Philosophy of Music Education

Ignacio Estrada once said, “If a child cannot learn the way we teach, then maybe we should teach the way they learn.” This statement should be taken to heart by all teachers that aspire to have an impact on all of their student’s lives. Every student has the right and ability to learn even if they carry a label such as “gifted”, “learning disabled”, “mentally retarded” or “ADHD”. I feel strongly that all teachers must adapt their teaching styles to make sure that they are reaching out to all of their students and that they are all given an equal chance to learn. In my future music classroom I hope to use a variety of teaching strategies so that none of my students are left behind.

In an ensemble setting it is very challenging to make sure that all types of learners are given the opportunity to succeed, but I am ready for this challenge. In my ensembles I will utilize a variety of strategies such as having the students sing their parts in an instrumental ensemble, playing a recording of the music for the students, use visual aids to help my visual learners, and having the students clap or chant the rhythm in a piece of music. By incorporating all of these strategies I hope to be able to reach all of my learners, and if not, I will determine a way to present the material so that nobody is being left behind. I do not just believe that all students should be given the chance to learn; I also believe that the learning process should be fun and rewarding for all of the students.

I feel that teachers are obligated to make sure their classroom is an inviting, enjoyable place to be while still making sure all students are learning. The classroom should be a place where the students like to go and feel comfortable when they are there. I want my future classroom to be full of color, posters, instruments, and to have a lot of free open space so we can move around. Not only should the students feel comfortable in the classroom, but the parents should also. I want my future parents to feel comfortable with their child being in my classroom and I want both the parents and students to feel comfortable talking to me about anything whether class related or not. Teachers are obligated to make sure that all of their students are learning, but it is also their responsibility to foster a sense of classroom community. In my future classroom one of my main rules will be that everyone respects each other meaning that the students respect me, the students respect each other, and that I as the teacher respect all of my students. No matter how many teaching strategies you use there must be a sense of classroom community in order for your students to learn. The teacher’s main responsibility and duty is to make sure that all students get an equal and quality education. I also feel that teachers need to get to know their students interests and hobbies. If the teacher knows the interests of his or her students they are then better able to relate to them. This may be especially important if you have a student that is not interested in music. If you know what they are interested in you may be able to relate that to music and help the student to learn music and maybe enjoy it in the process. As a future music educator I want my students to enjoy music, but more importantly I want them all to learn about music and be able to take something away from my class.

I feel that it is important for music educators to remember that not all of your students are going to become future musicians or continue to play and instrument or sing for the rest of their life. A music teacher’s job is not to create future musicians, but instead, to instill musical knowledge into the students so that they can apply it and further develop it if they so desire. While I would love for many of my future students to become musicians I need to think realistically and make sure that I am implanting the basics of music into every one of my students instead of focusing on creating lifetime musicians. These basic skills that need to be given to our students can be accomplished at any age level and in any type of music classroom. In my future classroom I want to make sure that giving the students these basic skills is one of my primary concerns.

As a future music educator I will have many duties and responsibilities, but I believe the most important is to make sure that all of my students are included in my classroom and are given the opportunity to learn and excel in music. My goal as a teacher is to not teach just how I like to, but to always be altering my teaching style so that my students are benefiting, learning and retaining as much as possible.

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