Grade Level: Middle School (6-8)

Fiddling, Folk and Improvisation Sessions from ASTA National Conference

At the 2020 ASTA National Conference, I attended several sessions on fiddle, folk and improvisation.  Fiddle tunes are excellent tools for teaching ear training, intonation, style, bow technique, memorization, and more. Here are key takeaways. Teaching How to Make a Simple Fiddle Tune Come Alive (Andy Reiner, Dave Reiner) The handout had many tune suggestions…
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Looking Past the Grade: Emphasizing Feedback in String Assessment

Presented at American String Teachers Association National Conference Orlando, FL, March, 2020 by Tim Nowak, East Carolina University and Scott Glasser, Arizona State University Too often, students look straight to the number in the lower right corner (or, in musical ensembles, to the resultant chair placement they’ve earned based on that number).  This session focused…
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ASTA Session – “Help! My Students Don’t Play in Tune!”

One of my favorite sessions at ASTA 2020 was entitled “Help! My Students Don’t Play in Tune,” by Margaret Schmidt (Arizona State University) which of course piqued my interest. We’re all forever striving to improve our students’ aural skills, pitch recognition, and this is one of the more difficult skills to develop in string playing.…
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MMEA Theory/Ear Training In Rehearsal Session

At this year’s annual Missouri Music Educators Association (MMEA) conference, I attended many sessions relating to secondary vocal music. One session that I found particularly meaningful was James Henry’s session on integrating aural skills and music theory into the ensemble rehearsal. The clever and cheesy name of this session “Guido Together Like Rameau-Lam-A-Ding-A-Dong” may have…
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Heritage Middle School Leading Innovations – ELA/SS 8

Mission: The overall goal of our combined ELA and Social Studies class is to help you, as a student, grow as a thinker, writer, and a communicator.  During out time together, you will develop and demonstrate literacy and social studies skills like critical reading, writing, analytical thinking, and research.  Our focus will be to do…
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Discovery Middle School Leading Innovation – Special Education Math

I viewed a video of a Kindergarten student that was able to describe exactly where she was in her writing goal, where she had been and what needs to be done to move toward proficiency of the goal. I briefly shared the impact this video had on me with Special Education teacher, Joanie New. She…
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Rehearsing Full Orchestras with Confidence

While attending the American String Teachers Association National Conference in Albuquerque, New Mexico, a clinic was presented over having Full Orchestras at the middle and high school level. Knowing that this is a conversation had among both administration and teachers alike, sharing key points from the presentation seemed beneficial to all who are interested. Dr.…
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Orchestra- ASTA Convention

One of the sessions I attended was titled, “Help! I keep running out of bow! Strategies for Teaching Slow Music in the string orchestra classroom,” presented by Molly K. Baugh from the University of Michigan. Besides being a solid engaging presenter, Molly had lots of great tips and ideas to share. As teachers, we need…
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Dyslexia Knowledge and in Music

I attended the American String Teacher Association National Convention March 6th-9th.   One of the many sessions I attended was on Dyslexia.  It was a general knowledge about dyslexia and then went into details about how it affects music teaching.  Dyslexia has been a new topic that the state of Missouri has been trying to spread…
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Student Creation with Augmented & Virtual Reality

FETC 2019 Description: Learn skills such as animating student created VR content, annotating 360 images, 3D modeling, and student help stations or tutorials using a variety of AR tools. Lastly, explore how 360 cameras such as Theta 360, Nikon KeyMission, and Google Cardboard camera can be creatively integrated in the classroom. The increase in accessibility of…
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