How To Be A Better Music Teacher Part 3

So in my last two posts, we’ve discussed some ideas for becoming a better music teacher. In the first, we talked about focus and rejuvenation. And last time, we talked about structure. Today, we’ll talk about evaluating the structure and quality of a curriculum. Remember, we defined the curriculum as your plan of teaching. These…

How to Encourage Focus in Yourself and Your Students

How To Be A Better Music Teacher, (Part 1 of 3) “Focus!  Focus!  Focus!” Have you ever heard that?  Perhaps from a teacher?   Maybe you’ve said it yourself. Maybe you’ve even said it this week. We music teachers are all about focus.  It takes focus to teach, to practice, and to play an instrument.  We…

How To Use A Focus Window to Combat Overwhelm in Students

In the jungle that is music education, there lives a beast.   A terrifying dragon that lurks behind every chair, instrument and music stand, it is the Distraction Dragon.  This beast is the greatest and most common enemy of all teachers.   We tremble upon sensing the slightest breath of distraction rising up among our…

How to get concepts to stick for music students

What cognitive disfluency teaches us? I’ve been thinking about this for a while. We are drowning in information these days. There’s so much information that our eyes glaze over. The boards of education of every school district in America are touting the importance of having information about student attendance, test scores, reading ability, curriculum, assignments, and…

How To Know If Your Child’s Music Lessons Are Backwards?

The Joy of Music One of the best parts of my job as a music teacher is witnessing the pure joy that music can bring.  Here’s one of my young students who started her first lesson with me at the end of June.  We had a few lessons over the summer and then a break. …

Music Education And The Belief of “Control of Destiny”

As a parent, I have always wanted my son to have a music education.  It’s not that I want him to be a professional musician, it’s because It’s so much fun and he loves it the life skills accessible through music lessons Brain Development and Music Education There have been so many scientific studies and…

How To Teach Music in The New Attention Economy

The Information Economy? People sometimes say that we are living in the “information economy.”  I think that is only partially true.  Instead, I believe we are living in the attention economy.  Think about it.  There is nothing more precious than our attention — not time, money, or material possessions –and everyone wants a piece of…

What Miss Shelly Discovered In A Nightmare Piano Lesson

Shelly took a deep breath.   Her lesson wasn’t going the way she thought it would.  A fun and simple song had turned into a struggle of multiple problems- technique, rhythm and simply playing the right sequence of notes.  She had to catch herself as she was becoming visibly flustered.   “Did I do something…