James Mick on the Importance of Delivery in Rehearsal

James Mick on the Importance of Delivery in Rehearsal

James Mick is an associate professor of music education at Ithaca College in upstate New York. In February I heard Dr. Mick give an inspiring TMEA workshop on getting the most out of your orchestra rehearsals. His presentation was extremely informative and offered many really practical suggestions for improvement. We spoke more recently about just one aspect of his presentation, focusing on the importance of how a director delivers information.

Maximizing the School Counselor’s Impact

Maximizing the School Counselor’s Impact

The secretary. The custodian. The counselor. These people in your building play an often behind-the-scenes, yet vitally important, role in your program’s success. Of these three, however, the counselor is often the most underutilized. It was not until I became a school counselor (after 10 years of teaching band) that I realized the many ways counselors affected my band program and wished I had known then what I know now.

Band-master or Band-mentor?

Band-master or Band-mentor?

A few years ago I was a composer-in-residence at a university. While there I worked with many of the students, as well as with outlying teachers. One teacher was at the beginning of her second year of teaching. Her undergraduate degree had included creative music-making pedagogy, and according to staff at the university, she was a star student.

What If Students Programmed Your Next Concert?

What If Students Programmed Your Next Concert?

Imagine a conversation like this in your classroom:

Director: Today I propose to do something for you that none of your other teachers will ever do. I’m prepared to let you decide what we will work on in this class.

Students: [Most showing interest, except for some percussionists who appear to be digging a tunnel.]

Director: Specifically, I will let you choose what we will perform on the next concert.

Traveling with School Music Groups

Traveling with School Music Groups

Traveling with school music groups has a multitude of benefits – both musical and non-musical. Many times the nonmusical benefits far outweigh the musical benefits. To take advantage of these travel benefits, begin by asking the basic “W” questions – Where, When, What, and with Whom? As you decide what type of assistance you will need to answer these questions, be sure to take advantage of resources available to you within your school community; you may not need an outside trip planner or company.

Music Ed Mentor Podcast #020: Parent Booster Groups

Music Ed Mentor Podcast #020: Parent Booster Groups

I’m a huge fan of parent booster groups. They can really help promote your program, make fundraising easier, and engage your community. Joining me to talk about booster groups this week is Ryan Crabtree, president-elect of the Colorado Bandmasters Association. More importantly, however, Ryan is my daughter’s band director. Since I’m an active member of Ryan’s parent booster organization, you’ll also get some behind-the-scenes glimpses at how and why Ryan’s approach works so well.

The Director’s Guide to Recruitment + Instrument Selection

The Director's Guide to Recruitment and Instrument Selection

As a band or orchestra director, few tasks are more important than recruiting new students. To help ensure the longevity of your music program, we’ve compiled recruitment and instrument selection advice from top educators across the country.

Whether you’ve experienced just a few instrument fitting days, or dozens, these tips that can help your next event be more successful with less effort.

Improve Your Large Ensemble with Chamber Ensembles

Improve Your Large Ensemble with Chamber Ensembles

Imagine a perfect world. Imagine a world where your students bring greatly improved attitude, sound, rhythm, confidence, and listening skills to your rehearsal. Sounds great, right?

It is our experience that having students play in chamber ensembles regularly will give you stronger results for your entire program even though it may mean less large ensemble rehearsal time.