BrainPop and BrainPop Jr.- www.brainpop.com, www.brainpopjr.com– Both websites have categories of videos, games, and activities in the arts. Topics covered include composers, reading music, basics like pitch and beat, musical genres, and more. Most activities are available free on the website, but more options are available to subscribers. Subscriptions are available for home, classroom, school, district, or virtual school.
Color In My Piano– colorinmypiano.com– Color In My Piano is “a place to exchange ideas and resources for piano teaching.” Joy Morin, a pianist and teacher from Ohio, has been keeping this blog since February 2009 where visitors can find resources and strategies she uses in her teaching, reflections on her lessons, printables, places for public and private comments, and even a storefront. Joy encourages visitors to keep in touch with her through many social networking sites including Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and more. I am most likely to use this resource for the “Printables” tab with free worksheets, lesson plans, games, and sheet music. The site offers many means of navigation, which appear to cause clutter at first but are very beneficial when looking for something specific. The site is clearly for use by teachers of music rather than students.
Elementary Instrumental Music Wiki- elementaryinstrumental.wikispaces.com– Created and maintained by Dr. Scott Watson, this wiki provides videos and resources on instrument care, instrument instruction, downloadable music, repertoire, and assessment for beginning instrumentalists. I will use this wiki as an introduction to band for students leaving elementary school and entering middle school band. Band teachers could use this to flip the classroom with instructional videos to be watched at home or for ideas for repertoire or assessment. Anyone can join the wiki and add materials for others to use, as well.
Fun Music Company– www.funmusicco.com– Fun Music Company specializes in prepared resources for music lessons. The company sells resources such as prepared games, worksheets, and interactive whiteboard presentations. I use this site mostly for its blog and free resources (which are difficult to find- see below.) The blog keeps music teachers up to date on the latest strategies and technological tools to use in the music classroom. In order to receive free resources, visitors need to navigate to the “Resources” tab, choose a resource, and then create a log-in to receive sample lessons. The site says you will receive five free sample lessons, but they keep coming! Lessons designed for IWB are always accompanied by a low-tech variation.
Jazz in America– jazzinamerica.com– This website should be used by all music educators for the “Journeys into Jazz” video if nothing else. This video is an animated, interactive depiction of the roots and fundamentals of jazz music narrated by Herbie Hancock. The site also provides free jazz lesson plans and resources. It has not been updated in quite some time; I began using the “Journeys into Jazz” video in 2010. The video is supposed to be Episode 1 of a series, but no subsequent episodes have been posted.
Making Music Fun– makingmusicfun.net– Making Music Fun is intended for both student and teacher use. For students: an arcade, free sheet music for different instruments at all levels of expertise, and practice charts. For teachers: free lesson plans, worksheets, and award certificates. For both: information on composers and famous musicians, songbooks, and more! I have found things on this site by happenstance before that I have been unable to retrieve from the homepage, so there is even more to it than meets the eye!
Michigan Merit Curriculum GLCES: Visual Arts, Music, Dance, and Theatre– http://www.michigan.gov/documents/mde/Complete_VPAA_Expectations_June_2011_356110_7.pdf– Within this document, grade level content expectations are broken down by subject and then by grade level (K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, H.S.). Since many music programs do not follow set curriculum, this is a very useful resource to guide curriculum construction. Standards at the high school level also reference 21st Century Skills, but according to number (i.e. 21st Century Skill I.3.) The connection to 21st century skills is great; links to the exact skills would make this resource more complete.
Music and Technology Special Interest Group (SIGMT)- www.facebook.com/SIGMT– SIGMT is a special interest group through the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE). Those who “like” SIGMT’s facebook page will receive updates on their facebook news feeds about some of the latest trends in music technology, including heads up on special prices on music software. The page is updated fairly infrequently, but when it is updated, it’s worth it!
Music Express Magazine Teacher Tips– www.musicexpressmagazine.com/teachertip/– Music Express sends out a free teacher tip every Monday during the school year to anyone who signs up on this page. The teacher tips range from links to great resources to detailed, student-approved lesson plans. Visitors can also visit the Teacher Tips web page to view tips archived all the way back to 2005.
National Association for Music Education – nafme.org– This is the official website for the National Association for Music Education. It offers a wealth of information on music education to the public– music educators, advocates, and supporters– and even more to members. It is difficult to find specific information about membership before beginning to give out personal information. Forums are open for the public to view and for members to contribute to and are a way of increasing one’s personal learning network to include more music educators. Options to connect with Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn are available. I visit this site most often to reference the National Standards for Music Education.
The Ultimate List of Online Music Education Activities– www.cornerstoneconfessions.com/2012/08/the-ultimate-list-of-online-music.html– This is a blog post in a blog called “Cornerstone Confessions,” kept up by a stay-at-home mom. This post has links to almost every web-based music activity possible, broken down into categories– aural training, composers, composition, instruments, notation, symbols/vocabulary and variety. It is a tad bit overwhelming, but will prove to be very helpful for anyone who is willing to integrate technology into their classroom one lesson at a time.