Pass the Baton:

Empowering All Music Students

Transform your students from passive consumers to vibrant creatives!

All too often, the music classroom stifles students with one-size-fits-all curricula and repertoire. In Pass the Baton, authors Kathryn Finch and Theresa Hoover turn that paradigm on its head, offering a vision of music education that empowers students as critical thinkers who exercise voice and choice to question, discover, connect, and play like never before—in and out of the classroom.

Pass the Baton offers readers a comprehensive guide to crafting engaging music lessons that transform students from passive consumers to vibrant creatives. Whether you’re looking to rethink general music or overhaul your ensemble groups, Pass the Baton is chock-full of generative, actionable, and impactful tools. Finch and Hoover have drawn on deep research and years of experience in the music room to provide a guide for all music educators to create a learner-centered environment and give students the opportunity to truly own the creative process.

Support for Pass the Baton

What are people saying about Pass the Baton: Empowering All Music Students?

This book is a must read for teachers who want to empower students to become self-sufficient lifelong learners. It is a guidebook for creating a vibrant classroom where student learning is the first priority.
Kristin Gomez
Orchestra Director,
Arlington Public Schools
Pass the Baton is a must-read for all who desire to provide their students with access and opportunities to a lifetime of music making and a deep love of music. With an emphasis on the artistic processes of creating, performing, responding, and connecting, the authors have done an outstanding job at presenting concepts and connections to build a culturally responsive, relevant, and meaningful music education that is collaborative and student centric. 
Scott Sheehan
NAfME President
Band Director, Hollidaysburg HS
Pass the Baton is the perfect, adaptable resource we have needed in music education! Kathryn Finch and Theresa Hoover have achieved the ideal balance of thought-provoking, accessible guidance and practical resources and activities. Music educators looking to facilitate their students having more autonomy, buy-in, and voice need to check out this book! We need to take a step back so our students can take a step forward; this book gives us the tools to do so!
Scott Edgar
Associate Professor of Music,
Lake Forest College
Addressing common concerns
Empowered Music Students

Episode 69 – Creating Empowered Musicians: Addressing Common Concerns

Creating Empowered Musicians: Addressing Common Concerns Episode 69 of the podcast, Theresa and Kathryn address common concerns from music teachers about transitioning to more student-empowered classrooms. The episode focuses on how teachers can relinquish control while effectively meeting educational standards…



With over 40 years of combined experience in the music classroom, Kathryn and Theresa share their passion for music education and student empowerment in ways that will inspire meaningful change in the profession.

“When you empower students, the focus shifts. Students become the driving force, making the learning more personal, meaningful, and powerful.”