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Commentary

  • Essential Elements Interactive: The Powerful Assessment Tool for Everyone

    Steve Smith | April 7, 2021Hal Leonard’s Steve Smith details how the new Essential Elements Interactive (EEi) online music resource can provide powerful assessment opportunities. Read More...
  • Musical Orchestrators of Broadway’s Golden Era: Another Op’nin’, Another Show

    Ph.D. | April 6, 2021In SBO's April issue, Dr. Keith Mason reveals how instrumental music students can benefit from analyzing the work of Broadway musical orchestrators and their creations. Read More...
  • Seeing Beyond Our 2020 Vision

    Robert W. Smith | April 6, 2021Robert W. Smith takes a clear-eyed look at how teachers were required to re-invent music education this past year, and what it will take to ensure that students have the promise of a better (and more musical) tomorrow. Read More...
  • Hypermobility in Middle School Band Students

    Melissa Hatheway Lewis | March 6, 2021In SBO's March 2021 issue, Melissa Hatheway Lewis invites readers to discover how the Beighton Test can be used to spot hypermobility in Middle School instrumental students to help them choose the right instrument and avoid injury and pain. Read More...
  • Inescapably Homeschooled in Music

    Sandra Jordan | March 6, 2021How Children of Professional Musicians View the World Today Not all music educators teach in a band room, on the marching field, in a private studio or on Zoom. Some inadvertently homeschool their children in inescapable ways: they are professional musicians. They practice at all hours, singing, tapping, scoring, running scales. Their music weaves its […] Read More...
  • The Story Behind Flex-Band

    Michael Sweeney | March 6, 2021In 2006, Google purchased internet upstart YouTube, NASA launched its New Horizons probe aimed at Pluto, and in pop music Daniel Powter’s “Bad Day” was on top of the charts. Also in 2006, the first titles in Hal Leonard’s “Flex-Band” series rolled off the press, including “Mission: Impossible Theme” and “Pirates of the Caribbean.” Long […] Read More...
  • Music Education in August 2021

    John Mlynczak | March 6, 2021This school year has forced both educators and students to adopt new methods for learning music, both at home and in person. How will our newly acquired skills and technologies influence our classrooms in August of 2021? While teaching music during the COVID pandemic has been extremely challenging, we must also recognize that it gave […] Read More...
  • Take a Deep Breath and Blow, Part 2

    John Almeida | January 8, 2021

    Reinforcement, Reinforcement, Reinforcement!

    Wouldn’t it be easier if we had signs that we could hold up in front of our students each time we needed to repeat ourselves? Just think of all the vocal rest our vocal cords would get.

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  • Navigating Copyright During COVID-19

    Chrissy Swearingen | January 8, 2021

    Besides everything else, 2020 has brought us a rich new vocabulary of words and phrases we use daily, like “social distancing,” “asymptomatic” and “flatten the curve.” For music educators, the list might also include “virtual choir,” “bell cover,” and “choir mask!”

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  • Trumpet No Limits: Take a Deep Breath and Blow!, Part 1

    John Almeida | December 3, 2020

    All of us who are involved in teaching the trumpet to players of all ages speak so often about using air as a means to producing the desired sound. In my teaching, I have a statement that I use consistently, and I refer to it as The Six No’s. No air, no vibration; no vibration, no sound; no sound, no music.

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  • #TeachersAreEssential: Music Educators are #CriticallyVital

    Margaret Campbelle-Holman | December 3, 2020

    The superhero description “faster than a speeding bullet” belongs to Superman. Let’s consider that phrase as we figuratively turn our heads from one side to the other: looking back to March 2020’s abrupt end of schools nationwide - to now, the end of 2020.

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  • Performance Based Assessments: Enhancing Effectiveness

    Lisa Martin | October 28, 2020

    In the current era of testing and accountability, instrumental music educators must document evidence of individual student growth. The majority of this data is often derived from individual performance-based assessments.

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