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Tuesday, February 28, 2017

My Go-To Online Resources for Music Teaching

Tomorrow is the first day of March and that means Music In Our Schools Month! I hope you are able to celebrate and advocate for the importance of music education this month and have tons of fun in the process! I have a few special plans to celebrate with all of you as well, all designed to make the job of music teaching a little less stressful and a little more meaningful (and fun!). Today I'm kicking things off with a list of some of my go-to online resources that I refer to regularly as a music teacher. These are the sites I find myself telling other music teachers about constantly, so if you haven't heard of these before, I know you'll find them useful!

I want to be clear that I am not being paid or otherwise motivated to share any of these sites with you- these are all places that I really and truly use in my teaching and in most cases have been for years! I hope you discover something new to help reinvigorate your teaching and make your life a little easier!

1. Beth's Notes (find songs to address specific concepts)

Beth's Notes is my favorite source for finding material to address specific musical concepts. The site has tons of awesome features, but the ones I go back to again and again are the rhythm and pitch indexes. Whether I'm looking for more sol-mi songs or a new way to teach half notes, those indexes are great resources with tons of material.

2. Mama Lisa (find songs from specific cultures/countries/regions)

If I'm looking for songs from a particular country or region, Mama Lisa is my first stop. The site has tons of material organized by continent, country, language, and more, and all of it is well-researched. Many of the songs include notation, sound recordings, translations, and background information from native sources!

3. Midnight Music (find tons of ideas for music technology)

If I am wondering how to use a particular piece of new technology in my teaching, looking for apps to use as a center, or just wanting to get new ideas for integrating technology in the music classroom, Midnight Music is by far my favorite resource. Besides all of the wonderful articles, podcasts, and other great resources on every topic relating to technology in the music room you could possibly imagine, you'll also find a set of music note image files you can download for free to use in worksheets, posters, or other visuals (much easier than using a font in my opinion)!

4. MusicEd Blogs (keep up on music education blogs in one spot)

I love getting new ideas from my favorite music education blogs- being a blogger myself has only made me a more avid reader of other blogs, and I'm constantly finding new ones! The trouble is I don't have tons of time to check on each individual blog all the time, and I often miss blog posts if they don't show up in my social media feeds. Because of this problem Jennifer (from The Yellow Brick Road) and I created MusicEd Blogs. I know it sounds like I'm plugging my own project, which I am, but I am honestly a frequent user myself and I know how much I love having it! The site gathers all of the latest posts from tons of music education blogs all over the web in one spot so you can quickly look in one place and see the latest posts from all of the blogs. There's also an index with links to all of the blogs, and you can sort by topic to find new blogs you may not have seen yet!

If you haven't yet, you'll want to follow the MusicEd Blogs Community page on Facebook ASAP- we're going to be sharing a different tip for teaching rhythm from tons of amazing music education blogs every day during Music In Our Schools Month! Starting March 1st, you can find all of the tips by searching for #31daysofrhythm

Did you find any new resources on this list? I love all of them dearly and use them ALL THE TIME so I hope you've found something to make your music teaching better! Happy MIOSM!

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