Question 9, 10, 11:
These past few months have taught me a lot about myself as both a music teacher and learner. Beginning the course I had no idea what I would do if I was given a placement where I would have to teach music. While right now I definitely cannot say that I would be completely confident as a music teacher, I can say that I now know where to find the resources I would need to plan a unit and how to use these tools to help my future students learn.
I think my greatest strength as an educator who will teach music is my humility. I will admit that I am far from perfect and that music is not the subject that I would lead with, however, I am always open to suggestions and help from both students and fellow teachers. I will always do my best to use cross-curricular influences to guide me through what I will be teaching in music lessons, and will always appreciate student feedback and take it to heart. By doing this I am allowing myself to become a lifelong music learner who is passionate to never stop asking questions. I may not be the most musically inclined, but I am a hard worker when it comes to learning subjects that I at first do not understand.
When I think of myself as a future educator teaching music I think of a lot of fun and silliness. I think that music is a great outlet for many students to become more vocal and active during their school day: you will rarely see my music class sitting down at desks. There are definitely creative ways to teach students musical basics that involve the movement of the whole body. Having another class sitting down is not what students need in their daily schedules and music is the perfect opportunity to create activities which engage the mind and the body while still promoting learning. An example of this would be jumping once for a “ta” and twice for a “ti-ti” when going through the lyrics of a song. This is a simple change but will allow my students to be engaged while also burning off energy which has built up throughout the day. I hope to get to know my student’s needs and interests in order to create lesson plans and find songs that would interest them, thus creating an environment which is perfect to facilitate their learning.
My greatest area of growth during the course has been in the realm of different ways to demonstrate sounds found in pictures. This is a very specific topic that we covered in the course, but, other than my ukulele, it is where I saw the most personal growth. Interpreting a picture in sounds could involve body percussion, mouth percussion, instruments, or tools around the room. We did a few days on this in class where we were shown pictures and told to create the sounds which we believed would be heard if we were placed inside. At first I was very uncomfortable with this concept and had no clue what was being asked of us. Everyone started making sounds and I felt lost! After a few more activities I started to love putting myself into images and seeing what different sounds I could come up with, now find myself doing this while reading books to myself. This is a fun way to demonstrate music vocabulary for students, my group even tried to incorporate it into our lesson plan we presented to the class!
I was very uncomfortable throughout our first few music classes as I had no idea what was expected of me or what I was supposed to learn. I am just now realizing that while, for the most part, it did not feel like I was learning at all, those were the moments where I was learning the most. I now have a large variety of songs that I can sing with many grades, I understand how to incorporate music into different subjects like math and science, I know how to make lesson plans, music terminology, and I know where to ask for help (because most likely I will still need it).