Maryland Music Educator, Spring 2021, Vol. 67, No. 3

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Vol. 68, No. 3

Spring 2021


Official Journal of the Maryland Music Educators Association

In This Issue: • New MMEA Board Members • July 2021 Virtual Conference Advocacy Arts ARE Education Campaign • Time Management for Music Educators •Higher-Level Thinking Skills in General Music • Sight Reading Strategies for Everyone in Choir • Hall of Fame Member Charles A. Haslup and the Birth of the BS Degree in Music Education at Towson University


Maryland Music Educator

Spring 2021


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right from home!

This year, our audition format will be a combination of recorded submissions and virtual meetings with faculty members.



Offering convenient opportunities to double major.


We welcome in-person tours of our campus and music facilities by appointment. Call 570-372-4260 to schedule your visit. Spring 2021

Maryland Music Educator



Maryland Music Educator

Spring 2021

Maryland Music Educator Official Journal of the Maryland Music Educators Association

Spring 2021 Volume 67, Number 3 Features…


14-18, MMEA News, including New MMEA Board Members and July 2021 Virtual Conference by JJ Norman, MMEA Executive Director; Andie Sante, MMEA Operations Manager; Kayde Deardorff, MMEA Communications Manager


Letters from Retirement: The Birth of the BS Degree in Music Education at Towson University by Dr. Richard A. Disharoon, Baltimore County (retired); Past President of MMEA, MCEA, Eastern Division of NAfME; MMEA Hall of Fame Member

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Embracing Learner Variability: Sight Reading Strategies for Everyone in Choir by Dr. Kate Evans, Towson University

Time Management for Music Educators by Dr. James T. Lindroth, Northeastern State University, Tahlequah, Oklahoma Higher Level General Music Thinking Skills Using Questioning Levels by Angela Reisler, Anne Arundel County (Retired)

Contents… 2, 14-18 MMEA News: July 2021 Conference, New Board Members, Annual Conference Review, Virtual Exhibit Hall, Session Sponsors, Job & College Fair, Advocacy Arts ARE Education Campaign 8 MMEA Executive Board Directory, Presidents, Article & Ad Information 9 MMEA Giving and Sponsorship, MMEA Hall of Fame, Award Recipients, Executive Directors, Editors

12 MMEA/NAfME Membership

14 New MMEA Board Members 15 July 2021 Virtual Conference 15 Volunteering for MMEA 16-17 Annual Conference Review, Virtual Exhibit Hall-Job & College Fair, Conference Session Sponsors 18 Advocacy: Arts ARE Education Campaign 19 The President’s Page 20 The Executive Director’s Page 32 (Cvr 4) NAfME Civic Action Field Guide

Advertisers Index Frostburg State Univ. Dept. of Music....11 Loyola University Maryland....................6 Menchey Music Service, Inc. ................10 Peripole Music, Inc...............................31 Susquehanna University Music Dept......5 Univ. of the Arts Summer Music Studies and Master of Music Education ...............13 Univ. of Maryland Baltimore Co. Department of Music ........................29 Wells School of Music, West Chester University ....................3 Wilkes Univ. Performing Arts Dept. .....12 Yamaha Corporation of America Educator Suite ....................................4

On the Cover: Springtime sky above Wills Mountain in La Vale, Allegany County, in western Maryland. Photo by Felicia Burger Johnston. The Maryland Music Educator is published for the members of the Maryland Music Educators Association, Inc., a federated state unit of the National Association for Music Education (NAfME), and music teachers in Maryland four times annually in the months of September/October, January/February, March/April, and May/June/July. Articles for publication must be submitted to the editor by August 2, October 1, January 4, and March 15, respectively. Publication dates, advertising rates, and closing dates may be found on the MMEA web page,, under “Resources/Publications”. Maryland Music Educator will be emailed to all MMEA members, educators who participate in MMEA events, district arts supervisors, college music education students, libraries, MEA editors in other states, and advertisers. It will also be posted on the MMEA website, publicly available at no cost to readers, at Editor: Felicia Burger Johnston 304-613-2871 Maryland Music Educators Association (MMEA) is the professional association for the school music teachers of Maryland. MMEA is a 501 (c)(3) not-for-profit association incorporated in the State of Maryland. MMEA’s mission is to provide professional development for music teachers, opportunities for over 26,000 people to engage in state-wide music activities, events involving students, teachers, and volunteers, and to serve as an advocate for and to advance music education in Maryland schools.

Spring 2021

Maryland Music Educator


MMEA Executive Board Directory 2020-2021 The MMEA Executive Board and staff listing is updated at Elected Officers President Brian Schneckenburger Baltimore County President-Elect Jennifer Kauffman Anne Arundel County Immediate Past President Angela Adams Anne Arundel County

Collegiate Representative Ebonie Pierce University of Maryland Baltimore County

Special Learners Chair Paul Tooker University of Maryland Eastern Shore

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Initiatives Stephanie Prichard, Co-Chair University of Maryland Maurice Watkins, Co-Chair Prince George’s County

State Large Ensemble Festivals Chr. Scott Engel Washington County

Maryland State Dept. of Education Representative Alysia Lee Maryland State Department of Education

Member at Large Thomas Pierre Prince George’s County Recording Secretary Shefali Shah Anne Arundel County Component Association Presidents

Membership Chair Janet Gross Calvert County Membership Development Chair Stephanie Thompson Calvert County

Band Directors (MBDA) Matt Heist Anne Arundel County

Music Industry Representative Scott Schimpf Music & Arts

Choral Directors (MCEA) Katherine Meloro Howard County Orchestra Directors (MODA) Dan Sitomer Anne Arundel County General Music Teachers (MGMTA) Christie Cook Calvert County College Music Educators (MSMTE) Louise Anderson Salisbury University Appointed Officers Advocacy Chair Ronald P. Frezzo Montgomery County (retired) Collegiate Chapters Representative Brian Kaufman University of Maryland Baltimore County (UMBC)

Music Supervisors Representative Karl Stewart Carroll County Music Technology Chair Krystal Williams Baltimore City Private Schools Representative Joseph Shortall Private School Public Relations Chair Deborah Turner Anne Arundel County Research Chair Cathleen Russell Baltimore County

State Solo and Ensemble Festival Chair Jeffrey Baer Wicomico County Tri-M Chair Erick Von Sas Anne Arundel County Young Composers Project Michelle Roberts Montgomery County Staff Members * Board Member *Executive Director JJ Norman PMB#472 6710 F Ritchie Highway Glen Burnie, MD 21061 Communications Manager (Part-time) Kayde Deardorff Operations Manager (Part-time) Andie Sante

MMEA Presidents 1941-43 – Robert S. Bolles 1943-45 – C. James Velie 1945-47 – Frances Jackman Civis 1947-49 – Miriam Hoffman 1949-51 – Mary M. Hunter 1951-53 – Mary de Vermond 1953-55 – Thomas R. Lawrence 1955-57 – Blanche F. Bowlsbey 1957-59 – Mildred B. Trevvett 1959-61 – Emil H. Serposs 1961-63 – Chester J. Petranek 1963-64 – Ward K. Cole 1964-65 – Chester J. Petranek 1965-67 – Donald Regier 1967-69 – Nicholas Geriak 1969-71 – Alice S. Beer 1971-73 – Joseph Chalker 1973-75 – Bert L. Damron 1975-77 – Robert E. Kersey 1977-79 – David Marchand 1979-81 – Thomas E. Silliman 1981-83 – Thomas W. Fugate 1983-85 – Clarence T. Rogers 1985-87 – John E. Wakefield 1987-89 – R. Bruce Horner 1989-91 – Patricia W. Teske 1991-93 – Phyllis R. Kaplan 1993-95 – Roger J. Folstrom 1995-97 – Barbara F. King 1997-99 – Richard A. Disharoon 1999-01 – Michael L. Mark 2001-03 – Michael L. Mark 2003-05 – Ann Vaughn 2005-07 – Amy Cohn 2007-09 – Chrystie Adams 2009-11 – Carol Howell 2011-13 – Ginny Flynn 2013-15 – Stephen W. Miles 2015-17 – Katherine A. Murphy 2017-19 – Angela Adams June-Dec. 2019 – Paul Dembowski 2019-20 – Interim Pres. Angela Adams June 2020 – Brian Schneckenburger

*Journal Editor Felicia Burger Johnston Upshur County, WV (retired)

Updates, news, and more at: Find MMEA on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter

Sight Reading Committee Chair Todd Burroughs St. Mary’s County

Maryland Music Educator Official Journal of the Maryland Music Educators Association Issue

Article Submission Deadline


Ad Contract Submission Deadline

Fall 2021

August 2, 2021

Fall 2021

August 2, 2021

Winter 2021-2022

October 1, 2021

Winter 2021-2022

October 1, 2021

Spring 2022

January 3, 2022

Spring 2022

January 3, 2022

Summer 2022

March 20, 2022

Summer 2022

March 15, 2022

Please submit articles to: Advertising information & contract submission for Maryland Music 24f03209962b/mmea-journal-article-submission. Please address quesEducator and the MMEA In-Service conference programs: tions to Felicia Burger Johnston, Editor, at


Maryland Music Educator

Spring 2021

MMEA is supported in part by a grant from the Maryland State Arts Council (, an agency funded by the State of Maryland and the National Endowment for the Arts. MSAC on Facebook™: MSAC on Twitter™: @mdartscouncil

MMEA Awards for Excellence Recipients Rosemary & James Walters Service Award 2002 – Thomas W. Fugate 2003 – Chrystie L. Adams 2004 – Richard A. Disharoon 2010 – Mabel Leonore Sawhill 2011 – Howard L. Miskimon 2011 – Sabra C. Steward 2012 – Deborah Turner 2013 – Jan Strevig 2014 – James L. Turk 2015 – Sally Wagner 2017 – Ginny Flynn 2020 – Janet Gross Corwin Taylor Music Education Leadership Award 1994 – Karen Douglas 1995 – Rosa Fletcher Crocker 1996 – Mary Ann Mears 1997 – James L. Tucker, Jr. 1998 – Roger J. Folstrom 1998 – Phyllis T. Kaplan 1999 – Barbara F. King 2002 – Mary Ellen Cohn 2004 – Chris Tuel 2005 – Linda Patton 2006 – Gary Beauchamp 2009 – Joan Orcutt 2010 – Katherine A. Rodeffer 2011 – Richard J. Deasy 2012 – C. Nelson Fritts 2013 – Nancy S. Grasmick 2017 – Anita Lambert 2018 – Michael L. Mark 2019 – Scott Herman 2020 – Todd J. Burroughs 2021 – Christopher M. Cicconi, Sybil I. Roseboro

Maryland Music Educators Association: Giving and Sponsorship MMEA provides in-service networking and professional learning for music teachers, opportunities for thousands of music students and teachers, and serves as an advocate for music education. MMEA provides student and teacher enrichment by sponsoring professional learning conferences, annual Awards for Excellence, and eight music groups for student All State music events. MMEA and five component associations, with over 300 volunteers, host district and state Solo and Ensemble events. During the spring, orchestras, bands, and choruses perform in festivals with nearly 10,000 students participating. Give Today! Become an MMEA Sponsor!

Executive Directors Maryland Music Educators Association 1998-Dec. 2018 – Mary Ellen Cohn Editors, Maryland Music Educator 1954-57 – Homer Ulrich 1957-61 – Corwin H. Taylor 1961-65 – James L. Fisher 1965-67 – Robert E. Kersey 1967-73 – W. Warren Sprouse

Nov. 2018-Feb. 2020 – Mariama Boney May 2020– JJ Norman 1973-84 – James H. Avampato 1984-86 – W. Warren Sprouse 1987-96 – Thomas W. Fugate 1996-01 – Ray H. Zeigler 2001-08 – Thomas W. Fugate 2008-09 – Dawn Farmer 2008-09 – Felicia Burger Johnston

MMEA Hall of Fame 1988 – Margaret Black 1988 – Robert S. Bolles 1988 – David Burchuck 1988 – Frances Jackman Civis 1988 – John Cole 1988 – Mary G. Cross 1988 – John Denues 1988 – Nicholas Geriak 1988 – Thomas L. Gibson 1988 – Rose Marie Grentzer 1988 – S. Fenton Harris 1988 – Miriam Hoffman 1988 – Mary M. Hunter 1988 – John Itzel 1988 – Henrietta Baker Low 1988 – Otto Ortmann 1988 – Philip S. Royer 1988 – Osmar Steinwald 1988 – Charles C. T. Stull 1988 – Eugene W. Troth 1988 – Homer Ulrich 1988 – C. James Velie 1988 – Levi Wilder 1988 – Dorothy Willison

Spring 2021

1988 – William Llewelyn Wilson 1989 – Alice S. Beer 1989 – Thomas R. Lawrence 1989 – Corwin H. Taylor 1990 – Robert E. Kersey 1990 – Dorothy S. Pickard 1991 – John Fignar, Jr. 1992 – Blanche F. Bowlsbey 1992 – Joseph F. Chalker 1992 – James L. Fisher 1993 – Thomas W. Fugate 1993 – C. William Johnson 1993 – Michael Pastelak 1994 – Mildred R. Reiner 1994 – Shirley J. Shelley 1994 – Donald Regier 1995 – David Marchand 1995 – W. Warren Sprouse 1996 – James H. Avampato 1996 – Carmelo J. Palazzo 1997 – Clarence T. Rogers 1998 – Maurice R. Feldman 1999 – Sr. Mary Theresine Staub S.S.N.D. 1999 – Nancy M. Cook

Maryland Music Educator

2000 – Mildred B. Trevvett 2003 – Leroy Battle 2003 – Glenn Patterson 2004 – Roger J. Folstrom 2004 – Phyllis R. Kaplan 2005 – Barbara F. King 2005 – Michael L. Mark 2006 – Mary Ellen Cohn 2006 – John Wakefield 2007 – Olivia W. Gutoff 2008 – Richard A. Disharoon 2008 – James L. Tucker, Jr. 2009 – Leone Y. Woodall 2010 – Bruce D. Wilson 2011 – Lee Stevens 2012 – C. Scott Sharnetzka 2012 – Cherie Stellaccio 2013 – Ray Danner 2014 – Dana Rothlisberger 2018 – Gilbert A. Brungardt (Posthumous) 2019 – Chris Vadala (Posthumous) 2020 – Charles Haslup (Posthumous)



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Spring 2021

Maryland Music Educator


Pursue your passion at Wilkes University! Wilkes University’s music program offers a wide variety of study and performance opportunities. All University students are welcome to take private lessons, pursue a minor in music or audition for any of our ensembles: Chamber Orchestra Chamber Singers Civic Band Flute Ensemble Jazz Ensemble Marching Band Pep Band Percussion Ensemble University Chorus CONTACT US TODAY FOR MORE INFORMATION: Maryellen Sloat, Division of Performing Arts | 570-408-4420

Join MMEA/NAfME Today! You automatically become a member of Maryland Music Educators Association when you join the National Association for Music Education. From local activities to national issues, MMEA and NAfME offer the combination of networking, professional development and resources you need as a music educator. • To join MMEA/NAfME online visit • To join by phone or to receive a membership application in the mail, please call NAfME Member Services at 1-800-828-0229. • Email: for any membership questions. • Already a member? Update your contact information with NAfME at July 2020 - June 2021 Dues By Membership Type Active Membership: $145 ($100 NAfME/$45 MMEA) Retired: $70 ($50 NAfME/$20 MMEA) Collegiate: $45 ($30 NAfME/$15 MMEA) Introductory: $75 ($50 NAfME/$25 MMEA) 12

Maryland Music Educator

Spring 2021


Renowned faculty from University of the Arts and content experts from across the country provide graduate-level instruction for teachers interested in expanding their pedagogical, technological, musical and instructional skills in all types of music classrooms. As a component of the Summer Music Studies program, UArts offers a 33-credit Master of Music in Music Education program that can be completed in as few as three summers. NOW ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS FOR THE MM IN MUSIC EDUCATION FOR SUMMER 2021 ENROLLMENT

SESSION 1 June 21–July 9 (3 weeks) SESSION 2 July 12–30 (3 weeks) SESSION 3 June 14–Aug. 6 (8 weeks) Registration opens March 1, 2021, for nonmatriculated students. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, all summer 2021 courses will be held online. Full SMS course info will be available in February 2021 at


2021 MMEA Board Elections

MMEA is pleased to announce the results of our 2021 Board Elections. Congratulations to our newest Board members! Maryland Orchestra Directors Association President-Elect Dana Shieh, Prince George’s County An active teacher and adjudicator, Mrs. Dana Shieh has been teaching for the past 28 years. This is her twelfth year directing the orchestra program at Thomas G. Pullen Arts Academy in Prince George’s County. Under her direction, the middle school orchestra program consistently earns a superior rating at the state orchestra assessment. Mrs. Shieh holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Viola Performance from Columbus State University, a Master’s Degree in Music Education from Florida State University, and Suzuki certification from Emory and Henry College. Mrs. Shieh has previously served as a director for the Summer Instrumental Music Experience at University of Maryland and has judged All State, Solo and Ensemble, and Orchestra Festivals around the state. As a performer, Mrs. Shieh has performed professionally with the National Philharmonic Orchestra and other orchestras in the DC area. Mrs. Shieh resides in Upper Marlboro with her husband and sons, Ryan and David. Maryland Choral Educators Association President Dr. Edryn J. Coleman, Howard County Dr. Edryn J. Coleman serves as choral director at Oakland Mills High School in Columbia, Maryland. There he teaches Chamber Choir, Vocal Ensemble, Concert Choir, and Piano. Edryn has taught music successfully at every level - elementary, middle, collegiate, and now high school. It was always a personal and professional goal of his to teach students at each academic level. During his time in middle school his choirs from Hyattsville Middle (Prince 14

George's County) performed for the Maryland Music Educators Association state conference. During his collegiate teaching, his choir at Lincoln University of Pennsylvania auditioned and was selected to perform for the state American Choral Directors Association (ACDA) Fall Conference. In addition, he has a plethora of guest conducting, judging, and conference presentations to date. Dr. Coleman also serves as the Encompassing Genres Repertoire and Resource Chair for the Maryland/DC ACDA Chapter. A native of Montgomery, Alabama, he holds a BA degree in voice from Stillman College, an MME degree from Florida State University, and his DMA degree from the Shenandoah Conservatory of Music at Shenandoah University. Dr. Coleman lives by the motto “They’ll never care how much you know until they know how much you care!” Maryland Choral Educators Association President-Elect Antoinette (Toni) Daniel, Wicomico County Toni Daniel is a longtime advocate and supporter of the Performing Arts. She is the Director of Choral Activities at Parkside High School in Salisbury, Maryland, completing her 18th year. During her tenure, Toni has served in several roles for various choral events and organizations. Some of these positions include: All Shore Junior and Senior Chair, District V Junior Choral Festival Chair, District V Senior Choral Festival Chair and the President of the Eastern Shore Choral Association. As a former graduate of Parkside High School, Toni found her passion for choral music during her high school experience in Honors Choir. She began to understand the positive impact the performing arts can have on a student’s life - a place of acceptance and belonging. She makes it her mission to make each of her students feel the same way every day. Her daily motto is: “When in doubt…sing it out!”

Maryland Music Educator

Spring 2021

July 2021 Virtual Conference Making Equity Actionable

Twelve state Music Education Associations (MEAs)* across the United States have partnered with Maryland MEA to host the 2021 Virtual Conference on July 13-15, 2021. All sessions will be hosted live between 11:00 AM and 5:15 PM ET daily. Building on successes from past virtual events, we anticipate hosting thousands of educators from across the United States and beyond for professional learning. The theme of the conference is Making Equity Actionable. How do we welcome all students and teachers as we seek to improve equitable access and representation in music education? Educators will learn strategies for opening doors to all students while evaluating the curricula we teach to ensure cultural relevance. Registration is now open: please visit for information and details. *The Associations include: Arkansas, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nebraska, North Carolina, Virginia, Washington, DC, and Wyoming.

MMEA Opportunities to Volunteer Interested in volunteering with MMEA? See Spring 2021

Maryland Music Educator


MMEA 2021 Annual In-Service Conference


he 2021 MMEA Annual Inservice Conference was held virtually March 5-7, 2021. The Association hosted over 40 session presenters, 400 participants, and a Virtual Exhibit Hall & College Fair that was free and open to the public, with over 30 participating colleges, universities, and corporate sponsors. These post-event survey responses speak for themselves: • “This was a really nice variety of sessions as they pertain to all fields. The presenters were high quality. I had not been to an in-person conference in a couple of years that was this high energy and useful to me. This was a great conference!”

• “Thank you for a great experience, and for opening new doors to music educators!” • “This was a very informative conference and it being virtual did not take away from that! I felt welcome, engaged, and excited in each session I joined. I am so inspired to use some of what I learned this week.” • “This format can never replace the in-person conference but I think you pulled it off very well! I was especially impressed that the majority of topics covered are what's important for us NOW, even if they weren't about "music". Well done.” • “I am really excited about the focus on diversity across the board and the endless possibilities derived from collaboration.”

♫♫♫♫♫♫ It's not where you start or even what happens to you along the way that's important. What is important is that you persevere and never give up on yourself. ~ Zig Ziglar


Maryland Music Educator

Spring 2021

Virtual Exhibit Hall Job & College Fair

Exhibitors, Session Sponsors, and College Fair Exhibitors Thank you to our Exhibitors and Session Sponsors!

Hal Leonard Menchey Music Service Peripole, Inc. University of Charleston (WV), UC Bands

Thank you to our College Fair Exhibitors!

Adelphi University Bard College Conservatory of Music Boston University School of Music Community College of Baltimore County Delaware State University Frederick Community College Music Program Frostburg State University, Department of Music Harford Community College The Hartt School at University of Hartford

College Fair Exhibitors, continued

Ithaca College School of Music Lebanon Valley College Millersville University, Tell School of Music New England Conservatory The New School's The College of Performing Arts Penn State School of Music Salisbury University Music Program Shenandoah Conservatory Susquehanna University Department of Music Towson University Department of Music University of Charleston (WV), UC Bands University of the District of Columbia College of Arts and Sciences University of Maryland Baltimore County (UMBC), Department of Music University of Maryland School of Music University of North Texas College of Music USC Thornton School of Music West Chester University, Wells School of Music Westminster College of the Arts at Rider University

Thanks to JJ Norman, MMEA Executive Director, and Andie Sante, MMEA Operations Manager, for information on these pages, and thanks to Kayde Deardorff, MMEA Communications Manager, for graphics on these pages. Spring 2021

Maryland Music Educator


Advocacy New National Campaign – Arts ARE Education Looking Ahead to the 2021-2022 School Year All PreK-12 students have the right to a high-quality schoolbased arts education in dance, music, theatre, and visual arts taught by certified professional arts educators in partnership with community arts providers. As a well-rounded subject area under federal education law, the Every Students Succeeds Act, music and the arts support the social and emotional well-being of students, foster a welcoming and safe school environment, and encourage inclusivity through multiple pathways for every child’s creative voice. What We’re Facing: 1. Budget shortfalls. School districts can expect significantly lower revenue in the coming school year due to state and local budget deficits caused by the pandemic recession. 2. A focus on remediation. School leaders, administrators and politicians are focused on addressing pandemic learning loss in the coming school year and beyond. That will lead to a call for intensive remediation, a teaching strategy that often limits access to

arts education for students who are behind. 3. A continued need for Personal Protective Equipment that is unique to the arts classroom. As we celebrate being back together in the classroom, state and local guidance may require continued mitigation of potential viral spread in performing arts classrooms. This means additional cost to keep dance, music, theatre, and visual arts programs active and in-person. What You Can Do Now: 1. Embrace the Arts ARE Education campaign. Encourage your school board to pass the Arts ARE Education Resolution and encourage community members to sign the pledge. 2. Speak with school leaders in your district about the power of arts education. Share the campaign Talking Points Page and stories of how arts education has continued successfully throughout the pandemic in your schools and supported students’ well-being and a positive school climate. 3. Celebrate with other school districts that embrace the Arts ARE Education campaign. Share your wins on the Arts ARE Education website, along with your district’s resolution.

“A teacher affects eternity: he can never tell where his influence stops.” ~Henry Brooks Adams, 1838-1918, The Education of Henry Adams (1907)


Maryland Music Educator

Spring 2021

The President’s Page

Dr. Brian Schneckenburger


Recent Successes


ello Maryland Music Educators! I hope you are doing well as your systems negotiate the logistical challenges in reopening school buildings across Maryland. Notice that I said school BUILDINGS: we all know that schools have remained open, and that we have all been working harder than ever for our students. Thanks to each of you for your incredible efforts! I would like to begin by congratulating all of the recipients of our 2021 Awards for Excellence. This year, we recognized educators for their contributions in three categories: Outstanding Career Music Educators, Outstanding (non-music) Administrator, and the Corwin F. Taylor Leadership Award. I would like to say a special word of thanks to Thomas Pierre, MMEA Member at Large, for his work in planning the process, as well as to everyone who sent in nominations. We look forward to honoring our awardees on April 10 at 12:00 p.m. Spring continues to be a busy time for MMEA, even in a virtual environment. We are celebrating a very successful Student Leadership Conference and the Annual Inservice Conference that was full of wonderful speakers and presenters and great conversations! Thanks to the Conference Planning Committee and MMEA Staff (JJ, Andie, and Kayde) for their parts in putting together a great professional learning experience! MMEA has accepted entries for a virtual Spring Solo and Ensemble Festival, welcoming all Maryland music students in public, private, independent schools, or homeschooled students, to submit recordings for adjudication by MMEA Festival Judges. Scores and feedback will be sent to these students in May. The NAfME Eastern Division Conference (virtual) occurred from April 22-24. Featured speakers included NAfME President Dr. Mackie Spradley, Eastern Division President Keith Hodgson, and jazz icon Wynton Marsalis! Maryland was also well represented among presenters, and it was a conference not to be missed! In addition, the work to move MMEA forward continues. We are excited to welcome our newly elected officers to the Board this summer! Thanks to MMEA President-Elect Jen Kauffman for her

leadership of the Nominating Committee. Jen has been very busy, as she has also spearheaded the work of revising the MMEA Strategic Plan. Sessions have been facilitated by Marc Greene, NAfME Eastern Division Past President, and have been very positive, productive, and fun! MMEA has been part of ongoing collaborative conversations with the other professional arts education organizations regarding efforts across the state to determine appropriate steps for advocacy. We were excited to recognize our Outstanding Teacher Awardees at the Maryland Arts awards day on Friday, April 6 in the presence of Maryland Governor Larry Hogan and First Lady Yumi Hogan. We are also participating in NAfME’s Virtual Hill Month, with virtual visits to the Offices of Senator Ben Cardin, Senator Chris Van Hollen, and Congressman John Sarbanes. We are very fortunate to have such great representation for Maryland and Music Education! Thanks to Ron Frezzo, MMEA Advocacy Chair, for scheduling these visits, and to our Maryland delegation for your advocacy! Finally, we are also looking toward the later spring and summer. Preparations are underway for the July virtual conference. The theme of the conference is Making Equity Actionable.This will be a truly unique partnership with 12 other Music Educators Associations from across the country (Arkansas, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nebraska, North Carolina, Virginia, Washington, DC, and Wyoming). During this conference, we will also unveil the MMEA Strategic Plan, which will help us to chart our course for the next few years. In closing, you will notice that there are many people mentioned in this column. This is not an accident, and neither is the recent success of our organization. It is because of those people that we are evolving the culture of our organization. We have much work still to do, and we need your help! If you want to become involved, please contact me at any time.

“One does not discover new lands without consenting to lose sight of the shore for a very long time.” ~ from The Counterfeiters with Journal of the Counterfeiters, by André Gide, French Author, 1869-1951 Spring 2021

Maryland Music Educator


The Executive Director’s Page

JJ Norman


A New Day for MMEA: Reflecting on Year One Dear Fellow Music Education Advocates, Thank you for the groundbreaking work you have done in your virtual and in-person classrooms this year. The field of music education was faced with seemingly insurmountable challenges, and you met them head-on. Bravi, for all you have done to ensure students continue to have access to music education during this time. It certainly hasn’t been easy, but you know better than anyone that our students need us now more than ever. May 18, 2020, was my first day as executive director of MMEA. Even at that point - two months into the pandemic, I was incredibly naive as to what the months ahead would hold for me personally, for us as an Association, and for the field of Music Education as a whole. With that said, we have come a long way since those early days of lockdown. I remember wondering what would become the driving force behind the Association during my time with MMEA. Seven days later, George Floyd was murdered, and the question I had been asking myself was answered. Equity. From the MMEA “Black Lives Matter Statement” (scroll to link at bottom of the webpage) published on June 5, 2020: “The Maryland Music Educators Association publicly affirms its commitment to identify, discuss, and combat issues raised in our policies, programs, and practices in our effort to eradicate racism, discrimination, and bigotry in the music teaching profession.” From those early days to today, MMEA leadership has been hyperfocused on finding immediately actionable ways to lower barriers to accessing our events and activities. While we have made headway and been successful on multiple fronts, I’ll focus on a few of the efforts I am most proud of: • Fall Solo & Ensemble Festival - This festival was a brand new event and did not include an approved repertoire list. Students and educators were encouraged to select pieces that reflect the student’s personal experiences and culture. • Pay What You Can - For students and educators alike, the option to “Pay What You Can” for registration rates and application fees has been appreciated and has allowed some to participate who may not have been able to otherwise. • Spring Solo & Ensemble Festival - We heard loud and clear that students who are homeschooled and students of private instructors also, of course, deserve the opportunity to participate. Knowing not all students learn in the same way, it makes perfect sense to include students and teachers outside the mainstream PreK-12 public/private school model. • This summer, MMEA will be producing the 2021 July Virtual Conference, an event co-hosted in partnership with 12 other state Music Education Associations (MEAs). Theme: Making 20

Equity Actionable - How do we welcome all students and teachers as we seek to improve equitable access and representation in music education? Educators will learn strategies for opening doors to all students while evaluating the curricula we teach to ensure cultural relevance. What can we expect moving forward? That is a great question. Just like the trajectory toward full in-person instruction is still unclear, we too are unsure when in-person activities will return to MMEA. However, we know that students and educators across Maryland and beyond have benefited from the flexibility provided by virtual programming (conferences, auditions, festivals, etc.). While nothing is set in stone, we anticipate a number of our annual offerings remaining virtual in perpetuity. Simply put, the equity of access virtual programming provides is well worth the learning curve required to adapt to our new environment. I look forward to the day when we can look back 3 to 5 years and realize our participation rates have grown exponentially thanks to the policies, practices, and procedures we are changing today. With that said, in-person conferences and festivals will return, but the questions of which, when, and how remain. I would be remiss not to mention my colleagues Brian Schneckenburger and Jen Kauffman, two incredibly dedicated and passionate leaders. Together, the three of us have worked hand-inhand on all aspects of the many transitions over the past year. Their insight, experience, and desire to seek out and listen to people who have been previously overlooked is inspiring. I’m honored and thankful to continue this work with the two of you. I also want to thank the MMEA Executive Board for the trust they have in me to serve in this position and my fellow staff members, Kayde and Andie, for their help to make sure the “behind the scenes” work continues. Will we see a day when everything returns to “normal”? I sure hope not. We have grown and changed to better meet the needs of educators and students - from the western panhandle to the eastern shore - and that should make us all proud. We cannot and will not leave anyone out in our mission to advance music education for ALL. I hope you are just as proud to be a member of MMEA as I am. Please know my door is always open.

! JJ Norman Executive Director Maryland Music Educators Association

Maryland Music Educator

Spring 2021

Letters from Retirement The Birth of the BS Degree in Music Education at Towson University by Richard A. Disharoon, Baltimore County (retired); Past President of MMEA, MCEA, and Eastern Division of NAfME; MMEA Hall of Fame Member


n retirement, we sometimes find ourselves reflecting on many aspects of our careers, especially on the journey that led us to and along the path to our careers. In January 2021, the person most responsible for my journey in both regards came to mind once again during the month of his death 15 years ago and along with it my promise to Dr. Philip Collister, Chair of the Music Department at Towson University, to write about the history of the development of the department. The person most important to my career and the person responsible for the creation of the University’s majors in music and music education were one and the same: Charles A. Haslup. The promise resulted from the lost opportunity to describe the creation of these music majors during my remarks about Mr. Haslup for induction into the MMEA Hall of Fame at the 2020 MMEA Awards for Excellence reception. That event was cancelled due to the pandemic. Charles A. Haslup was not only my undergraduate advisor at the State Teachers College at Towson; he also became my mentor, providing me with numerous opportunities for musical growth. As you will learn from the story that follows, he guided me along the path of the developing music education major, enabling me to graduate with credits in music theory, history, and performance that led to immediate acceptance upon graduation into a master’s degree program in music education. Armed with those undergraduate credentials and two summers of graduate study, I was certified to teach music in Maryland after spending one year as a fourth-grade teacher, for which I was certified by my BS degree in Elementary Education. The late 1950s-early 1960s were exciting years on the Towson campus. Under the leadership of President Earle T. Hawkins, the college was constantly growing and changing. Charles Haslup was selected by Dr. Hawkins to lead the development of majors in music and music education. But I’m getting ahead of myself. This is the story. History of Music Education at Towson University Teaching music was included in the training of teachers preparing to teach the elementary grades when Towson State Normal School opened in 1886. (A Normal School is an educational institution to train high school graduates to become teachers, generally leading to a teaching certificate granted after two years of study. Where Normal Schools still exist, they are often also called Teachers Colleges.) Music in the Elementary School remained part of the training of elementary teachers until the early 1960s, even though by that time some Maryland school districts had begun to employ music specialists. The college began the journey toward becoming a four-year liberal arts school in the 1930s when the two-year certificate became three years in 1931 and the four-year Bachelor of Science degree in Education was introduced in 1934. The school’s name was changed Spring 2021

to State Teachers College at Towson in 1935. Charles A. Haslup was a 1938 graduate of the State Teachers College at Towson, in the first class to graduate with the BS Degree in Education. Momentous changes in the mission of the school had continued to take place during the 1940s, especially under the leadership of President Earle T. Hawkins, who was appointed president of the school in 1947. In 1957, Charles A. Haslup returned to the college as a member of the music department. Hawkins inherited a twoyear junior college program (begun in 1946) designed to attract more students to the school. The two-year program prepared students to transition to a four-year bachelor of science program, ideally transitioning to the BS degree in education offered by Towson under a plan that offered free tuition in exchange for agreeing to teach for two years in Maryland schools. This plan had come about because of a drastic decline in enrollment (under 300) in the early years of World War II, leaving a dearth of teachers for the schools. Returning to the campus in 1957 with his undergraduate Music in the Elementary School training; a master’s degree in music education; experience teaching music in the Anne Arundel County Public Schools and the University of Maryland, College Park; and additional graduate study at Teachers College, Columbia University, Haslup proved to be the right person at the right time. Dr. Hawkins put Haslup in charge of creating majors in music and music education as part of realizing his plans to transform Towson into a four-year liberal arts college. Two long-time music faculty members would soon retire, and others (at least, in the judgement of students) did not have the leadership skills required for the task. Because of new programs introduced in the late 1940s - training junior high school teachers in 1947, kindergarten teachers in 1949, and implementation of the free tuition program - the student body in the late 1950s numbered around 1,500 students. (Interesting note for anyone familiar with the Towson campus: all classes were still held in Stephens Hall, the original classroom building erected when the school moved to Towson in 1910.) Charles Haslup’s personality attracted students to participate in department activities, especially activities sponsored by Dr. Hawkins, who called on him to organize entertainment for campus visitors. Haslup became an advisor in the Junior College program; organized a new performing group, the Men’s Chorus, adding another performance elective for a developing program; and taught the Music in the Elementary School and music elective courses. Rounding out the growth of the 1950s decade, the college opened a graduate school in 1959, offering a master’s degree in education and, in 1960, began training high school teachers.

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...Music Education at Towson University, Letters from Retirement, continued on next page


...Music Education at Towson University, Letters from Retirement, continued from previous page

Steps Toward the Goal: Area of Concentration in Music Simultaneously with this growth, Hawkins was leading the college toward becoming a liberal arts school through the development of Areas of Concentration in major areas of study, including the arts. Although Haslup was not chair of the music department, when he began counseling students he knew were interested in teaching music and interviewing prospective new faculty, it became obvious that he had been chosen by Dr. Hawkins to be responsible for the success of the Area of Concentration in Music announced in the 1959 curriculum publication. The purposes of an area of concentration in music are to give a comprehensive introduction to both general music subjects and skill subjects; to afford the student an opportunity for self-expression; to acquaint the student with trends, styles, and periods in the historical development of music; and to offer the student an opportunity to investigate specific areas of music in advanced courses. The required courses were either Experiences with Music for Young Children (reflecting the training of kindergarten teachers that began in 1949) or Music in Elementary School Education; 1-3 credit hours in either Glee Club, Orchestra or Men’s Chorus; and 6-7 required credit hours selected from the following electives: Instrumental Class and Ensemble or Ensemble Singing, Sight Singing, Conducting, Creative Music or Harmony and Ear Training, Twentieth Century Music, and American Music or History of Music. The remaining 1-7 credit hours to complete the area of concentration could be selected from courses in the above paragraph not already selected, and from Class Piano and Music in the Elementary School-Advanced Course. There are two important observations from this information: 1) the tradition of preparing elementary classroom teachers to teach music remained embedded in the curriculum; 2) the foundation for majors in music and music education was clearly established well in advance of approval for awarding BS degrees in music education. Students awarded a Bachelor of Science degree in Education with an Area of Concentration in Music had enough credits, in general, to be accepted into graduate programs leading to a master’s degree in music education. In the Spring 1960 curriculum bulletin, an announcement by the music department foreshadowed the BS in music education with this announcement: “The Department of Music offers a minor which certifies the student to teach in the State of Maryland. In addition to five hours of required music, it consists of thirty hours of music electives”. Course work for the four-year music minor consisted of courses in the Area of Concentration in Music in the same format or re-organized into separate courses such as Harmony 1 and

Harmony 2 (replacing one course in Harmony and Ear Training), Choral and Instrumental Conducting, newly added Choral and Instrumental Methods, two courses in Music Appreciation, and a course in Music Fundamentals. Music in the Elementary SchoolAdvanced Course became a required course. The Dean of Instruction assured students that the college was committed to enabling them to complete the requirements of the Area of Concentration in Music or to meet in full the requirements of the new program. The announcement ended with this statement foreshadowing the future: “The Department of Music plans to start offering a major within the next two years”. Throughout the fast-moving changes from 1959-1962, Charles Haslup was leading the way toward the majors in music and music education. He would meet with students pursuing the new Area of Concentration in Music to make sure they enrolled in the courses being offered the next semester, ensuring enough enrollment for the courses to be offered. By the beginning of the 1961-62 academic year, pursing music at Towson was a mixed bag, with some students finishing the area of concentration, others beginning the music minor, while others reconciled courses and credits between the two courses of study. Charles Haslup left the guidance of all this work in the hands of other faculty for a one semester leave of absence for further graduate study at Teachers College, Columbia University, during the first semester of the 1961-62 academic year. He returned for the second semester with a new faculty member, another signal of things to come. Indeed, during the remainder of that semester and probably into the summer, no doubt with the assistance of other faculty and administration staff, Haslup was developing the final draft of a four-year program of studies leading to a Bachelor of Science degree in Music Education that was submitted for approval to the Maryland State Department of Education. The Goal Achieved In a letter dated September 5, 1962, Haslup, now the chair of the music department, received a letter from W. T. Boston, Asst. Superintendent for Certification and Accreditation at the Maryland State Department of Education stating: “This is to certify that the proposed program for the preparation of teachers as submitted to this office….will be acceptable for the certification of teachers of music in the public schools of Maryland. Candidates who complete the full program will be eligible for a certificate valid for teaching at both the secondary ...Music Education at Towson University, Letters from Retirement, continued on next page

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Spring 2021

...Music Education at Towson University, Letters from Retirement, continued from previous page

school and elementary school levels”. In 1963, the name of the college was changed to Towson State College to reflect its full status as a liberal arts school. The first recipients of a BS in Music Education degree graduated in 1966. Charles Haslup continued as chair of the Music Department for five years. In 1967, Dr. Hawkins appointed him Assistant to the President of the University, a position he retained until his retirement in 1985. In 1984, he was awarded the Special President’s Award by President Hoke Smith. Charles A. Haslup When I nominated Charles A. Haslup for the MMEA Hall of Fame in 2020, here’s how I described the man who was my advisor and mentor, the man I observed at work: Charles A. Haslup was a retiring, rather shy man who came to life at the piano and when counseling students. He shunned the limelight, always putting students front and center. When he promised to help, he never failed. Behind the scenes, he was a power house. That’s why he got things done. That’s why President Hawkins relied on him for the important work of creating the music education major. That’s why

Dr Hawkins wanted him by his side as Assistant to the President. That’s why successive presidents kept him there. Perhaps if Mr. Haslup had remained chair of the music department for a longer period of time, he would have been recognized during his lifetime for his leadership in creating the majors in music and music education. Even when he continued to teach a course in music administration, most students, if any, didn’t know the role he had played in making possible the reason they were at Towson. Of course, he would never tell them. That’s why his induction into the MMEA Hall of Fame was such a fitting tribute to his work to expand music education in Maryland. Sadly, the tribute came fourteen years after his death, but he did live to see Towson University become the leading institution in the state for training music educators. Full disclosure: Charles Haslup was my Junior College advisor who brought me into the BS in Education program in elementary education with an emphasis in the Area of Concentration in Music. As my college career progressed, he became my mentor, guiding me toward my career in music education and into my graduate years.

About the Author: Richard A. Disharoon, MMEA Hall of Fame member and Past President of MMEA, MCEA, and the Eastern Division of NAfME, has been a choral music educator and voice teacher for over fifty years. He earned his B.S. degree in Elementary Education from State Teachers College at Towson (now Towson University); his M.A. degree in Music Education from Teachers College, Columbia University; and his Ph.D. in Secondary Music Education at the University of Maryland, College Park. For forty years he was the Chair of Visual and Performing Arts and Choral Director at Pikesville High School, Baltimore County Public Schools, and he was Director of Music at Arnolia United Methodist church for twenty years. From 1985-1990, he was Director of Choral Activities at the Essex Campus of the Community College of Baltimore County where he founded the Greater Baltimore Youth Chorale. He was Director of the Parkville Summer Choral Workshop from1988-1999. In 2004, he was honored with the MMEA Rosemary and James Walters Service Award. Dr. Disharoon has guest conducted several Maryland high school and middle school honors choruses. He is active as an adjudicator for Solo and Ensemble and large ensemble festivals. Dr. Disharoon was an Adjunct Professor of Choral Music Education at Loyola University of Maryland, the Peabody Conservatory of Music, and Towson University. His many articles on Choral Music Education based on teaching these graduate courses were published in Maryland Music Educator. Dr. Disharoon maintained a private voice studio for several years and at the Maryland Conservatory of Music from 2005-2009. He specialized in working with male developing voices.

If we are to reach real peace in this world… we shall have to begin with children. ~ Mahatma Gandhi, 1869-1948, in a speech delivered at Montessori Training College, London, 1931, referencing a statement by Maria Montessori (1870–1952). Gandhi was an Indian lawyer, anti-colonial nationalist, and political ethicist Spring 2021

Maryland Music Educator


Embracing Learner Variability: Sight Reading Strategies for Everyone in Choir by Dr. Kate Evans, Towson University Republished with permission from South Carolina Musician, the official journal of the South Carolina Music Educators Association, 2018, Vol. 72, No. 1


t was my first day teaching the newly formed high school choir in my northern Michigan school district. The energy level was high and I smiled as I looked out at the students in my class, a mixture of my former middle school students who continued in choir at high school and new faces who were singing in a choir for the first time. We had just finished introductions and singing a few vocal warm-ups, and students were looking through the folders of music I had carefully prepared for their first day of choir. A hand went up in the back, and I called on the student, who said, “I have a question. Why are there hockey sticks all over this?” I was confused and asked him to show me what he was referring to, and the student pointed to the musical notation on the octavo. He thought the quarter notes and other note values were hockey sticks (remember, this was in northern Michigan). I looked around and saw other students nodding their heads in agreement. Trying not to panic, I asked if anyone else was unsure of what those “hockey sticks” meant, and two-thirds of the class raised their hands. I quickly realized that I was going to have to rethink my grand plans (and a few of my repertoire choices) and spend some quality time working on musical literacy. How could I best serve the needs of the diverse learners in my class? In the field of education, our mantra is "Experience before label!" Students must experience concepts before putting a name to them. With such varied levels of experience in aural skills and reading musical notation within this one class, I knew that I must devise creative ways to motivate my choir members on their paths to musical literacy. The principles of Universal Design for Learning provided the framework I needed to teaching sight reading skills to choral students through engaging experiential and multisensory activities. What is Universal Design for Learning and Why Should We Utilize It? In architecture, Universal Design is an approach to design that works from the inception of planning to ensure that buildings can be used by all people regardless of their age, size, ability, or disability. It goes beyond making provisions for certain segments of the population to emphasize a creative and inclusive approach that enhances the environment for all people. In education, Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is a framework for proactively designing curricula and learning environments that recognize and support learner variability, giving all students an equal opportunity to learn.

“UDL provides a blueprint for creating instructional goals, methods, materials, and assessments that work for everyone - not a single, one-size-fits-all solution, but rather flexible approaches that can be customized or adjusted for individual needs.”1 Because the individuals in our classrooms bring unique sets of skills, needs, and interests to learning, it is our responsibility to teach and design curriculum and assessment with learner variability in mind. How Does UDL Help Teachers in the Classroom? The three overarching principles of UDL involve providing multiple means of representation, action and expression, and engagement to learners. These principles and related guidelines “offer a set of concrete suggestions that can be applied to any discipline or domain to ensure that all learners can access and participate in meaningful, challenging learning opportunities.”2 The UDL framework provides options for engaging the recognition, strategic, and affective networks of learning.

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Above: Universal Design for Learning Networks3

Strategies for Sight Reading! Research suggests that no single system of sight reading has emerged as most effective. “All sight singing methods are a means to an end, not an end to themselves.” 4 Making time for building musical literacy in every rehearsal must be a priority, as small amounts of distributed practice will be more effective than “cramming” sessions Sight Reading Strategies, continued on next page


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Spring 2021

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right before assessments. Demorest found that individual assessment and accountability resulted in significant improvement in sight singing performance.5 In my own experience, I found that the most important aspect to consider when choosing sight reading materials is that the approach is supported by a logical learning sequence. Where to Begin? Start simply and remember the music education mantra, “Experience before label!” Young children imitate sounds and speak before they learn to read and write, and our choral singers must follow a similar sequence when learning to sight read. Singers must develop a sense of steady beat and must listen and imitate various rhythmic and melodic patterns to build an aural “memory bank” they can later access when learning to read and write musical notation. The more aural musical “change” we deposit into this “bank” early on, the more we will be able to “withdraw” later when it is needed. Rhythmic Training Steps The first step is to choose a rhythmic reading system (syllables or counting) and use it consistently. Have students move to feel steady beat and then echo rhythmic patterns performed by the teacher, building from simple to more complex over time. Provide multiple means of representation and increase engagement by having students perform rhythms with a beat track or instrumental cover in the background. In addition to clapping, students should speak and sing rhythmic patterns - why miss an opportunity to reinforce musicality and vowel shapes? Allow students to create their own rhythmic patterns aurally, and once they are fluent and comfortable, introduce notation. I prefer to start with manipulatives, such as the heartbeat kit or interactive whiteboard activities to help visual, kinesthetic, and tactile learners, rather than writing formal notation. The act of writing notation is a skill that takes practice in itself, and students often get stuck on drawing the notation perfectly instead of creating their own patterns or listening to the rhythmic dictation example.

Above: Heartbeat Kit Manipulatives

When completing a rhythmic dictation exercise for the first time, I use the “think-aloud” strategy to model the following steps for students: • Listen carefully • Think rhythm syllables • Write what you know using stick notation

• Move on rather than getting stuck on one tricky beat • Fill in missing notes on subsequent repetitions The opportunity to use manipulatives provides multiple means of representation when presenting new information and enables students to demonstrate their knowledge through multiple means of action and expression. Additional UDL connections are made using multiple means of engagement by providing scaffolding in the form of a think-aloud and dictation checklist as students begin the dictation process. Allowing students the choice to work alone or with partners also increases engagement and provides support for students who may need additional assistance. Melodic Training Steps Choose a melodic reading system and use it consistently, as this will provide a strong foundation for aural skills and later for reading skills. I personally prefer moveable do solfège with la-based minor, but any system that is used regularly will be effective. Start with the pentatonic scale, using solfège and Curwen hand signs to benefit kinesthetic and visual learners. These tools provide opportunities for multiple means of representation, action and expression, and engagement. For beginners, practice frequently used intervals and stepwise motion first. The Kodály Method provides a logical sequence for introducing solfège that works well for singers of all ages! (Note that the solfège syllables in the main middle C octave, Do Re Mi Fa So La Ti Do, are notated in shorthand as DRMFSLTD’ and that pitches above the main octave are notated as D’ R’ etc. and pitches below the main octave are notated as L,S, etc.) Progressively add each pitch and practice intervals and patterns in combination. SM SML SMD LSMD SMRD LSMRD (pentatonic scale) MRDL, (minor mode) MRDL,S, D’LSMRD F and T are introduced later as needed, as they are more difficult for young singers. The overarching progression of building melodic literacy follows the natural sequence of language development, which is aural, written, and then reading. In this process, “Experience before label!” is once again our mantra. Building an aural and oral awareness of pitch and interval relationships before writing or reading notation is a vital step on the path to musical literacy.

Above: Interactive whiteboard dictation Sight Reading Strategies, continued on next page Spring 2021

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Strategies to Build and Reinforce Skills and Increase Engagement Contrary to popular belief, sight reading does not have to be a painful experience that is dreaded by choral directors and singers alike! It is a skill that should be practiced regularly and eventually incorporated in the process of learning new music as we help our singers become independent musicians. Manipulatives, movement, games, and of course simply singing provide opportunities for singers of all ages to interact with and demonstrate their understanding of the content in various ways. Tone ladders provide a useful representation of pitch when careful attention is paid to the accurate portrayal of distance between intervals. All of our students are variable learners, and there are many opportunities for them to interact with pitch in visual, kinesthetic, and tactile ways. Many singers utilize Curwen hand signs as a kinesthetic and visual approach to seeing and feeling the distance between intervals. This strategy also allows the choir director to visually assess which students are struggling with the solfège. Solfège “texting sticks” serve as a portable tone ladder for tactile and visual learners and are easily stored in a choral folder for easy access during rehearsals. These “texting sticks” may be customized to include solfège or hand signs for the pentatonic scale, a oneoctave diatonic scale, or other options as needed. Templates and directions to create your own solfège texting sticks are available at

These assorted tone ladders and manipulatives may be used for a variety of activities that reinforce aural skills, including echoing patterns and unison or even two-part singing if the teacher is coordinated enough to perform different solfège with each hand! Playing games, such as Rhythmic Poison or Melodic Poison, are also effective in increasing student engagement while practicing sight reading skills. Directions and resources for Poison games may be found at To save one’s voice and to increase the challenge level for students, teachers may also use the soprano recorder to play rhythmic or melodic patterns and have students echo back by clapping or singing solfège with hand signs. Before transitioning to reading and writing notation, I wanted to be sure that my students were confident singers. As part of our daily warm-up and aural skills time, students worked on building part independence. We sang simple folk songs in unison and added movements to the beat and the rhythm to work on autonomy as well as listening to the group. Students eventually created their own rhythmic and melodic ostinato parts to accompany the songs, then progressed to partner songs and canons. To scaffold partsinging and increase buy-in, I used silly terms to break the singers 26

Start simply and remember the music education mantra, “Experience before label!” Young children imitate sounds and speak before they learn to read and write, and our choral singers must follow a similar sequence when learning to sight read. into groups. Students singing the same part would form “smircles” - small section circles - to face the others singing their part, which provided additional support focusing their listening on their own part. When they were successfully singing in “smircles,” the singers transitioned to a “larcle” - a large circle - to better hear how their own part fit within the context of the whole ensemble. The opportunity to physically change positions in the room and to work with their peers in small groups provided multiple means of engaging students and offered additional scaffolding for all singers. After much practice, students were consistently able to sing and move independently with confidence, and they were ready to transition to reading and writing formal notation. Transitioning from Aural Awareness to Writing and Reading Notation Once a strong foundation of experiencing aural and oral skills has been established, singers may progress to labeling those rhythmic and melodic sounds through writing and reading notation. As a young teacher, I made the mistake of jumping right into written notation with my choir students, and my students struggled. As I gained more teaching experience, I understood the importance of having students experience and internalize rhythmic and melodic patterns before trying to read notation, and also realized that many students needed additional assistance in order to be successful. Looking through the lens of UDL, simple modifications in the representation of content and multiple levels of scaffolding would help my variable learners find success in sight reading. The key to helping students become confident sight readers was to progress from simple to more complex skills in a logical sequence. I started asking students to create and perform their own rhythmic and melodic patterns using the foundation of aural skills we had been upon since the start of the school year. They began by creating individual patterns, then combined with classmates to compose longer patterns or two-part examples. Students started by using manipulatives, such as heartbeat kits or solfège flashcards, then progressed to written notation. Once they were comfortable writing and performing their own creations, they moved onto notated melodic exercises, which I created. For my beginners, we started with rhythmic examples and then moved to melodic examples. Using exactly the same melodic example for each stage, this simple, three-step sequence allowed my students to quickly make connections between what they heard and the notation on the page.

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Spring 2021

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• Teacher sings the melodic pattern with Curwen hand signs and students echo to access their aural memory. • Display and perform the same melodic exercise with solfège off the staff with rhythmic notation.

• Display the same melodic exercise on the staff (key of C only for beginners) with rhythmic and melodic notation. By adding the second step, I saw the lightbulbs go on over my students’ heads and I knew I’d found the missing link in my sight reading instruction. By using the UDL principal of providing multiple means of representation, the singers were able to access their prior knowledge and more easily decode the symbols that have previously caused so much frustration. Authentic Assessment Opportunities As they became more comfortable sight readers, I presented students with rhythmic and melodic dictation exercises to challenge them and assess their skills. Some assessments used paper and pencil, but I was also able to use the manipulatives mentioned earlier, such as heartbeat kits and flashcards, to allow students to demonstrate their understanding in different ways (multiple means of action and expression). When singing in an ensemble, it can be easy for individuals to hide within the larger group. In my role as a sight reading adjudicator, I sometime hear groups that perform very well as a large ensemble. However, when also looking at the ensemble members, it becomes apparent that many of the confident sight readers are loudly carrying the less confident students along. As educators, we must find efficient ways of assessing individual singers within the large ensemble. In order to assess individual sight singing skills regularly in an authentic context, students could record themselves using phones or a tablet in class during the daily sight reading portion of rehearsal. Train students to use the technology and list the names of 3-4 students who will record themselves each class. They simply state their name and record themselves while the class sings the sight reading exercise, then submit the recording to the teacher. This provides a non-threatening assessment of skills that is more authentic than singing alone in a room for a recorder without the context of the other voices that normally surround the singer. Alternately, students could form pairs or small groups and listen to each other sight sing, providing specific feedback and using a rubric to guide assessment and discussion. This allows students time to engage socially while learning to assess their own skills as musicians. Embracing Learner Variability Every single person in our choir, including ourselves, is a unique individual with varied preferences, approaches, and challenges in their own learning. As educators, it is our responsibility to create a welcoming environment that encourages all students to take risks and grow as musicians. By proactively designing instruction and assessment with learner variability in mind, we create opportunities for all students to be successful in our choral classrooms. The principles of Universal Design for Learning provide a framework for stuSpring 2021

dents to learn new information, demonstrate their understanding of content, and create connections to motivate and engage their interest in building their sight reading skills. The more varied, engaging, and relevant our approach to sight reading, the more invested the singers will be in building their own musical literacy!

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Endnotes 1 CAST,

“What is UDL?,” 2014, 2 CAST, “Universal Design for Learning Guidelines Version 2.2”, 2018, 3 CAST, “What is UDL?,” 2014, 4 Steven M. Demorest, Building Choral Excellence: Teaching Sight singing in the Choral Rehearsal (New York: Oxford University Press, 2001), 36. 5 Ibid. 6 Tami Mangusso, “Miss Mangusso’s Music Class,” accessed May 12, 2018, 7 Amy Abbott, “Poison Game and a New Messenger Game,” Music a la Abbott: A Kodály-Inspired Blog, February 22, 2013, About the Author: Dr. Kathryn L. Evans, Assistant Professor of Music Education at Towson University, is an active clinician, adjudicator, and honor choir conductor specializing in choral and general music education. Dr. Evans earned a Ph.D. in music education at the University of Miami. She received Master of Music degrees in both music education and choral conducting, and the Bachelor of Music Education degree, from Central Michigan University. Prior to joining the faculty of Towson University, she taught K-12 general music and choir in northern Michigan. She has served as President of the Maryland Society for Music Teacher Education. Comments are welcome and may be directed to the author at

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Time Management for Music Educators by Dr. James T. Lindroth, Northeastern State University, Tahlequah, Oklahoma


ime management can be a struggle for many people. There is not have enough time to get things done. Teachers feel this pressing time crunch more than ever because of the addition of accountability measures such as state testing and preparation, increased committee meetings, and faculty development projects added to their workday. This article aims to help educators become effective teachers by recognizing long-term goals for their classrooms and developing effective time management strategies. It is important to note that this article focuses on work-related activities and not personal/family priorities. However, the concepts and strategies in this article can be modified to include personal/family activities. Prioritizing Activities In Stephen R. Covey's 1994 groundbreaking book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, he developed a matrix to help people understand how they use their time, to prioritize activities, and to use time proactively. It is an easy system to understand and use for educators. Below is an outline of the updated matrix. We spend our time at work in one of four ways, based on two factors that define an activity: urgent and important. Box 1 lists activities or things that are urgent and require your immediate attention. Most of the things in this box cause stress because they deal with meeting deadlines/commitments, pressing problems, critical issues that arise in the classroom, and something you have postponed. These actions are urgent, but they may not be essential to your overall program or growth as a teacher. Many teachers spend most of their time here. They are always reacting rather than planning. Too much time in this box causes stress and burnout.

Box 2 deals with your vision and long-term goals. What kind of teacher do you want to be in the future? Where do you want your program to be in the future? Once you decide on your long-term goals, list activities that will bring closer to that vision. These are the essential things you find most valuable. However, these box 2 items tend to be not urgent and can quickly be put on the back burner. The goal is to spend more time in this box, which requires proactive focus and planning to reduce time spent in box 1. Box 3 lists items that need to be completed, but are less/not important. In this box are things that are short-term focused and require you to react rather than be proactive. These things appear to be worth completing, but do not help you achieve your long-term goals. Many of the actions are nothing more than interruptions. Examples of these types of interruptions for educators may include emails and text messages, irrelevant meetings, fundraising, uniform fitting, and unnecessary performances. Cut short your use of emails and text messages during the day, reduce or say no to unnecessary performances and meetings, and learn to delegate. Many of the activities in this box could be handled by someone else, such as your boosters, student leaders, co-workers, etc. People who micro-manage too much struggle in this box because they feel the need to do everything and to not trust others to complete the task. Box 4 lists all the activities that waste precious time. Today, we have more options to divert our time than ever before. Social media, internet browsing, online shopping, and smartphones tempt us to stray from the essential things we should Time Management for Music Educators, continued on next page

Box 1: Urgent (Necessity) Things that require your immediate attention. Meet important commitments/deadlines. Deal with critical issues as they arise. Something that you have postponed. Most things here cause stress and eventual burnout.

Box 3: Urgent, but not important (Interruptions) These things are short-term focused. Things that need attention but are not necessary. Things that appear to be worth doing that will not help you meet your long term goals. Cut these actions short, delegate them to others, or reject them. 28

Box 2: Important (Quality) Long term goals. Important things that will get you closer to being the educator you want to be in the future. Focus and plan proactive actions to reduce box 1 items.

Box 4: Time Wasters (Distractions) Activities that distract you from being productive at work. Social media, social emails, smartphone apps. Activities that prevent you from being productive at work. Stephen R. Covey, Time Use Matrix

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Time Management for Music Educators, continued from previous page

be doing at work. These activities are time wasters. Too much time spent doing box 1 items - dealing with urgencies and deadlines - can cause such high stress levels that any free time we have is usually spent in box 4 to forget about work. The goal is to avoid box 4 as much as possible. Planning Time is the most valuable resource. Once it is gone, you cannot get it back. Once you have placed all your activities into the four boxes, you can begin to plan. When planning, it is crucial to work from your calendar and not a to-do list. To-do lists only work in box 1; dealing with things are urgent. Organize your schedule on a weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly basis. If you organize daily, you are right back into box 1. The focus is to eliminate and manage your

activities, so most of your planning will include your box 2 activities that are important to you. Remember, these are the actions that will bring you closer to achieving those long-term goals. Journals and notebooks can also be a positive resource for identifying and developing long-term goals. Carry a notebook or use an e-notebook app to write down important ideas, teaching tips, or even thoughts that will help you reach your long-term goals in box 2. Go back and read through them often. Our minds are best used for processing ideas, not just storing information.

Our minds are best used for processing ideas, not just storing information.

About the Author: Dr. James T. Lindroth is Associate Professor of Music Education at Northeastern State University in Tahlequah, Oklahoma, where he serves as the Percussion Chair and Coordinator of Music Education. Dr. Lindroth earned his Ph.D. degree in Music Education from the University of South Florida, a Master of Music degree in Music Performance and a Bachelor of Music degree in Music Education from the University of Massachusetts, Lowell. He is an active performer and recording artist. Dr. Lindroth is in demand as an adjudicator and is a member of the Central States Judges Association, where he adjudicates music festivals throughout the United States. He is a member of the Vic Firth Education Team, and serves on the Percussive Arts Society Health and Wellness Committee. Dr. Lindroth’s scholarly research has been published in regional, national peer reviewed journals, and he has presented research and workshop sessions at music conferences in the United States and internationally. Comments are welcome and may be directed to the author at Spring 2021

Maryland Music Educator


Developing Higher-Level General Music Thinking Skills Using Questioning Levels by Angela Reisler, Retired General Music Teacher, Anne Arundel County; Past President, Maryland General Music Teachers Association This article previously appeared in Maryland Music Educator, Summer 2010, Vol. 56, No. 4


usic teachers can grow self-directed learners in the music classroom. “When thinking becomes a goal of instruction, greater value is placed on learning activities that stimulate cognitive processes” (Costa & Kallick, 2000). Some students come to class with higher level thinking skills due to interactions at home with family, yet others come ill prepared. As music teachers, we should “introduce curriculum for the habits of mind in a sequence that matches children’s development” (Costa & Kallick, 2000). “Research in classroom behavior indicates that cuing and questioning might account for as much as 80 percent of what occurs in a given classroom on a given day” (Marzano, Pickering & Pollack, 2001). Since questioning takes up such a large portion of our teaching, we need to be conscious of developing questions that lead to higher level thinking for our students. We all know the importance of linking what we are currently teaching to the prior knowledge of our students. Questioning can bring that prior knowledge to the forefront for our students; then we can build upon it with higher level questioning. The inductive learning strategy fits seamlessly with three-story questioning, a teaching strategy that builds on students’ prior knowledge and takes them sequentially through three levels. The first level questioning, acquisition and refinement of knowledge, utilizes gathering information, listing, identifying and counting skills. This leads naturally to second level questioning, extension and refinement of knowledge, that requires students to compare, classify, reason and analyze. Finally, the third level questioning incorporates meaningful use of knowledge where students will generalize, speculate, evaluate and idealize (McRel, 2008). Examples of First, Second, and Third-Story Questions To implement this inductive learning style in my general music class, I chose a lesson from my Tone Color unit. When introducing the instruments of the orchestra, I would have an exploratory experience for the students with actual instruments from each family. During this phase, to generate data during our exploration and manipulation of the instruments, I would ask First-story questions such as:

1. What is the sound producer of this instrument? 2. What is the sound starter of this instrument? 3. What is the sound amplifier of this instrument? 4. What are the four instrumental families in the orchestra?

5. Where do each of the families sit in the orchestra? To form concepts and groups, second-story questions would require some reasoning and explanation from my students. Second-story questions would be:

1. Classify the instruments into the four families. I would have cards with photos of different instruments of the orchestra. They would place them on a large seating chart of an orchestra. They could work with partners, small groups or individuals depending on the needs or choices of the class. 2. Explain why the violin sounds different from the double bass. Describe the differences and similarities between these two instruments. 3. Create a two circle thinking map of the Wind instruments of the orchestra. (Brass versus Woodwind) Third story questions would challenge my students to interpret data, evaluate, generalize and speculate. Third-story questions would be:

1. Create your own seating chart for the orchestra. How will it change the sound of the orchestra? 2. How would changing the number of instruments in each section affect the sound of the orchestra? 3. To invent a new wind instrument, what would need to create your instrument? 4. How could you change a brass instrument into a woodwind instrument? Synthesis of Knowledge Through this progression, students are taken from their prior knowledge of instruments and the orchestra, to new found knowledge through exploration using first-story questioning. Building upon this new knowledge that they have collected, they compare, classify and explain their knowledge of instruments and their families. Finally, in the third-story questioning, the students are making higher level thinking decisions which include generalizing, evaluating, and speculating on possible functions of instruments and orchestral seating. Now with the knowledge they have gained through generating data, forming concepts, and interpreting data, they can now synthesize their knowledge in creating a ...General Music Thinking Skills..., continued on next page


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...General Music Thinking Skills..., continued from previous page

musical instrument of their own using what they have learned about wind instruments. When music teachers incorporate these three tiers of questioning in the inductive learning strategy, students are given the opportunity to grow and stretch their minds and their talents. When students get to these higher levels of thinking, they not only have ownership of the knowledge, but they have developed a productive habit of mind that can be applied to everything they do and that will serve them well in their future. References Costa, A. L., & Kallick, B. (Eds.). (2000). Activating & Engaging Habits of Mind. Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervision and

Curriculum Development Laureate Education, Inc. (Executive Producer). (2008). Teacher Leadership in the Classroom: Increasing Learning and Achievement. Program 15: Inductive Learning Strategy. [Video recording]. Baltimore: Author. Marzano, R. J., Pickering, D. J., & Pollock, J. E. (2001). Classroom Instruction that Works: Research-Based Strategies for Increasing Student Achievement. Alexandria, VA: ASCD. McRel, (2008).What is Dimensions of Learning? Retrieved on February 12, 2008, from Editor’s Note: The URL listed is no longer active; however, the current URL for the organization is

About the Author: Angela Reisler is a retired Anne Arundel County general music teacher/music resource teacher and Past President of the MMEA Maryland General Music Teachers Association. She is a Human Resources Recruiting Specialist in Annapolis, Maryland. She is a National Board Certified Teacher and has served as an NBCT Candidate Support Provider. She served as an Adjunct Faculty Member for National University. Mrs. Reisler earned her BS degree in Music Education from University of Maryland College Park, and her Master of Science degree in Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment from Walden University.

Spring 2021

Maryland Music Educator



Spring 2021

Official Journal of the Maryland Music Educators Association Maryland Music Educators Association, PMB#472, 6710 Ritchie Highway, Glen Burnie, MD 21061 This issue of Maryland Music Educator will be posted at


Representing music educators, students, and advocates, NAfME is dedicated to ensuring the accessibility, presence, and perseverance of quality music programs taught by certi昀ed music educators, for all students across the nation, regardless of circumstance. Through active advocacy and collaboration, we are changing the national conversation about music’s role in delivering a well-rounded education to all students. NAfME designed the Civic Action Field Guide to help music educators and education stakeholders better understand the processes behind how public education is governed and funded, with an eye toward supporting high-quality music education in districts and at the state level across the nation. With this Guide, you will be able to: •

Understand how public education is governed and funded

Identify key elected o cials in public education and their election cycles

Identify candidates and their stances on education issues

Register to vote

Understand the well-rounded education programs found in Title I, Title II, and Title IV, and learn how to advocate for the availability of these funding streams to your music program under ESSA (the Every Student Succeeds Act)

Contact your elected o cials and advocate for music education

Download your copy today at Questions? Email or call 1-800-336-3768.