‘peak state’ music education

December 7, 2011

This article describes a new trend in being ‘peak state’ to increase enjoyment and retention!


10 Excellent ways to use an Interactive Whiteboard in the Music Classroom

March 13, 2011
10 Excellent Ways To Use An Interactive Whiteboard in the Music Classroom

So you’ve been given an interactive whiteboard (IWB) to use and you know you should be using as more than a simple projector or place to screen videos.  The benefits of incorporating an IWB into your teaching are many: it allows you to create a bank of learning resources that can be used many times across multiple classes, you can replace some of your physical resources with digital versions so you don’t lose them.

Luckily, you don’t need to rewrite your curriculum.  By learning a few IWB basics, you’ll find that many of your current class activities can be adapted for use on an IWB.

Here are 10 ideas to get you started.


10 ways to motivate upper primary music

May 25, 2013

This PDF has 10 suggested approaches to pedagogy re. engaging 10-12 year olds in the music classroom – from FunMusicCo.


12 bar blues – beginner keyboard chords

February 11, 2013

Today I told Year 8 that teenagers today learn ‘heaps’ from YouTube … I handed out keyboards … and pressed ‘play’ on THIS YouTube clip. All I had to do was wander around the class admiring their progress, and making a few corrections. :-)


15 Oct FREE info session / PD @ Melbourne Con (Vic)

September 26, 2011



You are invited to a special public seminar led by Professor Gary McPherson, Director, Melbourne Conservatorium of Music.

Presenting evidence-based approaches to music performance teaching, this presentation is a preview of the exciting new Master of Music (Performance Teaching) program.

Music educators, undergraduate music students, and those wishing to teach instrumental music in the future are encouraged to come and experience some of the innovative teaching that will feature in this course, as well as find out essential information and ask questions.

Refreshments will be served after the presentation.

TIME & DATE: Saturday 15 October 2.30pm

VENUE: Melba Hall Melbourne Conservatorium of Music The University of Melbourne Gate 12, Royal Parade Parkville

COST: FREE – bookings are essential

BOOKINGS: Anastasia Russell-Head or 03 8344 3673

COURSE INFORMATION: au/grad/mmusperfteach


17 Nov 2012: Big Kodaly Day

September 3, 2012

Message from Kodaly Assoc:

Big Kodaly Day – 17 November

Cripps Centre, Caulfield Grammar School, Caulfield Campus, 217 Glen Eira Road, East St Kilda,

After the fantastically inspiring inaugural ‘Big Kodaly Day’ last year, we are very excited that Dr James Cuskelly is able to share more of his expertise with us. James will lead us in the developmental process useful for teaching older beginners. His ability to enthuse and bring about effective learning in students across all ages and abilities is now firmly internationally recognised. His content is sequential and his processes and presentation of ideas are succinct… in a word, brilliant! Plus musicianship & more…

  • This is a one day music seminar aimed at teaching older beginners; middle/upper primary – lower secondary.
  • Learn how to develop a sequential music program which develops musicianship and understanding.
  • Learn powerful questioning techniques and ways to differentiate the curriculum.

Bookings using


18 March 2013 Singing Classroom PL Vic

March 6, 2013

The next exciting event in the aMuse 2013 PL calendar is a full-day “The Singing Classroom” workshop.

A PL designed to encourage primary teachers to sing more regularly with their classes. The workshops aim to build teacher confidence, provide a range of resources and to model skills in teaching songs.

If you’re interested, please come along.

If you know someone who would be interested, please pass this info on.

Monday, March 18

10.00am – 3.00pm

Statewide Resource Centre

150 Palmerston Street, Carlton

$100 per person

$40 for tertiary students

Lunch and morning tea provided


1st year music teachers

March 4, 2013

New music teachers are encouraged sign up to The Music Teacher Project online forum at

This is a new online community especially for first-year music teachers. Share stories about your music teaching experiences – positive, negative and everything in between. It is a dynamic and exciting place, where you can explore who you are as a teacher, ask questions and support one another through this first crucial year.


24 March 2012 – Musical Futures info session @ Sydney Con

February 26, 2012

Sydney Con @ 9am, 24th March 2012

Cost $80

For more info:


25 May 2013 – regional PD day for music – Orange NSW

May 15, 2013

ASME NSW in conjunction with MusicEDU and ENGADINE MUSIC are bringing PD on the road for an informative and fun filled day of PD in Term 2, 2013 (25 May).

Cost $10-$45


10.30- 4.30pm

This PD will involve presenters from Sydney including ASME NSW Chair Brad Merrick, who will provide an update on ACARA, The Australian Curriculum as well as presenting a session on approaches to teaching performance in the HSC. Following the opening lecture, a series of smaller workshops will be provided for rotation for the delegates and their interest.
A selection of other experienced Sydney teachers will be coming out for the day and will share their expertise with you. The aim will be to provide PD for both classroom and studio teachers. Some of the areas that will be touched upon include: -

• Emerging trends with technology in class including keyboards, computers and apps

• Approaches to developing vocal skills, instrumental skills and repertoire selection

• Teaching activities and resources for the Primary and Lower Secondary Classroom

• Strategies for teaching aural, composition, performance in electives and the HSC


ABC Keys to Music podcasts

February 15, 2011

ABC Keys to Music – listen to a 4-part series of audio podcasts from May 2009. Richard Gill and Graham Abbott discuss the importance of quality school Music Education for all Australian children.

(Scroll down the webpage to the heading “Music Education Series”)


active music making – call for papers

September 29, 2011

As a new initiative, nine new Special Interest Groups (SIGS) have been set up to operate at the forthcoming International Society of Music Education (ISME) world conference Thessaloniki, Greece July 15-20th 2102.

One of these is the Active Music Making (AMM) SIG which is focused on studying, promoting, and advancing music pedagogies that facilitate students actively making music.

The aims of the AMM SIG are to demonstrate, promote, and advance well-established music pedagogies based on active music-making (e.g. Orff, Dalcroze, Kodály, Gordon and others). Activities will include dedicated workshops, papers, posters and symposia. Please email for more info.

We invite you to submit a proposal in one or more of these categories – workshops, papers, posters and/or symposia as part of the Active Music Making SIG. Submissions for each individual presenter are limited to a maximum TOTAL of four, with a limit of two submissions in any of these categories. The deadline for submissions is midnight (your time) October 1st, 2011.


1. Log into the system at – you need to be a current financial ISME member to apply

2. Click on Submit or Edit Saved Proposal

3. Click on Submit Proposal for World Conference

4. The only other choice is Commissions – SIGs are part of the World Conference

5. Submit Proposal for World Conference  (including SIGs and Vocal & Instrumental Forum)

6. Click on which type of submission

7. You get to the Submission page.  In the Topics/Area menu, click on the name of the SIG – Active Music Making!

We are looking forward to having you as part of our very first Active Music Making SIG.


An Integrated Expressive Arts Program: drama, dance, art, music

December 20, 2009

Go to resource: An Integrated Expressive Arts Program: drama, dance, art, music was written by Wendy Schiller and Ann Veale. Published by the Australian Early Childhood Association, 1989.

Read more…


An Introduction to Music in Early Childhood Education

February 3, 2010

Go to resource: An Introduction to Music in Early Childhood Education by Joanne Greata is published by Thomson Delmar Learning, New York, 2006. Read more…


Are apps saving Classical music?

August 30, 2013

Read the article here:

It makes reference to Touch Press iPad apps such as: Beethoven’s 9th, The Orchestra, and a Liszt Sonata (piano) app.


ASME National Framework for Music Teaching Standards 2005

October 9, 2011

Under the following headings: Professional Knowledge, Professional Practice, Professional Values, Professional Relationhips


Assignment – reflect on how music preferences effect your identity

July 3, 2011

A free lesson plan from Nick Jaworski designed for Year 9-12 students reflecting on MUSIC & IDENTITY. It involves using Audacity (or other music editing software) to create a 3 minute audio project. This project may suit Challenge-Based-Learning principals.


Aus Inst for Teaching & School Leadership – supporting curricular change

August 16, 2011

There is an opportunity to be involved in a Programme being undertaken by  AITSL.   The Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership (AITSL) has responsibility for establishing professional learning flagship programs that support national education priority areas. The Professional Learning Flagship Program: Leading Curriculum Change will aim to enhance teachers knowledge, skills and confidence to plan for, support and lead curriculum change, including school level implementation of the Australian Curriculum. Classroom teachers with curriculum change leadership responsibility in a school are the primary audience for this flagship program.

AITSL have a number of resources available on their dedicated Leading Curriculum Change web page

Please also note that this website is the place that all interested individuals go to register an expression of interest in The Professional Learning Flagship Program: Leading Curriculum Change.

Should you have an interest in leading such curriculum change, follow the link above and consider applying to be partof the programme.


Australian National Council of Orff Schulwerk Inc (ANCOS)

January 24, 2010

Go to resource: The Australian National Council of Orff Schulwerk Inc (ANCOS) is the Australian organisation for Schulwerk music education methodology, and is linked to the Orff Institute in Salzburg. Read more…


Autumn PL Orff 2012 (Melb)

May 7, 2012

Autumn Music Seminar – Friday 18 & Saturday 19 May 2012

This years seminar will enrich your music programme by providing access to excellent practitioners and innovative resources adapted for Australian

classrooms. Presenting this year we are fortunate to have an international expert from Hungary, Lilla Gabor, and from interstate, Celia Christmass
(WA) and Anne Comiskey (Qld), plus many more!

Highlights include:
•  NEW Orff Stream of workshops

•  Songs, games and teaching strategies
•  Daily sessions to develop your aural skills
•  Choice of electives
•  Practical sessions focussed on excellence in teaching and deliveredby working educators
•  Opportunity to network with other teachers
•  Gain insight into strategies for developing students listening, music  literacy and aural skills.

Each day will run from 9am – 5pm at St Alfred’s Anglican Church, Corner Springfield Rd and Koonung Rd, Blackburn North.

Program details are on the
Kodaly website at

Bookings using


being a music teacher in the age of social media

April 3, 2013

Elissa Milne blogs her ideas on the changing shape of music teaching


Big Question blog

April 7, 2013

After watching the Mitra TED talk together (, and discussing the future of learning for today’s teenagers, 12-13 year olds in a Music class were asked to get into groups, devise their own “Big Question” to do with music, and come up with a researched presentation. Grouping was flexible, and open to change. Each group had to appoint a ‘granny’ for encouragement. Presentation format was up to each group.

Questions included:

“Who first invented music?”

“How do people respond to different genres of music?”

“How do disabled people experience music?”

“How has music changed over the last 100 years?”

“How is music education different across the globe?”

After half an hour, any student who was without a group (and therefore without a big question) was teacher-guided to collect photos of unusual instruments to present to the class.

Only a few students took the ‘unusual instrument’ approach. Two students found a superficial answer to their question in 5 minutes and settled on it. The rest worked collaboratively and enthusiastically – even those students who avoid practical music making, which was pleasing!

4 lessons were given for the task – 3 of which were in a computer lab. The level of working noise was greater than normal, but very productive. Most students were on task for the vast majority of the time. Excitement was evident in most students. Collaborative work was predominant, with all students voicing their opinions at various times. Weaker students often found themselves working with stronger peers. Groups changed a little throughout the 4 sessions, finding a better balance. Questions of the teacher were few and far between, having encouraged students to seek answers from their group.

Presentations were predominantly in PowerPoint, with students taking turns to read from the screen. This Project-Based Learning (PBL) or SOLE (Student-Oriented Learning Environment) task formed one of six assessment tasks for the year, under the title of “Self Nominated Project”.

The teacher found the sessions lively and entertaining, having the rare chance to sit back and observe active learning as an interested spectator. From a teaching point of view, the SOLE experiment was fun, energising, painless, and surprisingly easy – students did as much thinking as the teacher, which is my new goal for classroom teaching!


Build a school in the cloud

March 9, 2013

Watch this TED talk on YouTube with Middle School students. Then ask them to self-organise into groups (with internet access) and pursue their own choice of ‘big question’ to do with music.


Challenge-Based Learning

July 20, 2011

One recent trend in education is “Challenge-Based Learning” (CBL) … real-life, relevant, project-based learning (often using Apple software). Read more …


Charanga – digital learning community

January 25, 2012

Charanga is a digital learning community for music education – once paid up and subscribed, you have access to digital lesson materials and support.


Children, meaning-making and the arts

February 3, 2010

Go to resource: Children, meaning-making and the arts, edited by Susan Wright, is published by Pearson Education, Frenchs Forest NSW, 2003. Read more…


Classical music apps for all ages (Article)

September 6, 2013


Comparing Dalcroze, Orff and Kodaly: choosing your approach to teaching music

January 24, 2010

Go to resource: Comparing Dalcroze, Orff and Kodaly: choosing your approach to teaching music by Gilles Comeau and published by CFORP, Vanier – Ontario, 1995, is translated from the 1995 thesis by Comeau. Read more…


Composing Together (publication)

April 1, 2013

“Minds on Music” – This textbook enhances preservice and practicing music educators’ understanding of ways to successfully engage children in music composition. It offers both a rationale for the presence of composition in the music education program and a thorough review of what we know of children’s compositional practices to date. Minds On Music offers a solid foundation for planning and implementing composition lessons with students in grades PreK-12.


contemp music suggestions for class bands (Musical Futures)

January 21, 2012

THIS NING is an online meeting place for teachers to suggest repertoire for class bands (Year 3-10): Pick a few songs, and ask groups of student to learn them by ear or using the internet. Give them 6 weeks and see what happens!


Course: Music to enhance children’s experience and development

January 22, 2012

HERE is a link to an Open University course on using music to aid children in multiple ways.


Creating Meaning Through Literature and the Arts

December 21, 2009

Go to resource: Creating Meaning Through Literature and the Arts by Claudia Cornett (2006) is a textbook specifically for classroom teachers. Read more…


Critical thinking ideas for the Music classroom

October 13, 2012

THIS article has practical suggestions for promoting Critical Thinking skills in the music (and instrumental teaching) classroom – both primary and secondary.


Dalcroze Australia

January 23, 2010

Go to resource: Dalcroze Australia is the official Dalcroze association in Australia and offers courses for teachers. Read more…


Dalcroze Eurhythmics – Music Through Movement : Early Childhood Education Lessons and Ideas for Teachers in Music

January 24, 2010

Go to resource: Dalcroze Eurhythmics – Music Through Movement : Early Childhood Education Lessons and Ideas for Teachers in Music by Heather Gell and edited by Joan Pope, is published by the Heather Gell Dalcroze Foundation, Callaway International Resource Centre for Music Education, Nedlands WA, 2006. Read more…


Dalcroze Eurhythmics in Today’s Music Classroom

January 24, 2010

Go to resource: Dalcroze Eurhythmics in Today’s Music Classroom by Virginia Hoge Mead, is published by Schott Music Corporation, New York, c1994. Read more…


Dalcroze Today: an education through and into music

January 24, 2010

Go to resource: Dalcroze Today: an education through and into music by Marie-Laure Bachmann is published by Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1991. Read more…


Dr Scott Watson – free podcasts

July 23, 2011

Dr Scott Watson (US) shares his experiences as a music educator and conductor via a series of free podcasts.


Easy planning for the rest of the year

December 2, 2012

Show students the MusicCareer website with its list of ‘careers in music’. Students should choose a career which interests them, and spend the rest of the year undertaking career-related activities, eg. practising (= performer), writing a list of equipment they think school should buy, listening to songs and writing what emotion it evokes (= music therapy), changing songs to words … ENJOY!!!


Education in the Arts: Teaching and Learning in the Contemporary Curriculum

February 3, 2010

Go to resource: Education in the Arts: Teaching and Learning in the Contemporary Curriculum, edited by Christine Sinclair, Neryl Jeanneret and John O’Toole, is published by Oxford University Press, Melbourne, 2009. Read more…


ESSENTIAL READING for Music: Count Us In 2012

October 10, 2012

TIME: This year’s performance time is Thursday 1st November, at 12.30pm AEDT (It will be 9.30am in the West).

WEBSTREAM: There will be just ONE live webstream this year, from outside Parliament House. John Foreman and Peter Garrett will be there, with 1800 school students from the ACT and other special guests. We will start the broadcast 30 minutes before the 12.30pm Big Sing. Just hook an internet-access computer up to a data projector or white screen, go to and follow the instructions on the home page. If you’re still not sure about what to do, check the FAQs here.


For all teachers who have signed up (free) for MCUI 2012, there is now access to Music Pods – FREE short video segments to help you teach the song :-)  View a sample HERE.


Finger Composing – young children at the piano

January 31, 2012

A cute blog post which reminds us to allow young children be creative on their own terms.


Flame Awards announced 2011

July 22, 2011

FLAME AWARDS: This year’s theme is: ‘creative and engaging ways of delivering music education’. Entries are open to Primary and Secondary schools across Australia in 2011.

Visit the Flame Awards website for entry information

Due 22nd August, 2011.


FLAME Awards finalists 2011

September 19, 2011

2011 Flame Awards have announced 23 finalist schools. This year’s finalists use technology and social networking to engage students, teach ukulele during class music lessons, promote song-writing to reinforce literacy, employ music therapists to work with special needs students, and timetable music lessons for every day of the school year.

More details of schools and attributes will soon be here.


Free access to Klerrisa Music resources Oct 2012

October 7, 2012

This month (October 2012) Klerrisa Music’s ACCESS site (usually available to paying customers) is FREE to all teachers. Browse through brilliant resources (Middle School to High School) and sample tastes of many different units, lesson plans and worksheets.


free beginner keyboard tutor

December 29, 2012 This website features FREE songs in a logical sequence for learning to play keyboard AND read music at the SAME time. I use it with Year 7 students, but it suits younger and older students as well! Songs with GREEN dots are free — blue dots require payment. Many songs have accompaniments as well.


free djembe lesson video

January 4, 2013

Once you sign in (free), you will receive a link (via email) to watch 3 free video lessons on basic djembe technique.


free Jellybeans teaching demo (Melb and Syd)

October 15, 2012
A message from Jozzbeat:


Here’s your opportunity for Melbourne and Sydney metropolitan Primary schools to test drive the classroom music program “Jellybeans Music” in your OWN school! For a limited time during Term 4, we will send out one of our Jellybeans Music teachers to your school for a Jellybeans lesson with a class of your choice.

If you’ve not seen Jellybeans Music in action before, take this opportunity to see the program that many schools, Principals and parents are talking about.

For more information on the program go to:

Call the office – 1300 307 506 or

email us HERE to book in.


free lesson content re. new curriculum

March 19, 2013

Each of the Arts has a number of units designed to complement the National Curriculum. Scroll to the bottom and choose “Music”!


Free pop music teaching kits

October 19, 2011

Click here to download FREE teaching kits for teaching pop music to Middle School students – using the Musical Futures approach. Handouts include song lyrics, keyboard chord fingerings & guitar chord fingerings.

Thanks to Coombeshead Academy for sharing their resources freely :-)


free primary generalist Music lesson ideas

September 2, 2013

Zoë Barry, Song Room Teaching Artist, has supplied the following ideas from ARTS:LIVE eNews:

• Bring in a your favourite piece of yours and discuss why you like the piece

• Set the scene – make sure the students are comfortable and ready to listen. Direct their listening – what instruments are playing, when do they come in and out?

• Play air instruments along to the piece – students will get a kinaesthetic sense of the piece – it will seem silly at first but do it with real conviction and they will get into it!

• Get students to conduct along to the piece – moving their arms in time, and responding to changes in speed (tempo) and volume (dynamics)

• If it is a song, who do they think is singing it? Why are they singing it? Analyse the lyrics – literacy! – rhythm, repetition, rhyme, analogy, metaphor etc…Rich pickings!

• Explain why you like the piece. Do you have memories associated with it? What era is it from? Does it remind them of other music they have heard? What is the social context of the piece?

• Discussion can develop in many directions, including curriculum themes, creative writing, researching composers and performers, historical eras, students’ cultural backgrounds, celebrations etc.

Teachers get free registration to ARTS:LIVE music teaching resources when they sign in with their school email address.


free workshop at your school (Vic)

September 3, 2012

We would like to invite you to host a FREE Music Count Us In/The Singing Classroom workshop at your school during September or October.

Here’s a final reminder of the opportunity to have a workshop in your school.

Bookings are filling fast – we already have more than last year!

Please send an expression of interest asap if you are interested.

The workshops will be 1.5 half hours long, run after school and open to all of your staff as well as other teachers in your area. Each participant will receive a resource booklet packed with useful songs, action songs, games and composition ideas, which includes this year’s MCUI song – and a CD!

This year’s workshops will be delivered by Susie Davies-Splitter and Sue Arney.

Below is a list of dates that we are available to come to your school/venue to run a workshop. All dates are open – we have indicated dates which would be best for us to come to country areas, however everything is negotiable and we are happy to discuss options.

Please let me know asap if you would like to book one of the dates below to host a workshop in your school.

Warm regards,

Sue Arney

Project Officer

Association of Music Educators


Tuesday 11

Wednesday 12

Thursday 13

Friday 14

Tuesday 18

Wednesday 19 (country)

Thursday 20 (country)

Friday 21


Monday 8 (country)

Tuesday, 9

Wednesday 10

Thursday 11

Friday 12

Tuesday 16

Wednesday 17

Thursday 18

Friday 19

Monday 22 (country)

Tuesday 23

Thursday 25

Friday 26


games to inspire instrumental practice

April 17, 2012

This website offers some free games for inspiring multiple repetitions when learning new pieces. Other parts of the webpage offer advice re. practising an instrument at home.

HERE is a free e-book re. how to practice.

The author has also written a book (for purchase).


Gareth Malone = choral master / boy educator (YouTube)

January 20, 2012

This amazing TV series (on YouTube) shows how a choir master tackles “raising education standards” for UK boys in Year 5-6.


Global Conservatory – distance education from NY

September 13, 2011

Manhattan School of Music has instituted a groundbreaking distance learning program — the first of its kind at a major conservatory — devoted to exploring the use of state-of-the-art videoconference technology for music education and performance.

Use the internet to take 50 minute classes with your students, or to undertake professional learning for yourself / your community.


Hands On Music Outcomes

February 4, 2010

Go to resource: Hands on Music Outcomes: a practical teachers guide to implementing the curriculum framework curriculum guides & progress maps joyfully in the classroom, by Sue Noonan, is published by Rossendale Press, Exmouth WA, 2005. This volume is intended for primary teachers and comes with an accompanying disc. It contains music activities and guides for assessment.


Heather Gell’s Thoughts on Dalcroze Eurhythmics & Music Through Movement

January 24, 2010

Go to resource: Heather Gell’s Thoughts on Dalcroze Eurhythmics & Music Through Movement is edited by Joan Pope and published by CIRCME, University of Western Australia in association with the Heather Gell Dalcroze Foundation, Nedlands, WA, c1996. Read more…


hints from a Music Therapist on conserving your voice while teaching

March 8, 2011

helpful article – Music teaching ideas for when you are ill or weak-of-voice


History of Music Education in Australia

February 3, 2010

Go to resource: The History of Music Education in Australia by Robin Stevens is published on the Deakin University website and provides an outline of the development of music education from colonial settlement through to now. Read more…


Hungarian Dance movement & listening lesson video

June 16, 2013 This is one of the best YouTube teaching clips I’ve ever seen. Play it to your primary class, copy the actions, then create your own movement ideas to Hungarian Dance.


Improvisation and Conducting

February 19, 2010

Go to resource: Improvisation and Conducting from a Dalcroze Workshop in Thailand 2008, run by Sandra Nash, demonstrates Dalcroze music and movement activities for music students of different stages. Read more…


interactive classroom music blog

October 9, 2011

This blog, set up by Jozzbeat to discuss the Ramp-Up project, shows what Australian teachers can achieve by sharing their musical questions / comments / videos via an online community.


iPad apps for musicians

October 6, 2012

Many of the iPad apps mentioned in THIS list would suit classroom Music teaching for all ages.


Issues in expressive arts curriculum for early childhood: an Australian perspective

December 20, 2009

Go to resource: Issues in expressive arts curriculum for early childhood: an Australian perspective. Published in 1996, guest editor Wendy Schiller. Read more…


JellyBeans are HERE

September 12, 2012

A Jozzbeat percussion chart has appeared using the Music: Count Us In 2012 song.

It’s an online, animated chart (JellyBeans-style) for classes to play percussion with. Great for learning rhythm reading and concepts of arrangement. ENJOY!!

How do you get FREE access? Sign in to Music: Count Us In … then email asking for the JellyBeans chart access. ENJOY!!!


JMRO – Journal of Music Research Online

April 8, 2011

an MCA publication -

Journal of Music Research Online this refereed journal includes music education research


Karaoke Culture – TED video

June 17, 2011

How does one find authentic creativity? In his last talk before passing away, Malcolm McLaren tells remarkable stories from his own life, from failing school to managing the Sex Pistols. He argues that we’re living in a karaoke culture, with false promises of instant success, and that messiness and failure are the key to true learning.



Katie Noonan: high tech teaching over the net

December 6, 2012

Katie Noonan and Musica Viva are using video-conferencing and Google + to connect music students across geographical boundaries.


Keeping Primary students engaged in Music

June 19, 2011

An entertaining article by a Primary Music teacher who entertains her students with bubbles, colourful hats and knock-knock jokes … in the interests of keeping students on task.


Kids transformed by Music (TED video)

July 10, 2012
This TED video (10 mins) describes 30 years of Jose Abreu working with El Sistema and at-risk kids.

Kodaly teacher survey

March 14, 2012

Recently the Kodaly Committee discussed 2 issues and would like your input and feedback.

1.      The need for mentors for new teachers and teachers who are new to Kodaly.

2.      The committee would like to have better information about what Kodaly programs are offered in schools.

We would be most grateful if you can take a few minutes to fill in the survey and to also pass on to your colleagues. Go to the following link for the


Many Thanks

Glenys Gijsbers (for the Kodaly Vic committee)


Kodaly workshop @ NECOM 20-21 October 2012

March 19, 2012

The Armidale Chapter of the Kodaly Music Education Institute of Australia in association with NECOM will be holding another exciting workshop at Old Teachers College on the weekend of October 20-21 this year.  Two wonderful teachers, Judith Johnson and Tim Sherlock are the presenters this year. Judith Johnson is the author of many texts used by music teachers throughout Australia. She has 30 year’s experience using Kodaly ‘s method in schools and recently retired from the School of Music at the University of Queensland where she also taught aural musicianship and classroom methodology to teachers in training. Her vast experience and delightful personality will make this a very special learning experience. Teachers attending the weekend will receive 10 hours of accredited PD and Judith will take a  special stream concentrating on early childhood methodology – a wonderful introduction for those new to Kodaly methods.

Tim Sherlock is a renowned choral conductor, composer and teacher in Brisbane. He regularly teaches at the January Kodaly Summer schools. His interest is in composing and arranging for choral ensembles and his works are in great demand by children’s, youth and adult choirs. There will be a choral reading session during the weekend of some of Tim’s music. He will also give a special workshop on composition for Year 11 students preparing for the HSC.

Enquiries can be directed to Inge Southcott via email:


Leading Notes – free podcasts and lectures on Music Education

August 20, 2011


Free podcasts and online presentations re. connecting with students while teaching Music.

Philosophy and pedagogy discussed.


learn ukulele online

April 15, 2013


lessonlogs for instrumental music teachers (currently free)

September 5, 2012

An online system for planning instrument and small group lessons, and supporting student practice at home. Currently free, while in the beta phase.

Includes room for students to record (online) their daily practice and questions.


life after MCUI – what now?

November 9, 2012

Is your school still buzzing after last week’s HUGE music-making session? Now is the time to apply for musical professional learning funding for 2013. Learn the guitar or ukulele. Join a community choir. Enrol in an Orff or Kodaly course (Primary classroom music pedagogy). Enquire about Musical Futures (Middle School). Subscribe to online resources through Jozzbeat or Musica Viva. Register for ECCPA (Early Childhood Music). Investigate MEP (Canberra). Book the Singing Classroom (Vic). Browse the More Music Toolkit … or email for some more ideas.


Little Book of Music for the Classroom

January 14, 2013

Article: “Music and the Mind” by Nina Jackson:

“The Little Book of Music for the Classroom” (also by Nina Jackson, pub. Crown House) is a comprehensive resource encouraging generalist classroom teachers to use music to assist learning and memory. Various lists of instrumental music are matched to activities – enhancing fact memorisation, creating a relaxed classroom, motivation to learn, problem solving, etc.

80-120 beats per minutes is often the best choice, as is avoiding lyrics. Find out more:


looking for trial schools (primary)

September 26, 2011

Looking for trial Primary schools (Australia) to test-run a new Primary Music delivery system on Interactive Whiteboards – complete with lesson plans, audio clips, video instructions and music charts. Suits generalist classroom teachers with little or no music knowledge.

Please email me if you’re interested:


Middle School: practical music-making with digital assistance

May 20, 2011

SoundHouse is an Australian resource-writer, student workshop and Professional Development provider, specialising in multi-media.

The above link will give you more information about on-line resources to help teach classroom guitar, percussion/drum, keyboard and practical theory ($199 per year) or email


MMADD about the Arts

February 3, 2010

Go to resource: MMADD about the Arts: an introduction to primary arts education, by Deirdre Russell-Bowie, is published by Pearson Education Australia, Frenchs Forest NSW, 2nd edition 2009. Read more…


Mus Ed literature review

June 10, 2013

A Brief Survey of Research into the Benefits of Music in Education

Mandy Stefanakis and Assoc Prof Robin Stevens, of the MCA’s working group for a National Strategy for Research in Music Education, have conducted a national and international survey of research in music education to identify research projects demonstrating a broad range of benefits of music education. The references below are to research outcomes supported by research methodology assessed as producing highly reliable results.

Where research reports are available online, links have been given. Otherwise, readers can seek them through the list of references at the end of this report.

Aesthetic development

Music provides the opportunity for aesthetic experiences. An aesthetic knowledge can be described as a deep perceptual understanding in which the senses, the emotions and cognition are combined to make meaning through the experiences of creating, making and interpreting aesthetic forms. (See Australian Curriculum: The Arts, 2013; Seidel et al )

Personal, Social, Cultural Expression and Identity Formation

Music through performance and creative experiences  provides a means for personal expression, communication and personal, social and cultural identity formation (See McPherson and Welch, 2012;  Damasio, 2012; Bowman; Australian Curriculum: The Arts; Seidel et al; Dissanayake; Bresler; Storr; 1992; Green, 2011; Hargreaves et al, 2012; Gupta; Campbell et al 2008; McPherson et. al, 2012; Stefanakis)

Music provides an opportunity to experience and differentiate emotional responses (see Juslin and Sloboda, 2001; Hodges; Storr, 1992; Seidel et al)

Music contributes to students’ personal well-being through developing self-image, self-confidence, self-esteem, etc. (see Deasy; National Association for Music Education, President’s Committee on the Arts and in the Humanities; Seidel et al.)

Brain Function

With the introduction of more precise techniques to scan different areas of the brain, there has been a massive interest and increase in the amount of neurological research into brain function when engaged in a whole range of musical activities from passive listening to performing on individual instruments. Research specifically shows that both older and newer areas of the brain inclusive of sensory-motor, emotions, cognition, fine motor, equilibrium, aural centres, and both hemispheres of the brain are used to varying degrees and in different ways when engaged in musical activity with dependence on a range of factors. These include gender, age and experience of the musician, the task being undertaken, for example aural, performance, conducting, individual task, group task, and even the kind of music or sound used in a study. Additionally there are variations among individuals.

Importantly, evidence demonstrates that there is a more pervasive effect on the development of the brain (brain plasticity) when a child starts learning an instrument than learning that takes place as an adolescent or adult, but there is still plasticity in the adult brain. Sustained, structured practice with delineated outcomes enhances this plasticity. (Of note is the work of Levitin, 2012; Damasio, 2012; Evans et al, 2009; Hodges, 1996; Hodges and Gruhn, 2012; Juslin and Sloboda, 2001; Merrett and Wilson, 2012; Peretz and Zatorre, 2003; Asbury and Rich, Winner and Hetland)

Music contributes to students’ cognitive development including abstract thinking, aural and spatial awareness, verbal understanding (see above)

Music contributes to students’ kinetic / motor skill development (see above)


Music contributes to students’ creativity when engaged with composing, arranging, improvising tasks which call upon the individual or group to imagine, plan, organise, experiment with and develop sound in an abstract way (see Barrett and Tafuri, 2012; Harwood and Marsh, 2012; Seidel et al; Arts Ed Search, President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities).

Learning Outcomes across Disciplines

It is still not fully understood why, but music enhances learning in a range of non-musical domains. Current thinking centres around the fact that music stimulates so many different brain regions, or that it motivates learning through the brain chemical ‘rewards’ (such as dopamine hits), the joy that music provides, (McCarthy) or that the social connections and self-esteem it establishes in students has a carry-over effect. Although the reasons are not fully understood there is a great deal of evidence to show that there is a correlation between music learning and enhanced abilities in a range of areas:

·         Music contributes to students’ rational thinking—reasoning, critical thinking, logistical thinking and interpretive skills (see McGarity, 1986)

·         Music contributes to learning in other knowledge and skill areas such as numeracy, literacy (see Bahr, 1996; Geoghegan, 1993)

·         Music contributes to students’ concentration, memory, time management. A plethora of short-term and longitudinal studies, particularly in the US, demonstrate these effects as a result of Arts Education and the suggested sources list many of these studies (see Burnaford, Arts Ed Search, Fiske, Deasy, Nafme for the above).

Social Cohesion and Skills

Music connects people through sound, so that there is a sense of physical and emotional camaraderie and shared experience. It is what is most unique about the musical experience (see Todd, 2002; Brown, 2000; McNeill, 1995). This ‘shared sound’ leads to a greater sense of communication with others, team cooperation and enhances social confidence (see Welch and McPherson, 2012).

Music contributes to students’ social skills—communication with others, social confidence, team cooperation, leadership potential, etc. (see Stevenson and Deasy, McCarthy).

Music has therapeutic applications in relation to mental, physical and social disabilities (Stevenson and Deasy, Gupta, Catterall et al., Schlaug, McDonald, 1999; Stacey, 1983; Weidenbach, 1981).

Music provides a vocational outcome for some students (McPherson and Welch, 2012).


Barrett, M. S. and Tafuri, J. (2012) ‘Creative Meaning-Making in Infants’ amd Young Children’s Musical Cultures’ in McPherson, G. and Welch, G. (Eds.) (2012) The Oxford Handbook of Music Education Volume 1. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

Bahr, N. (1996). Relationships between Musicianship and Mathematical Skill. MEd thesis, University of Queensland, Queensland.

Brown, S. (2000) ‘The “Musilanguage” Model of Music’, in N. L. Wallin, B. Merker, and S. Brown (Eds.) The Origins of Music (pp. 271-300). Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Campbell, P. Connell, C., and Beegle, A. (2008) ‘Adolescents Expressed Meanings of Music in and Out of School,’ in Journal of Research in Music Education. Fall 2007, Volume 55, Number 3, pp.220 – 236.

Damasio, A. (2012) Self Comes to Mind: Constructing the Conscious Brain. New York:  Vintage.

Evans, A. C., Forgeard, M., Hyde, K. L., Lerch, J., Norton, A., Schlaug, G. and Winner, E. (2009) ‘Effects of Musical Training on Structural Brain Development: A Longitudinal Study,’ in The Neurosciences and Music III: Disorders and Plasticity: Annual New.York Academy of Sciences. 1169: 182–186.

Geoghegan, N. (1993). Possible Effects of Early Childhood Music on Mathematical Achievement. MA thesis, Macquarie University, New South Wales.

Green, L. (Ed.) (2011) Learning, Teaching and Musical Identity: Voices Across Cultures. Bloomington: Indiana University Press.

Hargreaves, D. J., MacDonald, R. and Miell, D. (2012) ‘Musical Identities Mediate Musical Development,’ in McPherson, G. and Welch, G. (Eds.) (2012) The Oxford Handbook of Music Education Volume 1. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

Harwood, E. and Marsh, K. (2012) ‘Children’s Ways of Learning Inside and Outside the Classroom,’ in McPherson, G. and Welch, G. (Eds.) (2012) The Oxford Handbook of Music Education Volume 1. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

Hodges, D. (1996) ‘Human Musicality,’ in Hodges, D. (Ed.) Handbook of Music Psychology. San Antonio: Institute for Music Research.

Hodges, D. and Gruhn, W. (2012) ‘Implications of Neurosciences and Brain Research for Music Teaching and Learning,’ in McPherson, G. and Welch, G. (Eds.) (2012) The Oxford Handbook of Music Education Volume 1. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

Juslin, P. and Sloboda, J. (Eds.) (2001) Music and Emotion. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Levitin, D. J. (2012) ‘What Does it Mean to be Musical?’ in Neuron 73, February 23, pp. 663 – 637.

McDonald, L. M. M. (1999) The Response to Classroom Music Experiences of Students who have Learning Difficulties and/or Behaviour Problems. MEd research paper, Deakin University, Victoria.

McGarity, B.M. (1986) Relationships among Cognitive Processing Styles, Musical Ability and Language Ability. MEd thesis, University of New England, New South Wales.

McNeill, W. (1995) Keeping Together in Time: Dance and Drill in Human History.

Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press.

McPherson, G. E., Davidson, J. W., & Faulkner, R. (2012) Music in Our Lives: Rethinking Musical Ability, Development and Identity. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

McPherson, G. E., and Welch, G. (Eds.) (2012) The Oxford Handbook of Music Education Volumes 1 and 11. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

Merrett, D. and Wilson, S. (2012) ‘Musicianship and the Brain,’ in Brown, A. (Ed.) Sound Musicianship: Understanding the Crafts of Music. Newcastle Upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.

Peretz, I. and Zatorre, R. J. (Eds.) (2003) The Cognitive Neuroscience of Music. New York: Oxford University Press.

Stacey, B.J. (1983) Music Education and the Hearing-Impaired Child:  An Experimental Program. MMus thesis, University of Queensland, Queensland.

Storr, A. (1992) Music and the Mind. New York: Free Press.

Todd, N., Lee, C. and O’Boyle, D. (2002) ‘A Sensorimotor Theory of Temporal Tracking and Beat Induction’. Psychological Research, Volume 66, Number 1 / February pp: 26 – 39.

Weidenbach, V.G. (1981) Music in the Education of the Young, Multiply Handicapped Deaf / Blind Children. MA thesis, Macquarie University, New South Wales.

Welch, G. F. & McPherson, G. E. (2012) ‘Introduction and Commentary: Music Education and the Role of Music in People’s Lives,’ in McPherson, G. and Welch, G. (Eds.) (2012) The Oxford Handbook of Music Education Volume 1. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.


Music Education in Primary Schools

December 20, 2009

Go to resource: Music Education in Primary Schools, written by Graeme Askew, published by Education Australia (1993), this resource is for students and teachers, and incorporates Kodaly and Orff methods. Read more…


Music in Action

February 10, 2010

Go to resource: Music in Action is a magazine published by the Australian Music Association. Read more…


Music in childhood: from preschool through the elementary grades

December 21, 2009

Go to resource: Music in childhood: from preschool through the elementary grades, written by Patricia Shehan Campbell and Carol Scott-Kassner. Read more…


Music in Education by Dr Bob Smith

February 4, 2010

Go to resource: Music in Education is a website established by Dr Bob Smith, a retired teacher and author of Creative Musical Experiences. Read more…


Music in Primary Schools

February 3, 2010

Go to resource: Music in Primary Schools, by Alan True and Wendy Fullerton, is published by Journey, WA, 2008. Read more…


music lesson warm-ups from Musical Futures

January 9, 2012

HERE is an array of warm-ups which suit middle school aged students – great for ice-breaking the start of a music lesson.


Music Skill learning sequence

July 26, 2013

Edwin Gordon has compiled a list of musical skills, and a desirable order in which to teach them.


Music Skills for Classroom Teachers

February 9, 2010

Go to resource: Music Skills for Classroom Teachers, by Robert Winslow, Shelley Wiest and Leon Dallin, is published by McGraw Hill, Boston, 2001. Read more…


Music Technology inservices available

November 4, 2011
Trainer Katie Wardrobe runs fun and friendly hands-on sessions at your school or network meeting, using your computers or iPads.  Bookings are open for 2012 and there are also some limited opportunities for the remainder of this year.
Katie offers a supportive learning environment for teachers of all skill levels. Sessions are fun and easy-going!
Katie’s hands-on music technology workshops are ideal for you if…
  • You’re frustrated or overwhelmed by technology
  • You’re not sure where to start
  • You’ve had a brand new, unopened software program on your shelf for more than a few months (!)
Adaptable Music Technology Projects
Learn step-by-step processes to implement a range of projects that can be adapted to almost any year level, using whichever software program/s you have at your school:
  • Film scoring
  • iPads: Perform, Create, Learn
  • Remixing
  • Podcasting
  • Teaching Composition with Notation
  • Digital Story-Telling
  • The 12 Bar Blues Project
Music Software How-To
  • Sibelius Beginner, Sibelius Advanced and Using Sibelius With Students
  • iPads, iPhones and iPod Touches
  • Interactive Whiteboards
  • Acid Music
  • Mixcraft
  • Audacity
  • MuseScore
  • and more…
Full course descriptions available:

Music, movement and the young child

January 24, 2010

Go to resource: Music, movement and the young child, by Heather Gell, is published by Australasian Publishing Company, Sydney, 1973 (New Revised Edition). Read more…


Music: Count Us In Teacher Professional Learning

September 10, 2013
Music: Count Us In Teacher Professional Learning

On Wednesday 7 August, a professional learning workshop/webinar for teachers participating in the Music: Count Us In program was delivered at The Arts Unit in Lewisham. Presented by Ian Jefferson and Chantelle Duffield, the workshop demonstrated various warm-up techniques, how to teach Keep On, ways of getting students to really enjoy singing as well as a guest performance from the NSW Public Schools Junior Singers. The workshop was also streamed live using Adobe Connect.

To view a recording of the workshop, please click here.


Musica Viva’s digital resource

November 1, 2012

THIS article can also be read in the Music Forum Magazine.

Read article HERE.


Musical Futures

May 3, 2011 Musical Futures is a fairly new approach to teaching instrumental music to Middle School students.  This website gives you pedagogy ideas, background info, repertoire suggestions (including lyrics and tab), marking criteria, powerpoint presentations to show students about the process of rehearsing, etc. The basic idea is to create class “rock bands” and encourage students to teach / assist each other with a common goal – making contemporary music.

Here are some examples of the free resources shared by teachers who engage in Musical Futures programs:

Let It Be – includes marking / achievement checklist

Scouting for Girls – This ain’t a love song …’t%20a%20love%20song.pdf

Scouting for Girls – She’s so Lovely’s%20so%20lovely.pdf

Beat It

Beat It with tab


Musical Futures longitudinal survey

February 9, 2012

Half of the students who took part in  Musical Futures agreed that they felt better about school as a result. Read more on the above link.


Musical Futures meets MCUI 2011

July 16, 2011

Lesson Idea: In the spirit of “Musical Futures”, give your students access to the MP3 of “We’ve Got the Music” … divide them into groups of 4-6 with drums / guitars / keyboards / ukuleles / percussion, etc  … ask them to come up with their OWN version of “We’ve Got the Music” (about 30 mins) simply by using their ears, playing along with the MP3, experimenting and supporting each other … share their performance attempt with the class.

The key factor is that the student performance SHOULD sound different from the original MP3, reflecting the group’s creative interpretation.

“We’ve Got the Music” is the 2011 program song for MUSIC: COUNT US IN


MusicEducationUK free magazine

March 12, 2012

There’s a new online (free) magazine published in UK to support Music Education …


new Music Education publications

January 22, 2012

HERE is a selection of textbooks and resources re. music education, as used by some Australian universities.


New music teaching ideologies

July 3, 2011

A blog about NEW ways to teach Year 6 – 12 classroom music. Includes philosophical discussion AND free lesson plans.


nice slide show to inspire music teachers

January 20, 2013



NING for Music Educators (Australian)

April 25, 2011 is an Australian discussion forum for music educators.  It was set up with the intent of discussing ideas on classroom band programs, but it really is a forum for discussion on any aspect of Australian music teaching from P-12.  At present there is a small group of members, but I am hoping to build it up and draw on a wide range of professional knowledge and experience.

This group is completely FREE (in a monetary sense, not a moral or metaphysical sense).

Please come along and check it out.  The page is run as a ning, which is basically a social network with a particular focus.  It is great for online discussion, linking of video and photo and has facility for you to blog.  All you need to do is create an account.


OktavaSoft – software for instrumental teachers

June 26, 2013 – software designed to help instrumental teachers stay organised


online e-text for Music Appreciation

July 14, 2011 “Sound Reasoning”

“Sound Reasoning” is a web-based, introductory music appreciation course. It features an explanation, followed by a relevant musical audio quote.

This e-text offers a new approach to music appreciation for adults or 17-18 year old students, focusing on style-independent concepts. While the course concentrates primarily on Western classical and modern music, the concepts that are introduced apply to music of any style or era. The goal of “Sound Reasoning” is to equip you with questions that you may ask of any piece of music, thereby creating a richer and more comprehensive understanding of music both familiar and unfamiliar.


Orff Level 1 Course Jan 2012 – Melb

October 19, 2011

Level 1 Orff Schulwerk Course at ACU, Melb. - Wed 18th to Fri 20th, Mon 23rd to Wed 25th Jan, 2012 9am to 5pm

This 36 hour intensive course will take place at ACU, (Australian Catholic University, Melbourne) Victoria Parade, Fitzroy with presenters Susie Davies-Splitter and Dr Carol Richards.

Orff Schulwerk offers a holistic approach to music education. It integrates singing, speech activities, movement, folk dance and the playing of percussion instruments to encourage active music making in an inclusive atmosphere. The course is 36 hours and includes the following 6 subjects: Orchestration, Pedagogy, Recorder, Vocal, Movement and Dance and Technique and Improvisation. Participants will be encouraged to develop their understanding and skills in order to confidently share music experiences with students of all ages and stages of development.

This course is accredited through ANCOS (Australian National Council of Orff Schulwerk) and successful completion of this course will enable participants to gain credit at ACU towards a Graduate Certificate in Educational Studies* with the possibility of continuing into the Masters of Education course *Approval pending. No musical experience or knowledge is necessary however it is expected that participants will familiarise themselves with some basic music theory and concepts prior to the course.

This course is for early childhood, primary and secondary pre-service, studio and classroom teachers, music and performing arts specialists, caregivers, parents, music therapists, group leaders, allied health practitioners, musicians, artists and anyone who loves music or uses music in their workplace with children or adults. Early bird registrations are due by Fri 2nd Dec, 2011 and all applications must be received by 16th Dec, 2011. For further info and a flier contact


Orff NSW

January 24, 2010

Go to resource: Orff NSW is a non-profit organisation that supports teachers in music education, and is the NSW branch of the national association for Schulwerk methodology.

Their site has links to membership details, workshops, conferences, and further professional learning.


Orff NSW new website

July 27, 2011

… a brand new ‘Orff NSW’ website! It’s a one-stop-shop for fabulous resources, news, sample lessons, information about our courses in NSW and the ACT – including the Sydney Levels Courses in the September school holidays – and MORE!

All our Professional Development courses in NSW are endorsed by the NSWIT and are designed to strengthen your skills and confidence in teaching music and movement using the creative ‘Orff Schulwerk’ approach. Registrations for the ’Dance as a Creative Art’ workshop (4th August), on the Central Coast, presented by the wonderful Sue Lane, close this week.


Orff Schulwerk Association of South Australia

January 24, 2010

Go to resource: The Orff Schulwerk Association of South Australia is a non-profit organisation that supports teachers in music education, and is the SA branch of the national association for Schulwerk methodology. Read more…


partly free Music Tutor ‘app’

November 4, 2011


PBL Music – Project Based Learning

April 7, 2013

Try giving groups of students ‘big questions’ or composition tasks or performance challenges (eg. Battle of the Bands) and lots of space to self-direct with access to the internet … and see what they come up with. Some ideas HERE and HERE.


Penrith Valley Learning Centre

July 25, 2011

Penrith Valley Learning Centre is working through issues with troubled students via music recording and video creation projects.


PhD – instrumental teachers collaborate online

July 3, 2011

Welcome to the web portal for my PhD project. This project seeks to investigate the ways in which instrumental teachers can improve their teaching practice through collaboration with other instrumental teachers by means of a web based forum. It expects that the forum will facilitate the sharing of knowledge and experiences and become a medium for group problem solving thereby allowing teachers to learn from each others’ experiences and improve their own teaching practice.


Primary music ideas for classroom (FREE!)

July 31, 2012

LINK HERE – thanks to Midnight Music!

Amy Burns is an experienced elementary music teacher at Farhills Country Day School in New Jersey and the author of Technology Integration in the Elementary Music Classroom (highly recommended).

Amy’s writes about her classroom activities and also about the professional development workshops she runs at Elementary Music/Music Technology. She also has a website where she uploads notes from her conference presentations and maintains lists of useful links for Smartboard (interactive whiteboard) resources and more.

Amy has started curating collections of links on the visual sharing site Pinterest [this is something I'm finding very useful too. In the future I'll be writing a post about Pinterest and how you can use it to keep track of resources. You can find me on Pinterest here] and has boards that feature music she has used in her 2011-2012 concerts, iPad apps she uses in her PreK-Grade 3 classes and websites she uses in class.

Allison Friedman

Allison Friedman is a general music, chorus and band teacher at South Salem Elementary School and she maintains two websites: one contains student work, links and class information and the other is a wiki set up to share her interactive whiteboard resources, links and other files with music teachers.

Units of work for her general music classes can be found on the General Music page (follow the links to each year level). She also has links to the digital media work she has done with students, including podcasts, videos and pictures.

Teacher resources include worksheets and lesson ideas and a long list of Smartboard resources

Karen Garrett

Karen Garret – from Central Park School in Birmingham Alabama – is well-known for her Music Tech Teacher website containing excellent music games and quizzes. Most of the games were tailor-made my Karen herself, but they are available to use for free from her site. Popular games include Fling The Teacher – a hangman-style quiz game in which correct answers contribute pieces to trebuchet which “flings the teacher” once completed – and Hoop Shoot – a quiz in which a correct answer allows you to try your luck shooting a basketball into a hoop.

In addition, Karen shares an extensive collection of lesson plans, complete with objectives, correlation to national standards and step-by-step instructions. The lesson plan collection can be found here.

Cherie Herring

I first came across Cherie online while I was researching ideas for using interactive whiteboards in the music classroom. Cherie has contributed a number of resources to the SMART Exchange (the Smartboard file-sharing website). Cherie has her own blog – Just A Little More: Musings about music and technology – where she publishes Smartboard Notebook lesson files (use them as inspiration if you have a different type of IWB), interactive music site links, and iPad resources.

Like Amy Burns, Cherie is using Pinterest to curate her useful links and she has 60 boards that inlaced links for music iPad appsmusic education and many more!

Tanya LeJeune

Tanya is a Kodaly specialist from Colorado and blogs about her music classroom at Teaching Elementary Music: Tanya’s Blog. Tanya also has a collection of ideas for Kodaly teachers using interactive whiteboards – including videos of students in action – at her other blog: The Kodaly Aspiring Music Classroom.


random lessons using YouTube

January 27, 2013

THIS link takes you two random uses of YouTube in music-related lessons. If you have suggestions, PLEASE email them to schools.mpfl AT


Rhythm, Music & Education

January 24, 2010

Go to resource: Rhythm, Music & Education by Emile Jaques-Dalcroze, published by the Dalcroze Society, London (originally in 1921) sets out the Dalcroze methodology for music education. Read more…


Richard Gill talk (ABC FM) 9/14 August 2011

August 6, 2011
Richard Gill presents the annual ABC Classic FM Music Makers Address and will be talking of the joy of singing, the importance of imagination and the inspiration that music education can bring to all ages.

One of Australia’s pre-eminent conductors and a passionate advocate of music education, Richard specialises in opera, musical theatre and vocal and choral training.

Join us for this second Music Makers Address, hosted by ABC Classic FM’s Mairi Nicolson.
Plus, performances from 40 young singers from Southern Voices.

The Address will be recorded and broadcast in ABC Classic FM’s Music Makers on Sunday, August 14 at 1205.

DATE:                                    TUESDAY, AUGUST 9, 2011
TIME:                                    7pm – 8.15pm
No reservation is required and admission is free.
Doors open from 6pm.
VENUE:                                The Iwaki Auditorium,

ABC Southbank Centre,
120 Southbank Boulevard,
Southbank  (cnr of Southbank Boulevard and Sturt Street)
Please join Richard Gill and Mairi for refreshments in the Green Room at the conclusion of the evening.

For further information contact:
Ngaire Duffield, Producer, ABC Classic FM, Melbourne
p: +61 3 9626 1716 | m: 0408 052 336


RIME – April 2013, UK

June 7, 2013

Research in Music Education Conference in UK (April 2013)

Summaries and abstracts can be found HERE


Show and Tell

March 7, 2010

Go to resource: Show and Tell is a webpage published by the Department of Education and Training (NSW).

Read more…


Silly Solfege song

June 15, 2011

click here to see the sheet music of the “Silly Solfege Song

and here is a video to go with the song


Singing Classroom Workshops 2013

February 10, 2013

The Singing Classroom is a Professional Learning program designed and delivered by aMuse for generalist primary classroom teachers offering them support, confidence, skills and resources to sing more regularly with their students.

The workshops are interactive and fun (often hilarious!). Each participant receives a resource booklet and CD.

Two workshops are now available:

1. In-school workshops where the presenter comes into your school to work with all staff:

2. Full-day workshops where individual or groups of teachers can attend a centre for a five-hour workshop:

We encourage you to consider a workshop in your school, or to encourage friends and colleagues to get involved.

Sue Arney

Professional Learning Coordinator

Association of Music Educators

150 Palmerston Street.  Carlton 3053

P 03 9349 1048

F 03 9349 1052


Social networking for Music teachers

June 19, 2011

Use a global network of other Music teachers to inspire your teaching practice!

Andy Z has published an online PowerPoint with pointers to blogging, Twitter, RSS feeds and more …


teacher blog re. school band rehearsals

August 28, 2012

School band rehearsals from a different perspective: read the blog here


Teaching Music Magazine

February 19, 2010

Go to resource: Teaching Music Magazine is a periodical published by MENC (Music Educators National Conference, USA) and is available online via subscription. Read more…


Teaching rhythmics: principles and guidelines for teachers of Dalcroze eurhythmics

January 24, 2010

Go to resource: Teaching rhythmics: principles and guidelines for teachers of Dalcroze eurhythmics by Elizabeth Vanderspar, is published by the Dalcroze Society, London, 2005, and is recommended by Dalcroze Australia.


TED video on Music & Passion

June 17, 2011

Benjamin Zander has two infectious passions: classical music, and helping us all realize our untapped love for it — and by extension, our untapped love for all new possibilities, new experiences, new connections.

Watch the video here


The new Blooms – implications for music education

June 26, 2013

Read the article here:


The rhythm inside : connecting body, mind, and spirit through music

January 24, 2010

Go to resource: The rhythm inside : connecting body, mind, and spirit through music by Julia Schnebly-Black and Stephen Moore, is published by Rudra Press, Portland, Oregon, c1997, and is recommended for teachers by Dalcroze Australia. It has a section on Dalcroze exercises.


The Unfolding Human Potential: an exploration of the teaching of eurhythmics

January 24, 2010

Go to resource: The Unfolding Human Potential: an exploration of the teaching of eurhythmics by Mary Brice, and published by Editions Papillon, Geneva, 2004, examines the methodology of Dalcroze. Read more…


Toccata Blocks for teaching rhythm theory

May 30, 2013

Toccata blocks are concrete resources to assist students (from aged 4 – 104) when learning to read rhythms.


Unblocked student viewing of YouTube clips

March 23, 2011

There’s a new way to let students view YouTube clips online … The teacher copies the URL address from a YouTube clip, pastes it onto the website, clicks “create”, and it creates a new webpage (which students can view) with the YouTube clip on its own (without ads or comments). Copy and paste the newly create URL address and give it to your students.

Here’s an example I entered into ViewPure of ACO playing to surfing footage …

HINT: Don’t click on the “Download” button (bottom of ViewPure screen) – it is only advertising!


USQ music students collaborate for online success

May 28, 2012

Music teaching at USQ is being revolutionised by the social media and a new team-teaching approach which helps students to collaborate with their colleagues and to work with professional musicians.

The new teaching technique is the brainchild of Toowoomba-born singer and music lecturer Melissa Forbes, who abandoned a legal career to do what she loves – perform and teach music.

“The new teaching approach emerged from the second year song-writing class,” she said.

“The students needed to learn how to collaborate, be more flexible, and to better communicate musical ideas.”

“Most of our music graduates become school classroom music or instrumental teachers, so as they learn in a collegiate atmosphere, they are also learning how to teach and how to encourage creative group learning,” she said.

Mrs Forbes said the course was evolving organically and has incorporated the use of social media such as YouTube where students see and hear their favourite performers.

“The students seem far more interested in acoustic covers of songs rather than the song as sung by the original artist with the million dollar music video. They want to see someone who’s like themselves, who is really good at playing the song on an instrument,” she said.

“Some of these cover artists are so successful they’re doing tours of the USA on the basis of what they’ve uploaded to YouTube.”

“Copyright is a problem for uploading existing songs to the internet but the students are learning to write their own songs, perform them and use social media to upload their work to the internet,” Mrs Forbes said.

One of Mrs Forbes’ covers of Michael Jackson’s song “Don’t stop ‘til you get enough” from her album “No more Mondays” is on YouTube.

“We also use our own in-house social media platform ePortfolio so students can share their work in a multi-media environment,” Mrs Forbes said.

School of Creative Arts music co-ordinator Dr Phillip Gearing said the results of the new teaching method in the Bachelor of Creative Arts will emerge over the next few years however he will collate preliminary results from the first semester using the new teaching techniques and present them at an international conference in Liverpool, England in July.

In the new teaching format, students gather each week for two-hour workshops which address different musical topics where, for example, the lecturers demonstrate how they work together from the moment they pick up a new score, through the process of learning a new work to putting the finishing touches to a professional arrangement and performance.

Instrumental technique is also developed through weekly instrument-specific classes.

The music practice classes are taught in a team by Mrs Forbes, Dr Gearing, clarinettist Martin Crook and pianist Alison Riethmuller who demonstrate different aspects of performance, teaching students about the musical elements of rhythm, melody, harmony and intonation in the context of rehearsal and performance.

The effect of the team teaching classes is to hot-house the learning experience by combining the enthusiasm and musical skills of the lecturers and inspiring the creativity of their students.

Professional musicians are also invited to classes to perform and to talk about how they work together.

The workshop-style classes have proven very popular with the students notching up almost 100 percent attendance for the 22 first year music students.

Creative Arts head of school Dr Janet McDonald said the huge increase in the number of first year music students this year from throughout the state was a positive response to the updating of the University’s popular theatre, music, visual arts and creative media degrees.

“Students can study combined degrees across the creative arts, making our graduates versatile creative artists who will be ready for workplaces that have seen rapid change in the past few years,” Dr McDonald said.

For more information contact:

Melissa Forbes 07 4611 1153



Victorian Orff Schulwerk Association

January 24, 2010

Go to resource: The Victorian Orff Schulwerk Association is a non-profit organisation that supports teachers in music education, and is the Victorian branch of the national association for Schulwerk methodology. Read more…


VMTA lecture – instrumental learning research

July 3, 2011

This year’s VMTA Clifford Lecture is to be held at the State Library Theatrette on Sunday August 7, 2.00pm.

It will be presented by Prof Gary McPherson, Ormond Professor and Director,
Melbourne Conservatorium of Music.

The topic is:

“Evidence based approaches to teaching music to children and adolescents”

Every year, thousands of Australian children begin learning a musical
instrument and embark on an aspect of skill acquisition that is not only
complex and time-consuming, but which also requires years of dedicated
practice and commitment in order to achieve success. A major challenge for
research, therefore, is to find better and more efficient ways for
developing the range of skills required to perform proficiently.

With the above as his context, Professor McPherson will describe recent
research that provides new insight into the nature of musical ability,
development and identity.  His presentation will be framed to show how
development is uniquely individual and how various forces act to either
enhance or hinder each learner¹s musical potential. Practical examples will
be included and discussed that teachers may like to consider in their
everyday teaching practice and that have been shown to enhance student
learning and motivation to continue learning and participating well into
adult life.

Tickets: $20 VMTA members/ $25 non-members/ $12 full-time students

To book, simply call 03 9415 1314 or email the office
Booking forms are also downloadable from our website


VOSA – Victorian Orff Schulwerk Association

January 2, 2011

Go to resource: VOSA (Vic Orff Schulwerk Assoc) Resources, articles, ideas and lesson plans for incorporating the Orff approach to Music education (hands-on percussion and ensembles). Resources are split into two sections: Early Childhood resources (aged 0 – 8) & ages 9+. Also includes ideas for Music and movement.


WA Piano pedagogy convention 2012

November 6, 2011

13-15 April, 2012


West Australian Orff Schulwerk Association

January 24, 2010

Go to resource: The West Australian Orff Schulwerk Association is a non-profit organisation that supports teachers in music education, and is the WA branch of the national association for Schulwerk methodology. Read more…