Ms. Curlin Observation

Ms. Curlin did a fantastic job with her elementary music class. She kept order in the class without having to do terribly much. The kids really seemed to enjoy themselves. They took in every bit of information. It was great.

Ms. Curlin started with a welcoming song. It got the students’ attention and was musical. She lead them in warm-ups with solfege. She announced the star student, and then she told the class the objectives for that day.

After the introduction to the lesson, she taught them how to sing The Lucky Little Shamrock. This was my favorite activity. The students had fun singing and dancing.

The next thing they did was to learn the rhythm of Pease Porridge. She taught them the rhythm so that they could then play it on the orf instruments. They were really excited to play them. They were even able to create a melody for the song.

Ms. Curlin ended by asking if they had covered the objectives, which they had, and giving them a reward for good behavior. She did a great job. She used the Smart Board to help teach. All the children could see it, and she used it to play background music. She also used the piano a little. She is an amazing elementary music teacher.


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Mrs. Bell Observation

Mrs. Bell was amazing at teaching her elementary students. She did a wonderful job teaching her fourth graders how to play recorder. She had a good system to let them read the music and play along with some simple background music. If they were having trouble, she would diagnose the problem and help them fix it. She was good at controlling bad behavior. Anytime a student misbehaved or didn’t sit right, she took care of it quickly and efficiently. She also had a younger class play instrument bingo. She asked for their feed back on what they thought they heard then told them what it was. Overall, Mrs. Bell is a very good elementary music teacher.

This is Mrs. Bell’s shelf for instruments.


This teacher decided to have a Charley Brown Christmas theme for her door and board.


IMG_20160126_103621073 1.jpg


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ArkMEA Fall InService 2015


This is Andrew Kreckmann, who was the speaker during the PROgramming: Creating an Inspirational Concert Program session. It was very enlightening, especially for someone who plans on be a choral director. He talked about ways make a themed program without being boring. He talked about how a main theme reoccurring in several pieces could tie them together. He talked about how there does not have to be applause between every song. That time can be filled with instrumentalist, soloists, percussion, piano, organ, drones, hand bells, and numerous other things. He also mentioned that there are songs that the audience may want to applaud for, and the conductor should be aware of this. Several times he compared the conductor to an architect. I thought this was a really good comparison because the conductor has to create a program that looks good and will keep people interested.


Awakening Your Classroom Through Fame Play was lead by speaker Sheri Cook- Cunningham, featured above. This was a fun session to participate in. She had us do several activities that would be good to bring energy to the classroom. She was more focused on a choir setting, but I think a lot of these activities would work in other music settings as well. She had us sing Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes, and when we went to sing it a second time, she took out one of the body parts. That would progress until the kids were only doing the motions. We sang part of The Lion Sleeps Tonight. Most kids have heard that, so it’s familiar. We played some games like Simon Says, Pass the Ball, and other fun things. There are a lot of ways to keep the students energy up even during rehearsal. This was a very enlightening experience.


Left to right in the picture above is Victor Wooten, J.D. Blair, and Rod C. Taylor. They were phenomenal. They talked to us about how they teach music with a different approach. Instead of calling musicians beginners and trying to teach them what they do not know, they come from the standpoint that we are all experts at music and teach them from what they do know. They talked about how we are taught to mainly use seven notes even though there are twelve notes at our disposal. They compared it to the alphabet and said it would be like only using eighteen of the twenty-six letters in our alphabet. They taught someone how to play bass by having her play only one note and feeling the beat. They called instruments tools in which a musician can use to help make music, but the music itself comes from the person. They talked about how stress can affect our playing. This was one of my favorite parts because they used Dr. Barber during this part. They used actual objects to represent all the things weighing on her mind, and she could not play that way. It was very enlightening.

I am really glad I got to go to this conference. I had a great time and learned a lot of good things.

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Song For Recorder

Aiyana – This is the song I wrote for recorder only using the notes C, B, A, and G.

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Happy Halloween

Halloween picture

Rhythm: Say Halloween using different rhythms.

Sing: Halloween, hearing the ghost all scream. Yes it is Halloween. Boo! Tune to the beginning of The Sorcerer’s Apprentice.

Listen: The Planets: MarsThe Sorcerer’s Apprentice

Instruments: Play scary sounds on instruments.

Create: Make up a new Halloween story to go along with the music of The Sorcerer’s Apprentice.

Movement: Act out the story to the music.


Halloween Mosaic  Witch picture

Coloring: Coloring Pages

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Rethinking Music Education

Taylor, R. (2015, September). Rethinking music education in the 21st century. Segue, 28-30.

Rod Taylor’s article, Rethinking Music Education in the 21st Century (September, 2015), asserts that music education should take into interest the needs and experience of each individual student.

  • Teachers do not always know what is best and can use bad teaching methods, so think for yourself.
  • There are no beginners in music.
  • Students should participate in their own instruction.
  • Music education should include playing with practice.
  • Students should learn how to listen.
  • Music is emotion.
  • Be a leader in education.

“As multiple neurological studies have shown, most people begin their appreciation of music while still in the womb. After we are born, our lives are filled with the sounds of music in numerous environments, from home to school to work. Thanks to technological advances over the years, music is a ubiquitous part of our culture. When people decide to pursue music education, though, as teachers we often tend to think of them as “beginners,” and we do worse when we treat them as such. Rather, we should point out that they are quite experienced in music; they’re just beginning to express it in a way or on a particular instrument that may be new to them.” Pg. 29

“The ability to listen to others is perhaps the most defining characteristic among successful musicians. As such, it should be both modeled and privileged in teaching by instructors of music. We often teach ear training to our students, which focuses on their ability to hear a certain pitch and understand its relationship to another pitch, but what about teaching students how to listen well to what others in the band are playing?” Pg. 30

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BoomWhacker Lesson


Neener Puddin’ by Michelle Einert

Oh, I love neener puddin’. It is my favorite treat.

And if you see me runnin’, I’ve got puddin’ to eat.

Neener Puddin' notes for BoomWhackers

Chords for NP

Neener Puddin' Chords



  1. Sing song and teach it to them if they do not already know it.
  2. Discuss notes used for melody and some of the more difficult rhythms.
  3. Hand out BoomWhackers ABCDEG and play melody one time through.
  4. Discuss the chords that can be played with the melody and the notes that are in those chords. G has G, B, and D. C has C, E, and G. D7 has D, F#, A, and C. You can play your note in any of the chords it fits in. Now you play chords while I sing the melody.
  5. Now I want you to sing and play chords.
  6. Using the same melody, I want us to come up with a new verse.

Sing a simple melody with a harder rhythmic pattern. P.5.3.1

Improvise new words for a melody. CR.1.3.1

Just for fun, here is our cat, Skittles.


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