Don't forget to visit my request for my classroom at DonorsChoose.org: Keyboards For Kids, Music For All Give to my classroom by June 28, 2015 and your donation will be doubled thanks to DonorsChoose.org. Just enter the code SPARK on the payment page and you’ll be matched dollar for dollar (up to $100). The longer I … Continue reading Making Music Classrooms More Student-Centered
When you teach a child to play an instrument, what is the goal of doing so? This may seem like an odd question, because we are inclined to answer that the goal is to lead the child in gaining proficiency on the instrument. There is nothing wrong with this goal; it can be defined, growth … Continue reading How It All Works Together
When an entire class is singing or playing musical instruments, having everyone actively participating is a given. There is no waiting to be called on and no hoping not to get called on. Music ensembles involve everyone all the time. Every student is either singing, playing, or tracking measures of rest so they will make … Continue reading A Strategy For Improving Student Engagement
By now, most music teachers are familiar with and using some form of assessment in their classrooms. Directors of performing ensembles give periodic playing or singings tests and quizzes, and may also administer written tasks to assess knowledge of music reading and analysis. General music teachers have become accustomed to collecting written student work, and … Continue reading Assessment Ideas for the Music Classroom
Recently, I observed that music reading has received minimal attention in the new NCCAS music standards. To be sure, music reading is not necessary for every musical experience. From a global perspective, our Western music notation is not used at all in many places, especially where music culture is preserved within an oral tradition. In … Continue reading How Much Music Reading Instruction is Enough?
Although most music educators have solid training in vocal and instrumental techniques, expertise in teaching music composition is less common. There are, I suspect, fewer music teachers who are composers than instrumental or vocal specialists. Even so, music composition is an important part of musicianship, the development of which is at the heart of music curricula … Continue reading On Teaching Music Composition in General Music Classes