Professional Development

As an educator, I have never understood why young percussionists are not taught more about musicality. My wife is a flute teacher, and she teaches musicality to kids in sixth grade. Why is it that percussionists get to college and still do not know the basics about shaping a line?
"I'm kind of hard-wired to do things at a pretty intense level," says Aaron Tindall. "In the low brass field, you just have to be relentless."  And Tindall expects the same passion from his students.
You became an instrumental educator because you love music and have a passion for sharing your talent with students. When your job inspires you, teaching may not even feel like work.
In music, tone is distinct and identifiable, and when played correctly and in harmony within an ensemble, it sets the overall mood and quality of a performance. However, mastering tone does not come easily.
I am interviewing prominent people, some in the music industry, others not. For my first Q&A, I talked to prolific GRAMMY®-winning composer and conductor Eric Whitacre.
In the blog post, The Drive of Top Tubist Aaron Tindall, Tindall describes how he has high expectations for his students. Tindall, associate professor of tuba and euphonium at the University of Miami Frost School of Music and principal tubist for the Sarasota Orchestra, builds his pedagogy around his "10 Rules of Play."
As music teachers, we often focus on the aspects of program development that we can directly control — what and how we teach. We consider the value or danger of starting strings students using tapes, whether or not the French embouchure truly eliminates biting on the clarinet, when and how solfège should be introduced, and why every or no brass player should employ free-buzzing exercises.
In the blog post, Case Study: Music Program Teamwork in Tennessee, we learned how the band, orchestra and choir directors at Ravenwood High School in Brentwood, Tennessee, often plan, brainstorm and collaborate during the only time the three of them are free­ — their common lunch period. Chris Janowiak, Cassandra Brosvik and Lauren Ramey use this same creative planning with their students.
Yamaha Master Educator Anthony Maiello is a University professor and professor of Music at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia. Below, he pens a letter to his younger self, sharing advice, anecdotes and inspiration for a fulfilling career in music education.
Good things come in waves. After a few years at a new high school, your marching band is going great. The booster program is very active and has been raising money. It's going so well that your new plans include purchasing a front ensemble.

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