Today’s featured content is Frank Ticheli’s Portrait of a Clown. This Grade 2 piece masterfully portrays the varied emotions of the clown. Because it doesn’t rely heavily on low brass and low woodwinds, it’s often a great choice for young band programs that have not yet fully developed those sections.
Technology in the classroom is more than just a fad. It has the potential to transform the way teachers do their jobs and helps students learn effectively in their “native” environment. In yesterday’s post, Katie Wardrobe shared seven ways you can “level up” your use of music technology, whether you’re a beginner just getting started with classroom technology or a veteran who’s been using tech tools for years.
UPDATE 10/20/17: Today we updated this post to include the latest details about SmartMusic and High Sierra. Feel free to skip this post if you’re using SmartMusic on Windows or a previous Mac operating system.
On Monday, September 25, 2017, Apple released High Sierra, the latest Macintosh operating system.
Helping each student develop a sense of relative pitch can dramatically improve your ensemble’s intonation. One common technique to help instrumentalists internalize relative pitch is to have them sing. Incorporating singing into your rehearsal is a great technique, but students shouldn’t lose sight of the final learning goal: to improve their intonation.
Teachers work hard to make sure that beginning instrumentalists develop a strong sense of internal pulse. Framing this learning objective for students in your lesson plan can help make sure that they understand the goal. Better yet, framing can help you check for student understanding and lead to a more efficient rehearsal.
September is here and the school year is up and running!
To help, we’ve added 19 new ensemble titles to the SmartMusic Repertoire Library. Included are pieces for choir, concert band, jazz ensemble, string orchestra, and full orchestra.
View the complete list.
We invite you to explore the full SmartMusic Repertoire Library and/or request additional titles you’d like us to add.
Student practice is at its most effective when students are able to assess it themselves. Helping students to become active, engaged participants in their own assessment creates empowered learners – and develops ear training skills to boot. Self-assessment can also create independent learners who are eager for new challenges on their instruments.
Students who practice wrong notes and rhythms at home bring those mistakes to class. Often you will spend more time getting them to unlearn those wrong notes than if you’d just spent the time spoon-feeding them the right notes in the first place.
Teaching students how to practice means teaching them to assess their own playing.
Fostering a cooperative learning environment while also addressing state standards and preparing concert repertoire can be a difficult task. Using a rehearsal for sectionals can accomplish all three goals while also improving your students’ ability to assess their own playing.
We’ve built a free lesson plan you can use to guide student-led sectionals.
Cooperative learning is “a practice that empowers students to interact with one another to realize a common goal.” In his blog post yesterday, Anand Sukumaran explained that this definition seems to automatically apply to a music ensemble. After all, performing well at the concert is a common goal, and musicians in an ensemble certainly interact.