About me


I am a music educator that teaches band and general music for grades 4-6 in Rockland County, NY. I completed my bachelors in music education through SUNY Fredonia and specialized in the saxophone. My primary focus in my teaching is to foster an intrinsic motivation in my classroom culture. I am hoping to continue developing a highly engaging curriculum through the combination of personal experience and my Curriculum Design and Instructional Technology Masters courses through SUNY Albany.

My Topic/Purpose

Closing the gap between sound and sight.

My mini course will focus on music learning and how to effectively transition to be able to associate sounds with symbolic association. This is a multi-step process that follows research backed theories and data.

Needs Assessment

Part I: Intent

Music is a language and has it's own set of rules and vocabulary. To use music communicably with other musicians an understanding of how to read music notation becomes and important factor. Similar to the English language, speaking and reading go hand in hand in understanding the concepts and patterns.

Part II: Gather Information

This course is geared around using google slides as a resource. I have created a survey to find who is using google slides, and how much you currently know. A link can be found below.

Link to survey

Part III: Survey Results

Four other teachers participated in my survey resulting in the following data. 1 out of the 4 teachers use google slides every day. All 4 of the teachers are familiar with Google Slides 0 of the teachers have used google slides to "gameify" their classroom.

After viewing these results and reflecting on course materials I have decided to change my topic to the the topic described the "Intent" part of this section. I will still use google slides as a resource, but the focus will no longer be "How to enhance use of google slides" and instead be about understanding music as a language.

Analysis of the Learner and Context

1. Instructional Problem

Most people connect with music, but attrition is a big issue of music programs. "Frequently, they are expected to learn to read music notation while simultaneously developing basic physical performance skills by committing to a disciplines practice schedule". (Rachel M. Gamin, Teacher Perceptions Regarding Attrition in Beginning Instrumental Classes (2005)) This journal highlights the details of where attrition stems from and one of those reasons is student frustrations with the music language.

2. What is to be learned?

Learning how to read music using systems that can effectively precede standard notation.

3. The Learners

Beginning band students are the learners in focus for this mini-course. Every beginning band student is usually full of excitement the first half the the year, because they have a new shiny new sound maker that they are going to learn how to play. Around half-way through the school year, students have a tendency to become unmotivated and the spark that was once there quickly fades. This mini-course will focus on music reading methods that promote continuous progress and most importantly, discovery.

4. Context for Instruction

This is a music based mini-course, but I will do my best to make connections to other subject areas so it can be understood from all educators, not just music educators.

5. Goals of this Mini-Course

The goal is to provide students with methods they can use to continually grow as a musician keeping them engaged and become a life long music learner. This approach will combine sound with movement, colors, symbols, and even emotions to guide students into understanding this new language they have decided to learn.

Performance Objectives

Upon completion of this topic, the participant will

...Develop music reading strategies that will help their elementary students improve music reading comprehension.

...Assess and refine their curriculum to fit their personal teaching style and student needs.

Task Analysis


In this course, participants will learn music reading strategies that will help their elementary students improve music reading comprehension. End-of-Course Objectives The participant will demonstrate music teaching strategies to enhance student’s music reading comprehension. The participant will customize and apply music reading strategies based on their personal teaching style and needs.

Performance Objectives

Unit 1 Learning Solfege:

  • Participant will review/or become accustomed to the musical “solfege” system.
  • Participant will select a progressive series of tunes to use within their curriculum.

Unit 2:

  • Participant will translate their tunes from standard notation to solfege system.
  • Participant will organize their songs by difficulty.

Unit 3:

  • Participant will create visual resources for their students to refer to for the song learning process.
  • Participant will choose musical vocabulary to introduce throughout the curriculum.

Unit 4:

  • Participant will create standard notation for each tune chosen.
  • Participant will connect solfege to standard notation.

Unit 5:

  • Participant will create a rubric to assess student achievement on music comprehension.
  • Participant will review and refine curriculum based on assessment results.

Essential Prerequisites

  • Participant will have intermediate to advanced music reading comprehension.
  • Participant can distinguish various musical vocabulary that they choose to teach in their curriculum.
  • Participant has the ability to sing and match basic pitches.

Supportive Prerequisites

  • Participant has extensive experience on a primary instrument.
  • Participant has an intrinsic desire for growth as an educator.
  • Participant has a passion for music and music learning.

Curriculum Map

Music Curriculum Map.jpg

References and Resources