My experiences visiting these classrooms had been very enlightening. I have learned so much, and have gotten an insight into what it’s like to teach music technology in a classroom. These teachers and are instructors are using technology to allow students to have an experience with music in a way that is different from the traditional band, orchestra, or string classroom. When we visited Harrisonburg High School we got to see students using Ableton live. A lot of the students weren’t in the music program, and were doing it because they enjoy music. The problem with this class was that it was early and a lot of the students were tired and falling asleep. We also visited a middle school where they were using the exact same program. What I found interesting was that the students in this class were working Ableton just as well as the high schoolers were. This shows how feasible it is to use this technology to help students create music. His middle school class is thinking of Dj’ing part of a school dance in the spring, and that shows how this can be applied to the real world. It also demonstrates to the students that there are other outlets for music besides just playing an instrument or singing. There are programs that allow you take pop songs and remix them.
The Elementary school we visited didn’t really use technology, but it showed how starting music theory earlier can help students later. The class we observed were third graders. The teacher led the class through a series of games and exercises to help them differentiate between rhythms and solfege. This class was different from what I had growing up, but I think it can be beneficial because the students were already able to match pitches, tell the difference between two close rhythms, and identify simpl solfege. This was the most interesting observation I went to, and the one I seemed to learn the most from.
Overall, I really enjoyed these practicums because they showed me how you implement technology to provide a different type of musical experiences. This also allowed me to see other teaching styles from what I grew up with.