From a Distance: Giving Students Voice and Choice

In my last blog post, Focus on What We Can Do, I discussed how during distance learning we cannot try to replicate everything we did in our classrooms. It’s not the same and we can’t try to make it that way. Instead, by focusing on what we can do now, there are numerous ways we can empower students so they still have meaningful musical experiences. Providing opportunities for voice and choice is one of the … Continue reading “From a Distance: Giving Students Voice and Choice”

Focus on What We Can Do

Many of us have been in this new “distance learning” phase for a few weeks now – or as A.J. Juliani calls it “emergency remote learning.” Whatever term you use, we’re discovering that it’s not the same. We can’t replicate what happens in our classrooms online. And that’s ok. I think instead we need to focus on what we can do with this time. School vs. Learning In 2014, George Couros published a blog post … Continue reading “Focus on What We Can Do”

How to Create Quick, Stand-Alone Videos: Flipgrid Shorts

This is another unintended, yet timely post about technology tools I’ve been using recently. Last time I wrote about using Flipgrid to maintain community in music classes. This post is also about Flipgrid, but how teachers can use it to easily create video content when suddenly faced with teaching digitally. Recently I’ve had the need to create short videos for my students and their families to explain how to use various tech tools and complete … Continue reading “How to Create Quick, Stand-Alone Videos: Flipgrid Shorts”

Maintaining Community When Teaching Virtually: Try Flipgrid!

While this is technically the fourth in the series of short posts about technology tools, it wasn’t my intended topic for the week! However, given the current events and everything going on with #COVID19, this seems to be the most relevant. Teaching in a brand new school this year and starting a band program from scratch, I have given a lot of thought about the culture and community I wanted to build. Developing relationship, between … Continue reading “Maintaining Community When Teaching Virtually: Try Flipgrid!”

Flat: Music Notation for Google Docs

Welcome back to the third in a series of short posts about tech tools I have been loving recently. Last time I wrote about my new favorite digital curation tool, Wakelet. Before that, the topic was Google Keep and how to use it to organize conference resources. This week I’ll be telling you about a great tool that makes it easy to incorporate music notation into your Google Docs and Slides. Flat for Docs While … Continue reading “Flat: Music Notation for Google Docs”

Wakelet in the Music Room

Welcome to the second in a series of short posts about technology tools I have been using recently! Last week I wrote about using Google Keep to organize conference resources. This week I’ll introduce you to my new favorite curation tools, Wakelet. I first learned about Wakelet about a year ago. In its simplest form, Wakelet is a digital curation tool. Similar to Pinterest, users can save content in one easy-to-find location. I have found … Continue reading “Wakelet in the Music Room”

Google Keep for Conference Resources

Welcome to the first in a series of short posts about technology tools I have been using recently. This particular tool helps immensely with organization! Before winter break, I had the privilege of attending the Virginia Music Educator’s Association Conference and the Midwest Band and Orchestra Clinic. These are events I look forward to every year, as I imagine many educators do. One thing I often hear people discussing is the best way to keep … Continue reading “Google Keep for Conference Resources”

Top Five Blog Posts of 2019

It’s hard to believe we are almost two weeks into 2020! The past year has been a whirlwind. There were several awesome professional opportunities, including a new job, my experience at the Google Innovator Academy and two exciting projects that will be released in 2020. There were also some challenging personal events that led to the recent blogging inconsistency, but I am hopeful to get that back on track in the new year. There are … Continue reading “Top Five Blog Posts of 2019”

The Concerts are Over…Now What?

It’s that time of year where many band directors are gearing up for winter or holiday concerts. We have a single track focus, making sure that everything is *just right* before putting it in front of an audience. But then the concert is over and the panic of, “what do I do now?!?” often sets in! While obviously we want to continue making music, there needs to be some kind of change to the daily … Continue reading “The Concerts are Over…Now What?”

Listening With Purpose

I read an interesting article recently about listening. It wasn’t intended for music teachers, but it resonated with me for a lot of reasons. The author, A.J. Juliani, talked about how even though we may listen to something with a purpose, we often still miss things. What one person hears, another may miss. We all have limitations and we all have blind spots. You can check out A.J.’s article here: The Surprising Research About Our … Continue reading “Listening With Purpose”