Pacing and Energy are Not The Same

Engaging students in classroom activities and keeping their interest throughout the lesson are both necessities and difficult. While many elements contribute to motivating students to stay on task and be productive in class, two important ones are pacing and energy. Pacing is the rate or speed at which you teach. Pacing that is too fast … Continue reading Pacing and Energy are Not The Same

Creative Flexibility Can Save The Day

As we enter another holiday season, I'm sure many of you who teach have already noticed the children getting a bit excited. Often, managing classroom behavior becomes more difficult as holiday anticipation and excitement builds. For this reason, it is good at this time of year to consider strategies that will help us stay on … Continue reading Creative Flexibility Can Save The Day

Time Is Precious, How We Use It Even More So

One of the challenges of being an Arts Educator is the relatively limited time we have with our students. Whereas Math or L.A. teachers see their students every day, music teachers often see a class once or twice a week. Teaching a year's curriculum within these curtailed contact hours can be daunting. A common response … Continue reading Time Is Precious, How We Use It Even More So

Where We Are With Progressive Education

I don't usually republish articles by other authors, in fact I don't believe I ever have on this blog. But this article is so "right on" and about such an important topic that I simply must share it with you here. I believe it will resonate with every public school teacher.       FIRST … Continue reading Where We Are With Progressive Education

Use Student Talking in Class to Your Advantage

I'm not sure when I realized it, but I am certain that this is true: I will never entirely stop my middle school students from talking in class. It is like telling an ice cube to stop melting while it is in an empty glass on a picnic table on a warm summer day. Instead … Continue reading Use Student Talking in Class to Your Advantage

Using Student Feedback to Plan Music Instruction

When it comes to teaching, I'm a pretty old school kind of guy. Many teachers, and I count myself among them, tend to teach the way we were taught, especially if we were generally successful in school. For me and I would guess most others of my generation, we accepted what the teacher told us … Continue reading Using Student Feedback to Plan Music Instruction

Lesson Planning and Marzano’s Nine Strategies

Context is everything. There's a saying, "a little knowledge is a dangerous thing." Too often in education, we take a little morsel of knowledge, perhaps acquired at a conference or hastily gleaned from an article or book, and then force it into  a position of exclusivity and prominence that assures success will not prevail. I … Continue reading Lesson Planning and Marzano’s Nine Strategies

Three Ingredients for Good Classroom Management

For whatever reason, I have noticed over the years that art and music teachers seem to get more than their fair share of misbehavior in their classes. I suppose the children regard these classes as a time to let down and blow off steam after sitting immobile in a classroom writing, reading and generally keeping … Continue reading Three Ingredients for Good Classroom Management