you mean “allocate a major proportion”? Are you a doctor? That might be a reason for bring medical jargon into the essay but the words and ideas are oddly fitted to a topic about lessons for children. Otherwise, your vocabulary is very good – just a few odd choices of words.
          All the best

  13. Hello Liz,

    Thanks for the wonderful job that you are doing for all us!
    I have a question for you. It relates a little to the topic you brought today but I’m going to ask it anyways.
    So my question is this: should I use idioms for GT essay 2 (with 250 words)? I thought it shows my vocabulary but my teacher says that it’s not something I’m supposed to use 🙁 Can you please help me with this?

    • Hi,

      I think you have a good teacher. Many idioms are informal so that means they shouldn’t be used in academic writing. Other idioms are over used. This means that students all over the world are learning the same idioms to put in their essay to get a high score – the examiners have seen them hundreds of times. So, that won’t help you get a high score.

      Can you or can’t you use idioms in writing task 2? Yes, you can use them if you are sure they are academic, if you have not learned them from a list online to get a higher score and if they exactly suit the context and are used grammatically correctly. That’s not easy. Most idioms would be inappropriate.

      My advice is not to waste your time with idioms for academic writing. Focus on topic vocabulary, learn how to use that vocabulary well (this means don’t just learn the meaning but learn how to use the words) and avoid making errors. Errors will reduce your score.

      If there is an idiom you really want to use, post it in a paragraph of academic writing and I’ll let you know if it’s ok.
      I hope that helps you understand – let me know if you are still worried.

      • Hi Liz,

        It’s Alex again (concerning idioms) 🙂
        Well, I like to start my sentences with “in this day and age”. Besides I like to use “a great deal of” 🙂 Can I actually use those?

        • Hi,

          “In this day and age” is fine to use if you are comparing the past with the present. If you are only using it in a normal essay (not comparing past and present), then I don’t recommend it. I have read so many essays that use it and the examiner will have read many more times. It’s a common idiom that students love using and it won’t help your band score at all.

          Regarding “a great deal of”, it’s fine to use it if you are using it to refer to “many”, for example “there is a great deal of concern about …”. It’s just another way to say “a lot of”.
          All the best

  14. can u please tell me about paraphrasing…what should be paraphrased or what should not?

    • Hi,

      You should paraphrase words that can successfully be paraphrased with the same meaning, in the right situation and that are appropriate. The word “children” can’t be paraphrased – young people is not the same / teenagers are only between 13 and 19 so that’s no good / infants are under 5 years old / kids is not academic. So, you see that word can’t be paraphrased.

      This is a language test and part of the test is assessing how well you can paraphrase – that means knowing when you can and can’t paraphrase successfully. There’s no real list to learn.
      All the best

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