Like many other teachers, I have been exposed to learning management systems (LMSs) through professional development, online courses and even some face-to-face coursework. Early LMSs were a neat new technology and they certainly piqued our interest, but they were also fairly clunky and difficult to use in the early stages. A new LMS called MusicFirst is about to change that!
When I began teaching in 1982, everything from lesson planning to grading was done by hand with paper and pencil. I was part of the transitional generation of teachers that started when classroom technology consisted of overhead projectors, records, cassettes, and mimeograph machines, and then moved to the plethora of digital devices and services that are now available to fulfill all of those needs and more.
One of the staples for any general music classroom, regardless of level, is instruments: barred instruments, recorders, rhythm instruments, percussion instruments, piano or electronic keyboards, and of course, everyone’s favorite, the autoharp (yes, I know I am seriously dating myself!)
School is back in session, and as teachers we all know that means stocking up on hand sanitizer, disinfectant wipes and tissues, and scheduling the annual flu shot. While these are all very important, there are several other areas that all teachers – but in particular music teachers – need to be concerned about: our voices and our hearing.
Whether a music teacher uses the Orff approach or not, almost all have had some interaction with the wonderful instruments that are associated with Orff-Schulwerk – and now these beautiful-sounding instruments are available from J.W. Pepper!
What started as a single day of music advocacy by the New York State School Music Association (NYSSMA) back in March of 1973 has grown into a month of celebration and advocacy for music in our schools. Our tireless efforts to promote the importance of music education has been joined by the other arts, and March is now recognized by the U.S. Department of Education as “Arts in Our Schools Month.”
Your concert is coming up; you and your students have been working on the selected repertoire for a while now—things are coming along nicely and the time for the performance is close at hand.
You have decided on the trip, made all the preparations, and your students and parent groups have been hard at work raising the funds to ensure that every student can participate. Now it is time to choose the repertoire that you will be presenting.
The influx of technology into our lives and into our classrooms has had a profound influence on the way many music educators approach the way they teach and sometimes what they teach.