Music Ed Mentor Podcast #046: Modern Band and More

Music Ed Mentor Podcast #045: Modern Band and More

Today’s podcast is a bit of a continuation of our last episode, where Steve Holley and I talked about incorporating pop music into our ensembles and classrooms. Be sure to check it out if you haven’t already.

If you’ve attended a conference anywhere in the United States recently you’ve probably seen a session being hosted by Little Kids Rock. I have to admit that, even though I teach little kids, initially I wasn’t all that interested in trying to turn my classes into 25-piece rock bands.

Then one day my Facebook feed blew up. About 100 of my friends were attending the Modern Band Summit in Ft. Collins, Colorado. I was seeing all these videos and photos and testimonials and I was like, “What on earth am I missing?” I’ve invited today’s guest, Scott Burstein, to help answer that question. He is the director of teaching and education at Little Kids Rock and the director of this year’s National Modern Band Honor Ensemble at the National Association for Music Education Conference in Florida.

Ever since I started to get to know the Little Kids Rock-trained teachers and their underlying philosophies, I have started to transform my own teaching. It really is about the students. It really is about engaging students by meeting them on their level. I really did switch the repertoire that we took to festival. Get ready for an exciting paradigm shift!

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Key Takeaways

  • Pop music is the folk music of today.
  • Learning music is like acquiring a second language and can be taught in a similar way.

Free Bonus Episode: Teaching Music as a Second Language

What Scott has to say about teaching music as a second language is very profound. So much so that it took more time than we had in this episode. But because I felt it’s so very important for you to know and understand, something that can really change your effectiveness as a teacher, I was able to persuade Scott to make a little BONUS episode where we just talk about music as a second language. This isn’t something you can just look up on YouTube or find anywhere else. It only available here, for free, to readers of the SmartMusic blog.

Enter your email below to listen to – or download – the bonus episode.

Additional Resources

Elisa Janson Jones

Elisa Janson Jones specializes in helping music educators build, grow, and manage thriving school music programs. With an MBA alongside her degree in music, she is also a coach and consultant to small businesses and nonprofits around the country, and serves as the conductor of her local community band. She has been teaching music for nearly 20 years and currently holds the prestigious position of elementary music teacher at a private K-8 Catholic School in Grand Junction, Colorado. Elisa was a top presenter at the NAfME National Conference in 2017 and will be presenting at state conferences in 2018. She is the founder of the International Music Education Summit and the author of The Music Educator’s Guide to Thrive.

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