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Crafting Student-Centered Lessons (Part 2 of 2)

In part two of this interview, Kathryn and Theresa continue the conversation with Jesse Rathgeber, a music education professor at Augustana College, about his views on planning and teaching student-centered music classes. If you missed part 1, check it out here: Crafting Student-Centered Lessons, Part 1.  Transforming an Elementary School Performance  One specific area that…

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Crafting Student-Centered Lessons (Part 1 of 2)

In this two-part interview, Kathryn and Theresa talk to Jesse Rathgeber, a music education professor, about his views on planning and teaching student-centered music classes. Jesse’s wealth of knowledge and passion for music education are evident, creating an interview you don’t want to miss. Here are some highlights and key takeaways.  About Jesse Rathgeber Jesse…

Creativity and Improvisation in Ensembles (Part 3 of 3)

Sarah Gulish is a high school music teacher outside of Philadelphia, PA. She teaches orchestra, guitar, and “Creativity and Collaboration,” which is a required course at her school. Sarah is a 2007 graduate of Temple University, where she later earned a PhD in Music Education. Sarah runs F-flat Books, a music education publishing company, and…

Creativity and Improvisation in Ensembles (Part 2 of 3)

Matthew Shaffer is middle school orchestra director in State College, PA. He earned a Bachelor’s degree in music education from Penn State University and a Master’s degree in music education from Lebanon Valley College. While Matt is primarily an orchestral cellist, he also played in a band in high school. That band experience, jamming with…

Creativity and Improvisation in Ensembles (Part 1 of 3)

Marissa Guarriello is a 6th-12th grade orchestra teacher in the Penn Ridge School District, in Eastern Pennsylvania, as well as a co-author of the book, The Creative String Orchestra. Marissa is an advocate for creativity in the orchestra classroom, even though that’s not how she got her start in music! In this interview, Marissa talks…

Empowering Students With Games

Abigail Blair is pre-k through 5th-grade general music teacher in the Chicago suburbs. She has a bachelor’s degree from Augustana College and a master’s degree from Boston University. Abigail has created several games that help empower her music students.  Prior to creating the games, Abigail felt her student couldn’t talk about music, despite what she…

How Checklists Can Give Students Ownership in Music

Holly Gage is an elementary and middle school band director in South Dakota. She has taught in a variety of settings in both South Dakota and Washington DC and during that time has worked to make her classrooms student centered. Holly likes to use checklists in her band room to give students ownership of their…

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Incorporating Student-Selected Repertoire in Ensembles

Laura Johnson is a band director at a Title I middle school in Chesapeake, Virginia. Before moving to Virginia, she taught middle school band in central Minnesota. Laura is passionate about having students select repertoire in her ensembles. She was inspired by her own high school band experience, where she and her classmates were given…