Over the course of my undergraduate career my classes, jobs, and other experiences have influenced the way I think, plan, and teach music to various groups of people. I have learned how to play brass, woodwind, string and percussion instruments, as well as the proper singing technique. Through these classes I have learned how to instruct beginners to play these instruments. In addition I have learned how to teach vocal warm ups and songs by ear. Throughout all these instrumental and vocal technique classes I have learned how to teach small groups of instruments Folk songs, song I arranged, or band literature. These experiences have helped me feel more comfortable teaching instruments I’m not comfortable playing, as well as giving more concise feedback so students retain more.
In my music education courses we have had a lot of discussions about sequencing lessons and curriculum. When I write lesson plans now I think about how I can sequence my objectives and curriculum so everything builds off each other. I also think about how my objectives can connect to one another so students retain more. In groups we have created and designed curriculums for several different mediums such as: Ukulele, recording technology, and high school instrumental courses (http://alexisannejohnson.weebly.com/leadership). This has taught me how to create broad objectives for students and then design lessons for those objectives.
I have also learned how to wind our lessons forward and backwards for students who are moving ahead or having trouble keeping up. This has helped me make sure that when I write lesson plans they accessible to all types of students at all different levels. In all of my music education classes I have written various lesson plans for a number of different ensembles. In addition I have learned how to adapt my lesson plans for those who play non-traditional instruments like Ukulele. This has made it so I can make music accessible to more students. My courses have also explored using different technology platforms to create music. I have designed lessons using the Makey Makey, Groove Pizza, and several apps that make music accessible to students who may not want to play an instrument. I have observed classes where the students were collaborating to write songs and this gave me insight into how to teach a class without using band, orchestra, or string instruments.
In my earlier music education courses we have explored various developmental theories.. This has helped me understand how students develop at different stages and life, and therefore how I can teach in a way that is most effective for them.
Lastly, I have learned more about the administrative side of being a teacher. I have written trip handbook that include classroom expectations and grading policies. I have also written a trip proposal that includes itineraries, transportation, housing options, and a budget. My marching band procedures class has taught me how to write these proposers as well as how band booster programs are run. In addition we have learned about teaching marching percussion and color guard, and writing drill. This class has taught me about the other side of being a teacher besides just writing lesson plans and teaching repertoire.
Through all of my courses I have learned how to make music accessible to all types of students with all types of abilities. I have learned how to teach various different instruments and voice to students. I am grateful for all the opportunities I have had and will have in the future because they have made me a better educator.
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