Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Careers in Music

What does a music student do after graduation? Many different careers in music are available. There are the obvious - performance and education - and the not-so-obvious, such as arts management.

My 17-year-old son is more technical than creative. Although he sings, plays bass guitar, and has learned a little piano, he wasn't considering anything musical for a career. He recently took a career assessment which required him to enter his level of interest in a variety of things. "Piano Technician" was third from the top on the career list that was prepared for him from this assessment. He's probably not going to pursue that but I was still pleased that something musical came up.


Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Music for Homeschoolers, part 1

How do you incorporate music into your homeschool curriculum? There are several options.

1) Private music lessons are the best source of music education. Weekly lessons will motivate most students to practice. Individual instruction from a qualified teacher gives immediate feedback that is necessary for musical advancement. Many teachers provide recitals and participate in music festivals to give their students more opportunities to perform.

2) Some communities have children's choirs and/or orchestras. You can contact these organizations to find their criteria for enrollment and determine whether they might be suitable for your children. There are bands, orchestras, and choirs for home school students as well. Contact your state and local home school organizations to find what is available in your locale.

3) Listening to music from different genres is a great way to develop an appreciation for music. Most libraries have classical recordings that can be checked out. Start with something familiar, such as Beethoven's 5th Symphony. Point out the main theme and teach your children to listen for when it returns. You can also attend concerts in your area. Many community orchestras and choirs offer free or low-cost concerts. Whenever possible, learn about the music that will be performed.

4) Encourage your children to read composer stories. An excellent resource for younger children is Music For Little Mozarts Discovery Book. This book was designed to be used with a piano method for young beginners, but the Discovery book, along with the CD which is sold separately, provides stories and musical examples of music from well-known classical composers, such as Beethoven and Mozart.

5) Sing. Use CD's, DVD's, etc. and sing along. Encourage your children to sing with you. There are many recordings and videos of children's music. Choose an age-appropriate selection that you and your children enjoy. Sing. Clap to the beat. Younger children may enjoy marching to the beat and playing rhythm instruments. This is, by far, the best way to enjoy music together as a family.

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Monday, June 16, 2008

Share Your Favorite Music Teaching Tips

Welcome to MJSheetMusic's "Music Teaching Tips" blog. Please consider sharing your favorite music teaching tip. Whether you're a teacher, parent, or student, tell us what has worked for you.

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