Day 3 of the 30 Day Studio Refresh. How are you feeling? Did you check in on Facebook after yesterday’s challenge? If not make sure you head over to the Vibrant Music Studio Teachers group now – we don’t mind if you’re a little late. 😉
Today we’re getting to grips with some music teaching technology.
Whether it’s apps, websites or other tools, technology can be a little intimidating. Even if you’re fairly tech-savvy it takes time and effort to get to know a new bit of tech.
No matter how cool, useful, or interesting it looks…we tend to put it off.
The “To-Learn” List
I think many of us teachers end up with a music teaching technology to-learn list. Your list might be in your head, or on paper. But more than likely it’s building up and leading you to feel overwhelmed.
That’s why in today’s challenge you’re going to take something off your to-learn list. Tackle that app, visit that website, or play with your Clavinova.
If you already have a to-learn list, I think you know exactly what I’m talking about. Your mind is already going cycling through trying to decide which tech to learn about in this challenge.
If you don’t have a to-learn list, or you already cleared your’s (WOW, go you!) I’ve got some recommendations for you below. These are a few of my personal favourite iPad apps and a great place to start.
Music Teaching iPad Apps
Piano Maestro is pretty well-known in the piano teaching world by now. Many of you will already be using it in your studios. If you already gave it a good shot and decided it wasn’t the best fit, that’s cool too.
However if you’ve been eyeing Piano Maestro for a while, or have it downloaded but haven’t tried it out – today’s the day. You can explore the first 6 levels of Journey mode and limited library content without a subscription. JoyTunes has a great selection of Webinars on their site too if you want to dive in further.
The name might be a bit of a mouthfull…but this app is great fun and super useful. If you have students who just cannot keep the beat when they’re playing this is the app for you.
The app simulates a drum machine and allows you to change the metre, beat emphasis and try out different styles. Some students hate metronome work so this is a fantastic alternative.
My students love this note naming app. It is gameification personified. Students don’t even notice that they’re basically doing flashcard practice as the ninja tries to kick through blocks.
The best part of NinGenius is that there are several levels to work through – and you can keep track of multiple students’ scores. Perfect for studio use and for recommending students use at home too.
This app is extremely versatile but has a bit of learning curve. What it does is to take a chord chart (from the library or your own) and simulate a band as a backing track.
I actually got to know this app from my jazz piano teacher but it has many more uses. You can use this to practice pop, jazz, & rock songs as well as improve improvisation skills. I’ve even stripped away all the instruments to use just the drummer as a metronome alternative.
If one of your goals for the new year was to streamline your practice notes or make your students practice better, you should try Practicia. It’s currently free for teachers (still in beta) and from what I’ve seen it’s a good system.
You make students assignments, including audio, text and/or video. The students can then log their practice using the audio or video recorder in the app.
Practicia is one app that was on my personal to-learn list until I started using it last September. Being able to check in on my students practice has been very valuable for the students I’ve tried this with. Well worth a go.
- Decide what piece of tech you’re going to learn about today.
- Download or install whatever you need to get started.
- Walk through a tutorial, explore the tool, and use it just like you will in lessons.
- Plan which student you’re going to try this with first and mark it in your planner.
What music teaching technology are you going to get to know?
Let us know what you’re going to be tinkering with in the comments below or over in the Vibrant Music Studio Teachers group on Facebook. I’m excited to see what everyone tries out today!