Friday, February 7, 2020

Four Things

A lifetime of reflection about my work and still looking at ways to capture a bit of what feels important in the net of language. In a course with high school music teachers here in Singapore, I shared this little summary of the four things I think we’re intending to teach. 

• Memorable Material:  Which pieces/ songs/ styles/ dances are best suited for your particular situation? Pay attention to:
-      Cultural relevancy and inclusion
-      Quality literature that will pass (or has passed) the test of time
-      Inspiring or poetic or funny or relevant text
-      Music you love

            • Musical Process: How do you teach the material? Pay attention to:
-      The class flowing like a piece of music
-      Engaging the children and keep them active and involved 
-      Developing step by step so they feel successful
-      Challenging them, but not overwhelming them 
-      Educating their whole self: hand, head, hearing and heart

            • A Child Who Needs to Feel Valued: Do you feel the class as an opportunity for each 
                 child to feel known and welcomed? Pay attention to:
-      Belief in each child’s generalmusicality, look for each child’s specific musicality.
-      Give them opportunities to share their interests. 
-      Look for moments of a breakthrough in understanding or mastery. 
-      Praise their actions and accomplishments, not their general personality.

              • A Connected Community: What might music class offer the school community as 
                  a whole that helps unify the mission? 
-      Look to unite the school with a shared song repertoire.
-      Look for ways to add life and color to school events and ceremonies.
-      Educate colleagues and parents as to how music helps cultivate the intelligence, imagination and humanitarian promise of each child and the community as a whole. 
 That’s a lot of things asking for our attention. But if can unite our intention and attention, the rewards are… well, simply marvelous. 

1 comment:

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