Volume 71, Issue 2
A Quarterly Publication from the Indiana Music Education Association and Foundation
You’re the Expert, Teach Your Way
Tools for Every Style of Teaching Introducing Quaver’s Song-Based Lessons – 38 new lessons using tools and techniques inspired by Kodály, Orff, and Music Learning Theory approaches to music education.
Try 8 new lessons FREE in your classroom for 30 days! Visit QuaverMusic.com/IN2016 today and download a bonus song or poster of your choice to keep!
©2016 QuaverMusic.com, LLC
@QuaverMusic AUTUMN 2016
ASSOCIATION AND FOUNDATION
JEFFREY SCOTT DOEBLER IMEA EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE
KEVIN GERRITY President CHRIS TAYLOR President-Elect
TONYA ANGLE Immediate Past President AREA REPRES E N TATI V ES AREA 1
KRISTIN LOOS AREA 2
COLLEEN PHILLIPS AREA 3
MATT DENNISTON AREA 4
MICHELLE BADE AREA 5
KATY STRAND AREA 6
JULIE GRAY AREA 7
ADRIENNE COLLIGNON AREA 8
J SCOTT COOKSEY IMEA C OL L EGIATE R EP S
T A B L E
C O N T E N T S
ALLISON HOPPER ALICIA HAMAKER
What’s New? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
REC ORDING S ECR ETAR Y
Book Review . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
60-Second Profile . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7
LANE VELAYO Executive Director LAURA POTTER Operations Manager IMEA Executive Offices 100 E Thompson Rd., Indianapolis, Indiana 46227 Phone 317-780-4100 Fax 317-780-4110 F
Educator to Educator . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 Instrument Upkeep Tips from the Experts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Training the Transgender Singer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 Using Multiphonics to Help Clarinet Students in the Altissimo Range . . . . 18 The Six Week Circus: The Hoosier Track Marching Band Tradition . . . . . . . 22 Every Student Succeeds Act, What You Need to Know . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26
Twitter: @INMusicEd Facebook: facebook.com/INMusicEd
“Meaningful Movement Dalcroze Eurythmics for All” . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28 Cover photography: Angie Elsten Photography
••• Fort Wayne Children’s Folk Dance Festival
••• Future Music Educators Colloquium Juniors and Seniors in High School interested in pursuing a career in Music Education may participate in IMEA’s Future Music Educators Colloquium. Hosted during the conference, this immersive experience provides interested students the opportunity to attend conference sessions and hear from leaders within the profession about what it takes to become a music educator. Interested students must self-nominate no later than December 1st. Please visit www.IMEAMusic.org > Student Programs > Future Music Educators Colloquium
••• Circle the State with Song IMEA has launched a new site specifically for Circle the State with Song. On this site, teachers may access sample lesson plans specific to this year’s repertoire as well as listening tracks for students. The registration deadline is December 8th. Visit CircletheState.IMEAMusic.org for more information.
••• Indiana Society for Music Teacher Education Chair, Dr. Caroline Jetton The Fall Workshop of the Indiana Society of Music Teacher Education (ISMTE) was held on October 14, 2016 at the IMEA Executive Office. Glenda Ritz, Indiana Superintendent of Schools, and Celya Glowacki, Indiana Department of Education (IDOE) Fine Arts Coordinator, were our guests. After Ritz’s remarks, we discussed the mandate for music instruction in Indiana schools as well as the benefits and roadblocks to a requirement that all Indiana students complete at least 1 credit in the fine arts for graduation, regardless of the diploma track they are pursuing. We learned about Glowacki’s responsibilities at IDOE and discussed potential intersections with music teacher education faculty in the state. We briefly discussed the Assessment and Evaluation page on IMEA website and began planning for our gathering at IMEA in January, which will be held Thursday, January 12, from 10:00- 4:00. ISMTE will meet again on November 3, 2017 from 10:00-3:00 on the campus of Butler University.
In addition to the Indianapolis location of the Indiana Children’s Folk Dance Festival, IMEA will host a new site in Fort Wayne on the campus of IPFW. The date and location are: Fort Wayne Saturday, April 22, 2017 2:00pm – 4:30pm IPFW Fieldhouse 2101 E. Coliseum Blvd. Fort Wayne, IN 46805 Teachers interested in using this curriculum and participating in the event can now download the materials for free on the IMEA website. Simply visit www.IMEAMusic.org > student programs > Children’s Folk Dance Festival.
••• Festival & Clinic IMEA’s Festival & Clinic registration is now open, with new sites and clinician information. Provide your students with a fantastic ensemble performance opportunity that includes written and recorded feedback, as well as a clinic opportunity with a highly qualified music educator clinician. SITE SCHEDULE FOR 2017: February 24/25, 2017 Area 4: Northside Middle School, Muncie, IN: Friday the 24th, Choral/Saturday the 25th Instrumental Area 6: Butler University, Clowes Hall & Schrott Center, Indianapolis, IN: Friday the 24th, Instrumental /Saturday the 25th, Choral March 3/4, 2017 Area 4: Anderson High School, Anderson, IN: Instrumental Only Saturday, March 4th only Area 8:Nathaniel Scribner Middle School, New Albany, IN: Instrumental and Choral Saturday, March 4th only March 10/11, 2017 Area 2: University of Indiana South Bend, South Bend, IN: Instrumental and Choral Area 5: Otter Creek Middle School, Terre Haute, IN: Instrumental and Choral Saturday, March 11th Only Area 6: Mohawk Trails Elementary, Carmel, IN: Elementary Choral and Orff Saturday, March 11th Only Area 7: Owen Valley High, Spencer, IN: Bands Only Friday, March 10th Only March 17/18, 2017 Area 3: Frankfort High School, Frankfort, IN: Instrumental Friday the 17th, Choral Saturday the 18th.
Learn more at: www.IMEAMusic.org > Student Programs > Festival & Clinic
••• Research Chair, Dr. Don Ester
••• Tri-M Chair, Kathleen Swayzee
Proposals for the research and best practice poster session at the 2017 conference will be welcomed until Dec. 1 (extending the original due date from Nov. 15). In-service teachers, graduate students, university faculty, and others are encouraged to submit their work for consideration. See the IMEA website for additional submission details. Please contact Don Ester (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you have any questions.
Greetings from your State Tri-M Chair. I have spoken with so many college and high school students who tell me they wished their high school had a Tri-M Music Honor Society. Do something great for your school and community! Our state carries, on average, about 15-20 active chapters. We would LOVE to see more schools involved. Start a Tri-M Chapter this year! If you need help getting started, I would be happy to point you in the right direction.
Book Review BY ELIZABETH A. CRAWFORD Phillip O. Paglialonga Squeak Big: Practical Fundamentals for the Successful Clarinetist. Medina: Imagine Music, 2015. 109 pages. Big squeaks! These are two words that conjure up fear and anxiety in reed players, but Dr. Phillip Paglialonga has used those words as the clever title of his new book. A fantastic overview of fundamentals for successful clarinet playing, Squeak Big will appeal to clarinetists of all abilities, as well as to school band directors who can use it as a resource for helping their clarinet sections improve. Beginning with the basics of good embouchure formation, Dr. Paglialonga guides the reader in his step-by-step process, aided by the use of photographs. An accompanying chart that highlights audible issues, possible causes, and solutions (p. 8), is vital in helping players diagnose potential problems they may have as a result of a poor embouchure. Additional photographs and exercises go beyond the initial basic embouchure lesson, and provide a backdrop for discussion on tonal development in subsequent chapters. Music teachers will find the chapters on fingering choices and articulation particularly beneficial to their students. Throughout my years of teaching, I have found that many students are unaware of the alternate fingerings on clarinet or, they only use alternate fingerings, having never been taught the standard fingerings. Dr. Paglialonga clearly delineates five basic principles (pp. 41-45) of fingering on the Boehm system clarinet, principles that are absolutely critical in the development of clean technique. Diagrams and exercises support the discussion, so that even without a private teacher, students will be able to quickly grasp the ideas and correct deficiencies. With regard to articulation—the scourge of many clarinetists (and their directors)—Dr. Paglialonga reinforces concepts from the masters of clarinet articulation: Daniel Bonade (former principal clarinet of the Philadelphia, Cleveland, and NBC Orchestras), as well as his mentor, Fred Ormand (Professor of Clarinet Emeritus, University of Michigan), and additionally offers a unique way for students to actually witness the vibration of the reed (page 50). By having students blow through the wide end of the barrel, as it is connected to the mouthpiece, students are afforded with a much better understanding of the way the reed vibrates in their mouth. This has the dual effect of allowing students to hear and see changes in reed vibration. Squeak Big would function well as a textbook for music education tech classes, serving as a sort of “owner’s manual” for non-clarinetists. Several of the broader concepts, such as relaxation and good practice habits, will appeal to all musicians, making it an invaluable resource for all music educators, one to be visited time and again. While there are many great pedagogical resources on clarinet playing, Dr. Phillip Paglialonga adeptly combines many of the most accepted performance practices with new ideas in a clear and concise manner. His thorough, yet easy-to-understand, style makes this a must for clarinetists and educators alike. • Elizabeth A. Crawford serves as Associate Professor of Music—Clarinet at Ball State University.
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Sarah Hassler is a music educator’s music educator. She is the music specialist at Cherry Tree Elementary school in Carmel, is Associate Conductor with the Indianapolis Children’s Choir, and has led a number of IMEA choirs, including the Elementary Honor Choir and Circle the State with Song. A practitioner of the Orff-Schulwerk method, she teaches certification courses in movement for music educators at DePaul University and Anderson University.
What drives you to be so active in the community? To me, it’s all about finding my bliss. My bliss is music and teaching. Every opportunity I have to dive deeper into that world just fuels the fire for me even more. Whether it’s teaching in the classroom, or leading a choir for Circle the State with Song, or traveling to teach at the American Embassy School for a week, each of these opportunities just gives me so much energy, and I fall in love with different aspects of this profession. As long as it gives me energy, I’m going to keep doing it. And I have a lot of energy! How has your career focus evolved with time? You know, I didn’t much care for the pedagogy I was learning in college decades ago. I wanted to be more open with my teaching, more free. It wasn’t until I encountered the Orff-Schulwerk method that I really found a perspective I could embrace. It’s a critical part of this methodology that a child’s play is their work, and when we’re teaching, we should tap into that sense of play. So I have students in my classroom kicking their shoes off, and they’re moving. They’re dancing. And we’re playing games that feel so natural to them, but then there’s this moment where they
realize, “Oh, I can sing!” I want every student that comes through my classroom to know that they have a voice, and they can find that voice and they can use it. It starts with basic movement, and with speaking and language, and eventually we can help our students bridge the gap between what they’re singing, and how that looks on the staff to read the music. I have kindergarteners improvising! I’m getting ready to start recorders with my 3rd graders, and they will be improvising. Maybe with just two notes, but they’ll still learn that improvisation is a part of music. I want them to know that they have a voice that can be fun, that they can sing at church, or go to a concert and sing along, and enjoy themselves. What do you believe is the future of music education in Indiana? I’m most inspired by the educators I see coming through my programs at DePaul and Anderson. They get really fired up, and they give up four weekends out of the year to come to workshops and broaden their experience because they want to do what we do, they want to really make an impact on their kids. And when other teachers in the school see it, they appreciate the value of good music education. I see a lot of passion in the lower levels, and that passion is going to give the middle schools and high schools really fertile soil to work with down the line. It’s very encouraging! •
What got you into music education? I always loved music as a child. I played horn as a girl, and loved playing in orchestras and in band. When I went to Ohio University to be a part of their huge band program, I just fell in love with the idea of music education as a career, so that became my focus. Over the years after graduating, I came in and out of the profession, before eventually finding myself in the Washington, D.C. area and ready to get back into the classroom. It was then that I decided to start renewing my own education, beginning with studies in Orff-Schulwerk, and eventually getting my master’s in the Kodaly method. Today, I cobble all of those methodologies together in my classroom at Cherry Tree Elementary.
SCHOOL OF MUSIC
2017 Undergraduate Audition Dates Friday, January 20, 2–8 p.m. Saturday, February 11, 9 a.m.–5 p.m. (voice and keyboard only)
Sunday, February 12, 1–8 p.m. (winds/strings/percussion only)
Monday, February 20, noon–8 p.m. Application Deadline: Friday, January 6 To prepare for your audition, please review guidelines at bsu.edu/music/auditions.
Bachelor’s Degrees Music Composition Music Education Music Media Production Music Performance Music Performance with Jazz Concentration Master’s/Doctoral Degrees* Conducting Music Composition Music Education Music History and Musicology Music Theory Performance Performance, Woodwind Emphasis Piano Chamber Music/Accompanying Piano Performance and Pedagogy Artist Diploma in Music Performance* *Graduate auditions are handled on an individual basis.
New Program This Fall The School of Music will launch a certificate in entrepreneurial music program at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. The certificate can be completed in tandem with a student’s degree program and provides students with a safe environment to take creative risks, develop entrepreneurial and networking skills, and learn from successful artists. 8
to Bringing Composition Standards into the Ensemble Classroom At each grade level, there are many important touchpoints in music education. From the basics of performance to rudimentary music appreciation, each lesson brings new opportunities to round out our students as musicians. Perhaps one of the most difficult concepts to introduce and build upon is composition. We took a look at Indiana’s standards for composition in music education, and we asked two educators how they work composition into their lessons. From simple exercises to complex projects and the new technologies available to manage them, we learned a lot about what it takes to instill a healthy proficiency in composition while sticking to rigorous ensemble schedules. Indiana’s Composition Standards If you dive into Indiana’s written music education standards, you’ll see that they’re organized as “Literacy Standards for Music,” and much of the standards feel very similar to those for the language arts, with a specific focus on comprehension and communication. First comes the ability to read sheet music, which by grade 12 should be exhaustive. And while the standards don’t have much to say specifically about each grade’s work in the way of composition, it’s helpful to think of composition as the next step in reading comprehension; putting those reading skills to work through composition will only help to reinforce them, and should also provide some valuable structure to those students interested in experimentation and improvisation. Finding the Right Time for Composition Exercises Ben Waltz, West Lafayette Jr/Sr High School, has taken this literary connection to heart, and sees composition and similar arranging lessons as opportunities to change things up in the classroom. “I find that in my choral program, there is a wide range of interest and experience with composition and arranging,” said Ben. “As a class activity, I often use some middle school or elementary-level general music activities as a change of pace. In particular, there are a few Orff lessons
I use based on poetry in the days immediately following concerts, or during the dreaded week before a vacation.” In addition to these fun classroom exercises, Ben also makes room in his programs for his older students who show a strong interest in creating original compositions of their own. “On the more advanced end, I have students doing original compositions and arrangements as side projects, and I feature them in concerts or contests when possible.” Offering Structure and Tools for Success When we spoke with Sean Patrick, Orchestra Director and Music Department Chair at Goshen Middle School, he immediately acknowledged how difficult it can be to incorporate some of the less visible standards of music education (like composition) into classroom work, and especially into already full ensemble rehearsal schedules. Between in-depth composition projects in the third trimester and some shorter, four-to-eight-measure composition practices sprinkled throughout the year, Sean finds that structure is absolutely necessary for effective composition education. “I think some of the important aspects of incorporating composition into the ensemble classroom are to keep these assignments well structured, attainable in length and rigor, and for the students to compose within their performance abilities,” Sean said. “By asking students to compose within their own performance abilities, they are able to perform what they are writing and become self-aware of issues with string crossing, bow directions, and poor melodic choices that they may not grasp through writing alone, or even as played by computer software.” Speaking of computers, Sean is also a proponent of technology and software tools as a way of helping make composition even more accessible to students at every level. “We are teaching in a wonderful time to integrate composition into our classrooms as many schools throughout the state are implementing 1:1 technology standards and more of our students have access to a greater amount and sophistication of technology than ever before. Whether we are using Finale, Sibelius, MuseScore, Noteflight, or a program independent of notation like Garage Band, our students have a wealth of opportunities to create music and hear their music performed back to them instantly, allowing them to delve deeper, reflect, and refine their compositions. The rewards of this process encourage our students to independently continue their growth and take ownership of that aspect of their music education.” •
THE TEACHER AS TECHNICIAN:
INSTRUMENT UPKEEP TIPS FROM THE
Music education is by no means a cheap endeavor. And while most experts agree that the per-student cost of most music programs lies somewhere around $187, many teachers are faced with tightening budgets and shrinking discretionary funds. With instruments costing anywhere from $600 to $1,500 each, the frequency with which educators are forced to purchase replacement instruments can really make or break their budgets. Of course, music can’t happen without those instruments, and students aren’t shy about putting such valuable equipment through the ringer. With this in mind, we spoke to Kelly Fallon, Instrument Repair Technician at Indiana State University, and Dave Helms, owner of the Muncie Music Center, to learn more about what educators at every level can do to keep their stock of instruments in good shape for years to come. From basic upkeep tips, to some quick fixes teachers can perform themselves, to sure signs it’s time to call a professional, here’s what our experts had to share. Basic Upkeep The biggest step an educator can take to extend the life of their instruments is to keep them all well-lubricated. “A lot of times when instruments sit over time, the oils can dry up and create a tar-like substance,” said Fallon. “You have the keys plated with nickel, you have steel rods running through woodwinds, and the steel tries to protect itself against corrosive qualities of the nickel, and that’s when the patina forms.” Along those lines, keeping cases clean will save a surprisingly large amount of headaches down the road. Regularly inspecting cases and vacuuming them out can stop insects from making a comfortable home where they
don’t belong. In Indiana specifically, moth larvae are very common, and they like to show up in cases that aren’t well maintained. Those moths, in turn, will eat components of the instruments; moths love to eat felts, bowstrings, pads, or anything else organic inside a case. According to Helms, good instrument upkeep comes back to the students themselves. “Make sure that a basic part of teaching a new instrument is upkeep,” Helms said. Make sure that each student gets some personal attention when it comes to the maintenance of their own unique instrument, so they know how to take good care of their equipment. Just like any guitar student knows how to change their strings, brass players should understand what a good mouthpiece looks like, or how to at least diagnose very simple issues or irregularities. “I like to think of instrument maintenance like a dissection in a science classroom,” Helms said. “In that setting, you have a control, and you have your own sample to work on. If you’re having trouble making sure your instrument is in good working order, compare it to a control model you know is on point. Teach your students to work through the control and their own instrument to find any potential problems.” Quick Repairs and Maintenance Those potential problems from everyday use can add up quickly if left unattended. In Helms’ experience, it’s simple repairs that make up the majority of repair requests he receives. “The most common issues are that there’s a spring off, or a pad off, or an octave key is messed up,” Helms said. Fortunately, with the right set of tools, most music AUTUMN 2016
• • • • • • • •
A set of screwdrivers Pliers An effective key A pad slick A case of felts or synthetics Valve oil Neoprene tubing for horns Bobcat mouthpiece puller
teachers should be able to take care of those smaller issues themselves. One specific example Helms lifts up is that of the spring hook. With a set of pliers and a lighter, you can easily heat up keys and adjust pads and put springs back on that have popped off, without ever needing to call a professional. Fallon added that valve alignments are relatively simple, and can go a long way toward a long-lasting brass line. “Some technicians get a little touchy about it, but as long as your felts are the proper thickness, your valves will pretty much be aligned,” Fallon said. “We buy a pack of 100 felts each year for about $24, and they seem to fit all of our brass instruments well.” By replacing felts on ISU’s entire brass line every year, Fallon has been able to keep their marching brass in top shape for over 20 years. Finally, there are a few really easy fixes anyone can do. Replacing key corks: just find the correct thickness of cork and glue it in there. Brass mouthpieces: keep an eye on the plating and make sure it doesn’t wear too much. Raw brass on raw brass can lead to a patina forming, which will cause the parts to stick.
Calling in the Experts While some fixes should be manageable for educators of any experience level, there are some circumstances that absolutely warrant some outside help from an expert technician. Fallon said, “My first rule is simple: if it involves saxophones, oboes, or bassoons, just leave it alone. There’s no standard there, so what would be a 10-minute fix for an experienced tech might become a very complicated fix if incorrectly handled.” For Helms, a similar line exists when anything comes unsoldered. “If something falls off, don’t pick up the soldering iron and try to replace it yourself,” said Helms. He also added that anytime a teacher starts feeling unsure or uncomfortable with something, it’s better to save the work for a professional. “Brass is basically plumbing,” said Helms. “Either air goes through, or it doesn’t, and it can be a little easier to tell when something isn’t working right. But woodwinds can be much more complicated, and especially if you’re talking about other peoples’ property, you really don’t want to do any more damage.” For both of our experts, it comes down to not forcing anything. Not forcing yourself to do something you’re not sure about, and not forcing parts that aren’t doing what you expected them to do. “If you feel like you’re pulling too hard on a mouthpiece, just stop,” encouraged Fallon. •
© Annett Vauteck
The Music Educator’s Toolbox Our experts recommend that music educators keep the following tools on hand for quick fixes:
Instrument Repair Horror Stories With so many instruments going through their shops, our experts have seen it all. We asked them to share a repair story that really stood out.
“A couple of students were bored, and they were playing around with a trumpet. They decided it would be fun to turn it up and drop nickels into the bell, like one of those donation funnels. The nickel was just the right size that it rolled right down and got completely stuck inside.” – Dave Helms
“I was working in a shop when I got a phone call from a friend, who was a band director. They told me they were outside practicing, and something had gotten stuck in a student’s Sousaphone and they couldn’t figure out what, or how to get it out. I took a look, and it turns out the warm instrument made an inviting home for a snake. We had to call the DNR out to help with that one.” – Kelly Fallon
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LEARN MORE AT NAMMFOUNDATION.ORG/IMEA 12
10/14/16 10:20 AM
BY DANIELLE STEELE
TRAINING THE TRANSGENDER SINGER The purpose of this article is to provide suggestions to choral directors who are in the process of assisting a high school- or college-age transgender singer navigate their singing voice during the early phases of hormonal transition. Recommendations are based solely on the experience of the author, working with the students of the author. This article is intended to provide helpful insights for both teacher and student, not an exhaustive commentary on pedagogy for transgender singers. The author makes no claim to having a comprehensive medical understanding of the complexities of hormonal transition. All observations are based on empirical research collected by the author for the purposes of assisting the author’s own singers, and to contribute to the growing national conversation surrounding the topic of transgender singers in the choral classroom. Although this is an intimidating undertaking for student and teacher alike, don’t be discouraged if you don’t know where to start. This is a journey that the teacher and singer take together. Everyone is vulnerable and a little bit nervous, no one quite knows what to do, and there’s no set of best practices in place. Patience, kindness, compassion, and creativity will be your most useful tools. Be open and learn as you go. Be willing to educate yourself. If you get something wrong, admit it, apologize, and come back the next day with a positive attitude. You can do this, your students believe in you, and more importantly, they need you.
Here are some suggestions for getting started. When a singer comes to you and outs themself as transgender, let them know that your voice studio or choral program is a safe and welcoming environment. Assure them that you will respect what name they want to be called, what gender pronoun they want to use, and that you won’t out them to the rest of studio/choir without their permission. Don’t make comments on how well you feel they present as their preferred gender. They’re going through a harrowing emotional journey. One day, your singer might show up in heels and panty hose, the next day, sweat pants. You’re here to take care of their voice. Let them figure out their presentation. Do not try to talk the singer out of transitioning simply because you can’t afford to lose a bass, or because you like them as tenor, or because it will mean difficulty for you in rebalancing the choir. Do encourage them to find a voice that resonates with their gender identity that is also healthy for them to produce. If that means you have a bass who goes by she/her pronouns, fantastic. If that means you assist a singer in discovering their falsetto so they can transition to alto, wonderful. You’ve gained an alto. If a transgender man doesn’t want to give up their upper register and still sings soprano while dressed in a tux, then you have a soprano in a tux that goes by he/him pronouns. Your they/them singer who desperately wants to sing tenor but doesn’t have the low notes? Be willing to sit and talk
with them and help them find the healthiest low range they can sustain. Be open to hearing their thoughts. Take them seriously if they tell you they are experiencing gender dysphoria related to their singing voice. Let your students know that you are their advocate and you will assist them in finding the answers. If you are a director who is encountering your first transgender singer in your choral program, one-on-one vocal training can be a crucial component of a singer’s successful vocal transition. During a time when their voice might not cooperate, your investment in them can mean the difference between the singer feeling isolated or feeling welcome and accepted in the group. Here are some suggestions for assisting early-transition transgender singers who have begun hormones as they explore their changing voice. Note: Understand that a singer may experience dysphoria when they hear their own voice. If the voice does not align with the gender they wish to present, this could be emotionally difficult for them. If the lesson needs to stop temporarily or even entirely that day, be open to that possibility. If a singer needs to leave rehearsal to collect themselves on a day when their voice isn’t cooperating, allow them some space. 1) Explore the limits of their range in ways that are informative for both of you. Where is their voice currently? Where might it go? Encourage the singer to produce sound healthily and without judgment. The singer might have a range of a sixth at that time or they might have an octave and a half but the sound is scratchy and unreliable. That’s OK. This is part of what happens. Frame these exercises as “making sound” or “making noise,” rather than “singing.” There tends to be a concept of what a singing “should” sound like. Transgender singers’ voices are unique and in a state of flux. Falling into the trap of what their voice “should” sound like early on will impede your progress. “Making sound” can be done through slides on an [u], “sirens,” and exercises that build awareness of the various resonators. Explore speaking, humming and slides before sung vocalises. Exercises that build awareness of the voice and control of the minute muscles involved in singing will empower the singer as they move forward with their training. Singers need to feel where certain parts of their voice “live” in their bodies, and feel the sound moving freely before they can embark on the path of purposefully changing their voice. A theater warm-up exercise used to bring awareness to the chest, mixed and head voice, described below, is something I use in my studio and choral rehearsals on a regular basis. a) Have a singer place their hand on their chest. Have them begin phonation on the lowest com-
fortable note they can produce without pushing or growling. Have them move upward and downward on slides utilizing [a e i o u] in the lower portion of their register. Have them pay attention to feeling vibration in their chest and which vowels feel most resonant to them. Have them do the exercise again and slide up until they no longer feel vibration coming through their hand. Identify approximately where they lose sensation and find that note on the piano. This is the “end” of their chest voice. b) Have them place their hands about eight inches in front of their face, palms facing inward, pinky side of hands touching. Cup the hands slightly. The hands will act as a baffle and reflect sound back to the singer. Have the singer begin in their middle range, above the identified note which “ends” their chest voice, again utilizing [a e i o u] vowels and sliding up and down within the range of about an octave. Have them identify which vowel sounds most resonant to them as those vowels are reflected back by their hands. Experiment with different mouth shapes on different vowels. On an [a] vowel, they could imagine biting into an apple. On an [o] vowel, they can imagine having hot potatoes in their mouth. On an [i] vowel, they imagine they are smelling something particularly fragrant as they inhale the [i] shape through a relaxed, open mouth. c) Drop the hands. Next, have the singer repeat phrases in their head voice with an overly-nasal, forward placement such as, “My mom made me M&Ms on the moon,” and “Nice guys fly to Miami,” or “I’ll get you my pretty.” Have them then do the reverse: be overly woofy and back. Then have them return to the forward-placed phrases. d) Last, have the singer do a sharp intake of breath and pop open their soft palate. You can achieve this by asking the singers to inhale a backward “k” sound. Immediately follow this by saying [ki] from the highest pitch possible and sliding slowly down on the vowel, allowing any “clunks” to naturally happen. Do this once more, this time trying to smooth over the “clunks” by sliding even more slowly and intentionally. 2) Exercises that occur on one pitch will help build awareness of placement and resonance and can still serve other purposes. For example, singing “The tip of the tongue, the teeth, the lips” on one pitch can be both a diction and a stabilization exercise. You can also utilize phrases you used during the previous exercises, such as “Momma made me mash my M&Ms.” Pick AUTUMN 2016
phrases that require resonant consonants [m] and [n] or tongue twisters that require excellent diction (“sit on a potato pan, Otis,” or “red leather, yellow leather”). Additionally, you can move through a vowel sequence (ex: [a e i o u]) on one pitch and have the singer report to you which vowels are easiest and most resonant, as well as least resonant. 3) Don’t be afraid to move slowly. Transgender singers often have trouble matching pitch or singing consistently in one octave when they are early in transitioning. This does not mean your singer is tone deaf or will be unable to match pitch forever. It does mean they need time to feel their “new” voice and understand how it relates to the instrument they used previously. Be willing to alter time-tested vocalises you use for cisgender singers on a regular basis. Instead of exercises that move quickly or span the range of a perfect fifth, use exercises that span a minor or major third. Again, I advocate the use of slides on a vowel that you and the singer have identified as being free and resonant. Encourage focus in the sound rather than breathiness. When exercises of a third feel more stable, move on to a perfect fourth or fifth. In the beginning, using stepwise motion in vocalises is most effective. The first several weeks or months of a transgender singer’s training can consist of vocalises and breath work. Encourage your singer to keep a journal in which they track changes in their voice, its tone quality, and the range in which they can comfortably sing. 4) If tackling solo repertoire, begin with shorter, simpler songs. Remember, you are retraining a singer’s voice and ears. Even a more experienced singer needs time to adjust their expectations. Perhaps begin by using the Vaccai singing method to train singers to identify the new feeling of certain intervals in the voice and to encourage accuracy. Adjust the key as necessary as the singer moves through their transition. Sight-reading exercises that use stepwise motion, such as those distributed by Masterworks, are beneficial. They are a wonderful resource spanning Baroque to Romantic style examples, are one page long, and can be performed on vowels or syllables such as “nah.” Additionally, have the songs your students are singing available in multiple keys (this is where having the high and low key of favorite folk songs and art song collections comes in handy). How often should I work one-on-one with my transitioning singer? When a singer begins transitioning, weekly voice lessons are recommended. It is simple to take the modified vocalises from the voice lesson and incorporate some of them
into a choral rehearsal. This allows your singer to immediately transfer their training from lessons to the choral setting. It also allows them to hear themselves in the context of their section, and it helps them to feel welcome and capable, having already become familiar with the exercises. What if my singer has a limited range? Can they still sing in my choir? Yes. Solutions which require a little extra time and energy are relatively simple, however. Place the singer in the section that best matches where they can healthily phonate. Encourage them to hum rather than full-out sing if their voice is feeling uncontrollable, or they are having trouble staying in one register. Be willing to rewrite vocal lines to accommodate their limited range. This might mean they are singing a combination of alto and tenor parts temporarily, but as long as they are within the harmonic structure of the piece, this shouldn’t be a problem. If a singer’s range begins to change rapidly, be open to moving them to a new voice part, or alter the specially-written part you’ve created for them. What if a singer has trouble matching pitch? This depends on the severity of the pitch matching issue. It might mean they sing in the choir, but also need oneon-one sessions with you or a private teacher to solidify pitch. It might be that it is best for the choir member to sit out a semester, while studying voice privately, to get over the initial “hump.” If they like, it might mean the singer becomes more active as a choral assistant, helping with things like distributing music and uniforms, or designing some group-building activities for the choir. Find any way you can to keep them involved, give them a place of support and community, and allow them to be themselves in a safe environment. What if my singer doesn’t want to be outed at the concert by being obviously dressed differently from their sectionmates? There are two options here. Be willing to choose a gender-neutral option for your choir and have everyone in the same outfit. This can be done tastefully with black pants and a black dress shirt. If your choir is more casual, every student in jeans and their matching choir t-shirt will do the trick. A third option is to sing mixed or in pods (having two or three sopranos together, two or three basses together, etc., but essentially singing mixed). Singing mixed eliminates visual cues to your audience. If your student does want to dress as their preferred gender and sing in their section (e.g., a bass wearing a dress), let them. Allow this to be their choice. You do not have to live in their body for the rest of your life. They do. Be willing to defend their choice and your support of it to parents.
What kind of voice teacher do I recommend for my transitioning student? First, know the private teachers in your area and make sure they are an ally. Singers often develop close relationships with their private teachers. You want to know that this will be a safe, healthy, nurturing relationship, where the singer is free to be who they are and explore their new voice. With permission from your student, be willing to make a few phone calls on behalf of your student. Transgender women who wish to sing in their upper register benefit from similar training one would use with a countertenor. Transgender men who wish to sing in their lower register and are on testosterone generally see a lowering of their voice fairly consistently over a period of months. Having the singer work with someone who is comfortable and familiar with the changing voice (such as a middle school director who works with boys going through puberty) is helpful. What if my other students have a problem having a transgender person in the choir? This is the perfect time to begin dismantling gender bias among your students. You can discuss relevant topics such as bullying and prevention of hate crimes. You can talk about what it means to be an effective ally. Taking a portion of a class to do a listening activity where they listen to singers like Macy Gray, Michael Jackson, Tracy Chapman, Justin Beiber (among countless others) and discuss the unique qualities of these singing voices is a great way to open the discussion about voices that don’t sound how we might expect given the appearance of the person singing. While it is impossible to dismantle all the bias that might exist in your classroom (including your own!), you can emphasize rehearsal etiquette and professionalism and ask that your students exemplify common courtesy. Beginning and sustaining the conversation is important. These issues cannot simply be addressed once and put away. Ongoing building of communication and acceptance in your classroom will make your classroom safe for all your students, not only your transgender ones. In summary: • be respectful and open toward your transgender student by using their preferred name and gender pronouns, • be supportive and begin to actively build a safe classroom environment for them by purposefully dismantling gender bias and preventing bullying among your students, • educate yourself and your students about what it means to be an effective ally, • be willing to take a little extra time to work one-on-one or help them find a voice teacher.
Be helpful in finding ways for them to engage and be part of the community if their voice isn’t functioning reliably. While you won’t know all the answers or get everything perfect, being a part of creating positive change will do wonders for your transgender students and your community as a whole. •
Transgender Singing Voice Conference When: January 20 - 22, 2017 Where: Earlham College The purpose of this conference is to facilitate the growing national conversation surrounding best practices in vocal technique and educational policy regarding transgender and gender non-conforming students in the music classroom. This two-and-a-half day conference, at Earlham College, from January 20 - 22, 2017, will consist of training sessions for educators currently in the field, music education majors, allies and students, panel discussions on important issues related to safe space, anti-bullying initiatives, and helping educators and their students erase the bias surrounding transgender issues. The conference will offer resources and training for those in the field of choral conducting and vocal pedagogy as it relates to transgender singers. There will be opportunities for networking and conversations regarding new directions for research and curriculum development. Proposed keynote speakers are leaders in the emerging field of transgender vocal pedagogy and transgender choral initiatives, among them Earlham alumna Sandi Hammond of Boston’s Butterfly Music Transgender Chorus, Lindsey Deaton of the LA Transgender Chorus, composer and activist Mari Valverde, and voice teacher and researcher Danielle Steele of Earlham College. Presentations will be made by the ACLU, Freedom Indiana, the Indiana Transgender Network, Indiana Youth Group, and TREES (Transgender Resource, Education and Enrichment Services). Among the events, there will be sessions on the transgender voice and hormone therapy, observable master classes of voice teachers with transgender singers, and a reading session on inclusive programming. This event is sponsored in part by the Earlham College Choral Program, the Earlham College Center for Social Justice, the Earlham College Center for Global Health, CoLab, Earlham’s newest space focused on highlighting collaborative inquiry on significant national and global challenges in the 21st century, and the Indiana Music Educators Association. Danielle Steele serves as assistant director of choral activities at Earlham College.
USING MULTIPHONICS TO HELP CLARINET STUDENTS IN THE ALTISSIMO RANGE
few weeks ago, I was working with some junior high students. There were four classes total, with a common thread that tied those classes together. They were working on different pieces for band, but all claimed to have the same problem: playing the high notes. Over the years I have heard some bizarre solutions, everything from raising the placement of the reed on the mouthpiece to curling the toes, in order to reach the note. Although the position of the toes has little to do with the altissimo range on the clarinet, the position of the tongue has everything to do with it. Determining there is a problem One of my past students was working on the finger exercises found in the Rubank Advanced Method, Volume II. She complained at every lesson, and when asked why, she stated that the high notes scared her. Beginning clarinetists tend to be afraid of the high notes, which can be a problem in more ways than one. When the student is apprehensive,
they tense up the embouchure, which results in what I will refer to as â€œbiting.â€? This can be visually identified with the bottom jaw clenching and raising, as one would see while chewing food. The problem can also be identified audibly by hearing a sudden squeak. Another way for the teacher to identify that an improper tongue position is being used is the appearance of a sub-tone. In most instruction books, when introducing the register key, the students are given a familiar note and then asked to add the register key. Most of the time during the early trials of this exercise, the second note will more closely resemble a minor third (depending on what the first note is) above the first note, instead of a twelfth. That pseudo minor third is the sub-tone that will be heard. If this happens with a student, it is an audible clue that the tongue is in an improper position for playing in the altissimo range of the clarinet.
can use with the clarinet. When the tongue is raised to the proper position, it acts as though it was the thumb covering up a portion of the hose end. By doing this, the stream of air through the clarinet will have the same reaction as the water moving faster in the garden hose. I have witnessed many directors telling their clarinetists that they should blow harder to reach the high notes. This is partially true. The air speed that is determined by the diaphragm should be constant. It is only changed by the raising of the tongue for the higher notes. When a student is told to blow harder on higher notes, it also tells them that they can decrease the air pressure on lower notes that are easier to reach. This will most likely affect the intonation of the lower notes. Also, if the student does maintain a good air pressure for the lower notes, and really goes “all in” on the high notes, the high notes will have a very bad sound and will never be able to be comfortably played at all dynamics. Air speed should also be a constant. Even though the student may be doing better with tongue
© Kenneth C. Zirkel
“Garden hosing” the problem Although biting and the producing of sub-tones will have different results, there is a common solution for both problems. Squeaking and sub-tones are both products of poor tongue position, and can easily be corrected with proper guidance. In my years of teaching, a number of students have given me a funny look when I mention just how important tongue position is. Many students are under the impression that the tongue’s only role is to articulate notes. Whenever I give my students the “tongue position lesson,” I always begin by asking if they have ever sprayed anyone with a garden hose. Of course, the normal response is yes, followed by a funny story of how they were grounded. When asked how they squirted the person, the answer is “I covered the end of the hose with my thumb.” At an early age, children figure out that when you close off part of the end of the hose, the water will travel faster and harder. I know that there is a scientific reason for this (probably the Venturi effect), but I am only concerned with the analogy I
position, they may still show some biting in their playing. I was performing an unaccompanied piece for a master class one time, and the only thing the instructor told me was that I was biting during some of the pitches, causing them to go sharp. It was then that she asked me to play a section of the piece while using a double lip embouchure. A double lip embouchure is similar to that used on double reed instruments, with both the top and bottom lips placed between the teeth and the mouthpiece. After playing a few phrases with the new embouchure, I found that, although I felt I had little control, my sound and intonation were greatly improved. By using a double lip embouchure, you are discouraged from any biting because of the pain that is caused when biting. I asked the instructor if she suggested switching to a double lip embouchure, which some clarinetists do, and she replied that she would only suggest using the double lip only to get the feel of not biting. Proper tongue placement Being very close to a guitarist who also teaches, we often discuss our private students. Although we have always known that each instrument possesses its own challenges in teaching, we have agreed that one of the advantages of string pedagogy is the ability to view everything that is going on with a student. On clarinet, there are some aspects that teachers can view, such as finger placements or biting. Even though it is impossible to see where a student’s tongue position is while they are playing, we are still responsible for giving direction for correct tongue position, if we want that student to progress. When I first started teaching, I always struggled with how to explain what should be going on inside of the mouth. Most textbooks have
horrible pictures that normally leave me more confused than I was before reading. Many times, I have made a fool of myself by trying to explain with my hand in my mouth, pointing out what should be going on. After trial and error, I finally discovered something that really worked. This method is set around the letter “E”, as in the word “beat.” While pronouncing this sound, the tongue naturally moves to where it should be while playing the higher notes. Start by asking the student to pronounce the letter “E.” By having the student pronounce the letter several times, the position of the tongue can really be ingrained into the student’s head and muscle memory. The next step is to have them place the clarinet in their mouth while the tongue is raised. Try having the student pronounce the letter, freeze their tongue, and then place the clarinet in their mouth. The results will vary from student to student. Some will raise their tongue too much, but most will not raise their tongue enough to produce a good sounding note. At first it will feel really strange to the student, but over time it will become very natural and produce great results. Exercises The term given when the clarinet produces two or more tones simultaneously is multiphonics. It was not until my junior year of college that I began to discover these cool new sounds on the clarinet. It was that year that I chose to do a lecture/recital on extended technique for clarinet. From that point on, I have been hooked on these exciting sounds that can be produced on clarinet. However, until I started working on my Master’s degree, I still believed that the only purpose for multiphonics was the cool sound effects. I learned that year that they can also be a great tool for clarinet pedagogy. There are two types of multiAUTUMN 2016
phonics for clarinet: those that utilize new fingerings and those that require a change in embouchure, tongue, and/ or air pressure. In this exercise the student will be using a combination of the two. If you recall earlier in the article, I was describing sub-tones. For this exercise, the first step is to produce these sub-tones. Begin by having the student play a high c#’’, but without using the register key (see figure 1). Have the student aim for a low, airy note that will sound like an eb. It will take very little air and the tongue should be completely relaxed. The next step of this exercise is to attempt to play the actual high c#’’. (It will be just a little flat because of the absence of the register vent.). In order to do this, the tongue will need to rise into the “E” position. BE sure to take careful notice of the jaw, to make sure the student is not biting to reach the high c#’’.
The final step in this exercise is to actually play a multiphonic. First, play the lower sub-tone, and then slightly raise the tongue in order to allow the higher note to come out while the lower note continues. In the early stages, the
higher note will pop out quite easily. The student’s goal should be to have a smooth transition from sub-tone to multiphonic and then to higher note. After mastering the c#’’, the student should continue the exercise in the same manner on d’’, eb’’, e’’, f’’, and f#’’ (see figure 2). One should note that, as the notes go higher, the exercises will become more difficult. The reason that this exercise requires the absence of the register vent is similar to the on-deck circle in baseball. Frequently, when a batter goes to the on-deck circle, they put a weight onto their bat. The reason for the weight is to make the batter’s box seem easier. The same is true for this exercise. When the student plays these altissimo tones without the use of a register vent, it is like the weight on the bat. It makes the notes harder to reach, and forces the tongue to work harder than normal. However, when the student then moves to the batter’s box, the altissimo range will seem much easier. •
Jeremy Wohletz teaches woodwinds, music theory, music history, and music technology at Dickinson State University in North Dakota.
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THE SIX-WEEK CIRCUS:
THE HOOSIER TRACK MARCHING BAND TRADITION To outsiders, the Indiana State Fair seems to pop up out of nowhere. When opening day comes around, the fairgrounds look just as guests left them a year earlier; regular attendees know exactly where to find their favorite stall for elephant ears, or where their favorite animals are hiding around the grounds’ outside track ring. But to those who show up to make the fair what it is, that first long day comes after many others spent preparing. Some work to grow prize-winning vegetables. Others raise horses for the shows, or spend months crafting bizarre and tempting recipes-on-a-stick to draw the crowds. For students at over 40 schools throughout Indiana, however, this first day of the fair represents something that’s different from your standard fair faire, but involves just as much hard work and dedication and history. That’s because it’s Band Day, and it’s the championships for the unique Indiana musical tradition that is the track band. Over the course of a lightning-fast, six-week summer season, these bands have designed, memorized, and perfected six-minute routines that aren’t so dissimilar from what you’d find on the field any given Friday night in the fall, or at your standard field marching band competitions. The difference, though, is that these performances are confined to the horse track that runs in front of the grandstand at the fairgrounds: about half the workable space of a football field. David Holscher of the Central Indiana Track Show Association (CITSA) has been a long-time enthusiast and supporter of the track show tradition. As the webmaster of indianatrackmarchingbands.com, he’s the state’s ultimate expert and historian for the phenomenon.
“This began as a simple parade around the grandstand track,” says Holscher. “Eventually the parade moved to downtown Indianapolis, then back to the fairgrounds, but in any case there wasn’t any evaluation, any stopping, any real performance of any kind.” The contest as we know it today got its real start in 1947, when bands began introducing simple, three-minute performances to the normal parade route. Over the next few decades, these performances grew bigger and better, drawing larger crowds¬– and also increasingly larger cash prizes. “At its biggest, Band Day had 90 or so bands competing,” adds Holscher. “Back then, full band competitions weren’t very big. These track marching band shows had the biggest draw.” By the 1960s, CITSA developed the competition’s current format, which involves preliminary performances throughout the day, with top bands competing in the finals into the evening hours. When ISSMA formed and began introducing fall field competitions, many bands opted to focus their efforts there to benefit from the bigger space on the football field. That marked a decline in track band participation, and by 1988 the total field of participants was down to only 24. For many schools and individuals, however, track shows have never lost their importance. Doug Fletcher, Director of Instrumental Music at Winchester Community High School, has been participating in the track shows since he was in high school band at Madison Heights in Anderson in the 1970s. Fletcher remains involved in track shows because of the flexibility the summer season offers him. “Many high school bands dedicate their full fall semester to the field AUTUMN 2016
shows, but we don’t do that. I find my students to be more focused in the summer, and they aren’t torn in a lot of the different directions they are in the fall.” For Fletcher, Band Day is the big show. It’s his program’s main competitive event, and the many competitions that come in the six weeks leading up to the championships are all the preparation his students get. “CITSA puts on these early competitions at Jay County, Winchester, Noblesville, Centerville, and Muncie Central,” says Fletcher. “Some of those competitions take place on football fields, and we just cone off half the field lengthwise.” It also doesn’t hurt that the prize money for the Band Day competition remains substantial; Fletcher says that taking the $4,000 first-place prize can basically take care of his fundraising goals for the year. This, combined with the shortened, schedule-friendly season, makes the track marching band competition an attractive option as schools look to focus their programs to help their students make the most of every activity they pursue.
And other schools, especially in rural areas throughout the state, are starting to take notice. Derrick Braswell is the Director of Bands at Blue River Valley Schools in Mt. Summit, where students have only been participating in Band Day for two years. The district is particularly small; in 2016 the school graduated 40 students. “We are such a small school,” says Braswell. “We’re sharing our kids with the baseball team, with cross country and tennis and golf. The kids we have are involved with absolutely everything, and it has been hard in the past for kids to be involved with band as well as extra-curriculars.” Now, thanks to the track show competitions, Braswell has a new option to give his kids a valuable and challenging competitive experience, while also freeing them up for the other activities they love throughout the school year. “The biggest adjustment for us was the fact that before, when we did the ISSMA field shows, our program was six months long, June through November,” Braswell adds. “Now we start in June and we’re done by Band Day in early August. So we try to fit the same amount of activity in six weeks that we used to fit in six months.” Braswell has found, though, that his students are up to the challenge. As of this writing, he reports that their band was only seven days into their season, but had already learned ¾ of their show and were actively adding new elements and polishing the old. In a six-month season, they wouldn’t even be halfway to that same point. When Blue River Valley takes the track on August 5, 2016, they’ll be a relative newcomer amongst schools like Noblesville and Richmond, who have been consistently
competing for 50 years or more. They’ll take their bow at the end of the day, while some schools (like Franklin Central, who have only been competing on Band Day for three years) use the competition as a springboard into their fall season to get their students in front of judges and ready to ride it out to ISSMA state finals in the fall. “This competition has everything you want for your students,” Braswell says. “It makes our kids push themselves, to work hard for a big goal, and it teaches them valuable life lessons. Plus, it’s fun to take the whole band down to the fair for the day.” So next year, make sure to visit the Indiana State Fairgrounds on opening day. Head straight for the cart with the best corndogs. Grab a bag of kettle corn and a lemon shake-up, and then snatch a seat in the grandstands. Six minutes at a time, take in another time-honored Indiana State Fair tradition and see some of the best that Indiana high school music has to offer in a setting you simply won’t find anywhere else in the world. “Even some of our judges haven’t heard of this before,” says Holscher. “You’ll be surprised when you see what these bands can do.” •
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EVERY STUDENT WONDER AND EXCELLENCE: SUCCEEDS ACT EDUCATORS ON IMEA’S FESTIVAL What you need to know & CLINIC PROGRAM
As we approach the one-year anniversary of President Obama signing into law the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), Indiana music educators can begin to see what implementation might look like in their state, and can participate in what will occur regarding ESSA in their very own schools. What is ESSA? The Every Student Succeeds Act (https://www.congress. gov/114/plaws/publ95/PLAW-114publ95.pdf) , or ESSA, is our nation’s federal K-12 education law. ESSA is the new title given this law, the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, which celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2015. The prior version of this act was named No Child Left Behind. In our nation, public education is governed state by state. Federal education laws support supplemental dollars for education. This act, in particular, was created to help provide additional funding for schools supporting children in poverty. When people refer to “Title I” schools, they are referring to schools receiving funding under this federal law – in particular, funding under title 1 or chapter 1 of the law. What is different under ESSA? ESSA is a very different federal law than No Child Left Behind (NCLB). Under NCLB, the U.S. Department of Education had much more authority over our nation’s public schools, particularly with regards to building accountability systems and labeling schools based on Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP). ESSA does away with AYP, and gives flexibility back to the states in terms of making decisions regarding accountability systems, teacher evaluation systems, teacher qualifications (no more Highly Qualified Teacher forms to fill out!), and how federal funds can be spent at the state and local level.
Highlights of what’s different or new under ESSA for music educators include: 1. A new definition of a well-rounded education which lists music as a separate subject area. Part of NAfME’s advocacy work for a quarter of a decade, music is now recognized for the first time in federal law. Well-rounded education replaces the phrase “core academic subjects” found in NCLB. 2. A new federal block grant, Title IV-A, available to districts, which must fund (at least in part) access to a well-rounded education, which includes music. 3. The phrase, a well-rounded education, occurs numerous times throughout the law, including in Title I-A, the part of the law which provides supplemental funds to schools serving children in poverty. This creates more opportunities for music to be supported by Title I than were possible under NCLB. In addition, more opportunities for professional development funded under ESSA, whether through Title I, Title II or Title IV, exist because of music being listed as part of a well-rounded education. 4. The ability of your state, Indiana, to add new metrics to its state accountability system. This is a requirement of the law – for states to add additional metrics to those dictated by the law. This flexibility means that music-friendly metrics could be included, such as access and participation rates in music programs in Indiana’s schools. Connecticut and New Jersey have already added this as part of their school report card systems (and in Connecticut’s case, as part of their new accountability system!).
1. Ask to be part of the needs assessment committees for your school and/or district for ESSA. All of the funding sources under ESSA require districts to create funding plans based on needs assessments and input from teachers. You can be part of this – even if you haven’t been in the past. Reach out to your district’s Title I coordinator, or check in with your principal, to see how you can get involved. 2. Coordinate a district-wide music education needs assessment to help prepare for your district’s Title IV-A plan. Remember that these are the new block funds, and they can support a well-rounded education, including music, beginning with the 2017-2018 school year. Lots of other subjects are part of a well-rounded education (it’s not just music!), so being prepared with what your needs are as a music community is smart and strategic! NAfME’s Council of Program Leaders developed the 2015 Opportunity-to-Learn Standards which can serve as a beginning place for your Title IV-A needs assessment. To learn more, visit this archived webinar from August, 2016: http://www. nafme.org/community/elearning/archived-webinars/ archived-webinar-otls-title-iv-lynn-tuttle-ronny-lau/
3. Share information on ESSA with your music education colleagues, and stay up to date on what’s happening by visiting NAfME’s “Everything ESSA” webpage. You can access the webpage at http://bit.ly/NCLBends. 4. Get active at the state and federal levels to support decision-makers as they create state level ESSA plans, and as they work to fund ESSA with federal appropriations. • IMEA is working in partnership with the Indiana Arts Education Network to provide public testimony about the importance of music education as the Indiana Department of Education holds stakeholder meetings across Indiana this fall. IMEA is also helping shape music and arts specific “asks” to be shared with the Department during these meetings. What can you do to help with this work? Get in touch with Lane at email@example.com to find out! •
NAfME is continuing to work on Capitol Hill to support full federal funding for Title IV-A – the new block grant part of ESSA. You can participate by writing to your Congressional delegation urging them to fully fund the block grant. To learn more, visit http://bit.ly/NAfMEgrassroots. •
© Christopher Futcher
What can I do as an Indiana music educator?
MARLA BUTKE, PH.D., OTTERBEIN UNIVERSITY
“MEANINGFUL MOVEMENT: DALCROZE EURHYTHMICS FOR ALL” What is Dalcroze Eurhythmics? Emile Jaques-Dalcroze (1865-1950), born in Switzerland, was a theory professor at the Geneva Conservatory. After careful observation of his students, Dalcroze concluded that while the students could be good musical technicians, they often did not hear or feel the nuances of the music. He then began having his students move through space, performing various movement activities to increase musicality. The approach involves the whole body, mind, and emotions by representing an integrated physical, intellectual, and emotional experience for the student. Rhythmic integrity and expressivity are at the heart of this approach. In the early stages of his eurhythmics teachings, Dalcroze would ask students to walk, conduct, and swing their arms to the beat of the music as they sang. These exercises improved the response time and accuracy in communication, as well as the coordination between the ear, nervous and muscular systems, and the mind. The whole body becomes the instrument and performs some aspect of the music through movement. The concept of time, energy and space in relation to eurhythmics is very significant. Time refers to duration and tempo. Energy comprises the weight, dynamics, and accentuation of the body in response to music. Space is in reference to the body’s relationship to itself and to others in terms of its physical placement. These three concepts are used to express movement and are recorded in the muscles as a kinesthetic image. This eurhythmics trio involves movement occurring in a specific time, with a certain amount of energy moving in space.
The Dalcroze approach also includes Rhythmic Solfège, or ear training. Dalcroze believed that students must learn sophisticated listening skills and develop “inner hearing.” What makes Rhythmic Solfège unique is that it is always combined with rhythm and movement, both locomotor and non-locomotor. Piano improvisation is considered the third component to the Dalcroze approach. A music teacher plays the piano to either invoke a movement response from the students or to respond to the students’ movement. The improvisations need not be complicated, but must clearly show the concept that is being taught and be musical. The philosophy of Dalcroze’s approach speaks to the importance of developing a more musical society. Dalcroze’s belief in the integration of the whole being has influenced the fields of general education, therapy, special education, and psychology as well. But it is the field of music education that will ever be changed and always indebted to the teachings of Emile Jaques-Dalcroze. Benefits of Dalcroze Eurhythmics Eurhythmics serves as a model for music and movement education in schools because this model offers active and creative music making for all children, not just the musically talented. Further, eurhythmics develops musicianship through singing, improvising, and purposeful and creative movement. Active music making is the core of this philosophy, supporting both the conceptual and affective development of children. Active learners develop a thorough, long-term understanding of the material and concepts they are studying. AUTUMN 2016
Basic Guidelines for Implementation
Eurhythmics contributes to the development of the individual beyond musical skills. This approach also has application and value in the following areas: •
Intellectual Value: People engaged in eurhythmics activities solve problems, predict, and transfer knowledge, all in real time. By relating activities to time, space, and energy, participants turn the abstract concepts of music into concrete realization through movement. Social and Behavioral Value: Eurhythmics activities occur in an ensemble setting. Participants work with partners, and in small and large groups to engage in purposeful movement. Benefits include the development of nonverbal communication, spatial awareness, and social interaction. Emotional Value: A natural outcome of a eurhythmics experience is joy. Based on the research of Csikszentmihalyi, a carefully balanced combination of skill level and challenge can produce flow, an optimal state of awareness, focus, and concentration. This intense concentration produces a feeling of satisfaction in the participant.
• Barefoot is ideal, but often not realistic. Do not allow flip-flops, heels, noisy shoes, or shoes that restrict safe movement. • Incorporate meaningful, expressive movement into each class period. Dalcroze Eurhythmics can be blended effectively with the other approaches. • Meaningful movement is different than movement in a game. It is rhythmic, artistic, responsive and/or creative. • Start where the children are and build on their current physical, musical, and emotional stages of development. • Helping students maintain a steady beat at the introductory phase of the activities might require the use of a hand drum by the teacher. Building independence without the hand drum is the goal. • Social interaction is a key component to this approach. Engage children often in pairs and small groups. • Space is integral to the process but can be creatively organized. Arrange the classroom for maximum space. If the maximum space is small, have some students do non-locomotor movements while others do locomotor movements and switch tasks. • Some activities call for the teacher to improvise on the piano. If you are not comfortable at the piano, read the chapter on piano improvisation to learn new ideas for improvisation. There are many options to being successful. Pentatonic, atonal, and modal harmonies can be effective as well as traditional I, IV, V7 chord progressions. Improvisations need to be clear, simple, and musical. • Activities that are non-locomotor should be done standing. When standing, the students stimulate increased brain activity. • Experience first, label second. • Be encouraging and supportive; the classroom atmosphere should be joyful! • Effective classroom management is imperative. Be consistent with expectations. It can take some time to develop a culture of movement. Be patient and do not give up!
SNEAK PEAK AT THE PRE-CONFERENCE SESSION
Hands-on Experiential Learning Focus activities can help students look for and experience patterns that translate to hearing or performing patterns in music. These activities can also serve the function of awakening muscle groups as preparation for movement experiences. A focus activity assists in clearing the mind and preparing the body with the intention of supporting on-task behaviors in the music classroom. Focus activities encourage the mind to think ahead of real time - a skill necessary for the performing arts. Eurhythmic activities involve purposeful movement implemented to increase rhythmic integrity and to teach a variety of musical concepts. Although there is emphasis placed on steady beat, the ultimate goal is to experience what is happening between the beats, therefore creating a sense of continuous flow and the unification of time, space, and energy. Some of the concepts to be taught: • • • • •
Canon Harmonic Dictation Durations Syncopation Simple, Compound, Asymmetrical, and Mixed Meters
Plastique animée is defined as “an artistic and creative embodiment of the music through individual or group movement.” It is an expressive visualization of the music in an artistic and meaningful way. The exploration activities provide a foundation for the more advanced expressive movement activities. Some of the concepts to be explored: • • •
Dynamics Articulations Nuance
Rhythmic solfège activities focus on purposeful movement while singing; the creation and manipulation of melodies; and the strengthening of inner hearing in both rhythm and pitch. Rhythmic solfège includes diatonic scales and modes, stressing the position of the semi-tones within space and time. Tools for assessment and piano improvisation will also be included. •
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