Teacher Tip: An Activity Tracker for Vocalists

Mary-Hannah Klontz, choral teacher at Swanson Middle School in Arlington, VA, and doctoral candidate at George Mason University, shares why she uses SmartMusic and Finale in her teaching.

Today’s technology trend is “wearables;” digital devices that are worn like jewelry or glasses. An example is the FitBit® which provides instant feedback about daily activity such as steps taken, active minutes spent, calories burned and quality of sleep.

Feature Friday: SmartMusic and the Holidays

SmartMusic and the Holidays

Holidays can be a very enjoyable time with all the festivities with family and friends. These occasions are the perfect time for you to encourage your students to perform for enjoyment and fun instead of just getting ready for another concert at school. It gives the students the chance to share with others what they have been learning and the skills they have developed.

Teacher Tip: Student Learner Outcomes


The below post comes to you from Richard Tengowski, Director of Bands for the Kohler School District in Wisconsin. Richard shares how he uses SmartMusic to achieve Student Learner Outcomes (SLOs). He teaches elementary, middle and high school concert bands, jazz ensemble, pep band, drum-line and secondary general music.

Teacher Tip: Using Technology in Rehearsals

Chris Grifa, band director at Creekside Middle School (Carmel, IN), shares how he uses technology in rehearsals.

Technology is integrated into the classroom everyday and is an integral part of the students’ daily classroom experience. When planning a rehearsal, I think about what objectives I want to accomplish and how technology can be used to enhance those objectives.

Teacher Tip: Creating a Holiday CD for Parents

Teacher Jim Schulz shares how he creates a CD using SmartMusic.

Creating a Holiday CD for parents using SmartMusic is a project I have used in some variation over many years. I am currently doing this project with my 6th grade string players.  If you don’t wish to create a holiday CD, you could use this template for other projects such as a portfolio of your students’ progress.

Teacher Tip: Implement Deliberate Practice

Kevin Mead, band director at Churchville-Chili High School in New York, shares how he is using SmartMusic to guide his students’ practice.

Our challenge: “Pineapple Poll”

The Churchville-Chili Wind Ensemble is currently working on the first movement of “Pineapple Poll”. I wanted to encourage and reward the students’ use of a “deliberate practice” approach for learning this challenging piece of music.

SmartMusic Gets Spooky


Certain times of the year hold appeal for students and it is always nice to find music that is fun and motivational for them to play but also has educational value. SmartMusic has thousands of pieces of repertoire. One collection that you and your students might find appealing, especially this time of year, is called Spooky Solos.

Teacher Tip: Students Select Concert Music

Ted Scalzo SMARTBoard

Music educators across the United States are using SmartMusic to engage their students in class and motivate them to practice at home. Here is Ted Scalzo’s (Bayshore H.S., Long Island, retired) story of how he asked his Wind Ensemble students to use SmartMusic to choose their concert music.

Feature Friday: How to Demonstrate SmartMusic to Parents

FeatureFriday_BlogHeader_Editable 2As a teacher, you know the importance of communicating with the parents of your students. Sharing with them your class goals, grading policies, and expectations helps everyone feel more comfortable and can alleviate possible misunderstandings throughout the year.

Teachers often ask how they can get more students to use SmartMusic for home practice.