I thought I would talk about some of my favorite tools for music teachers today. These aren’t just for elementary teachers but work really well for those of you with older kids too. All the links to the items I’ll be talking about are at the bottom of the post so you can find them all in one place.
I am on my computer all day. Even with kids in the room, I’m projecting stuff that isn’t in Google Drive, playing music that is in iTunes, and in my downtime: attendance, lesson planning, grading, emails…and on and on. I carry my charger, a portable hard drive and a few random tools in this pencil case I got on Amazon a few weeks ago. It’s awesome because there is a place for pens, a stylus, and two ways to open it. I think I actually need a few more to organize my life!
- Keep yourself on track when you want to finish something (like lesson plans) in a certain amount of time.
- Send a kid to a practice room with a timer.
- Time centers by flipping the cube every time you switch. No fumbling to reset.
- If a kid needs a time out/moment to calm down.
- Give a pitch to a choir – use your ears to find the interval.
- Check instrumental tuning.
- Don’t be confined to your piano.
- Interval practice for choir.
It’s portable, non-electronic, and waterproof. Why don’t you have one for emergencies?
These checklists are one of my favorite tools. I keep the pages I use as separate files so that I can write right on them in my iPad. This is how I store all my to-do lists. I use a PDF annotator (I love PDF Expert), delete the pages I don’t want and save it. I’ve saved different parts of the file as different pages so that I can save them individually. One for the musical, one for my random to-do’s that I jot down during the day so I can add them to To-DoIst later (this app is AMAZING!) and even for different performances such as concerts and festivals. If I have them all stored in one device, it helps so much when I need to pull it up, but what’s great about those PDF readers is that you can save them in the cloud!
In addition to these great items, I’d like to officially welcome you to try out my brand new YouTube Channel and Podcast, The VIP Music Room. I will be posting all my blog posts now in both places so that you can get great teacher tips the way YOU need. Don’t have time to read often? Listen in the car to my *SHORT* podcasts. My commute is only 10-15 minutes and longer doesn’t work for me, so I want to make sure those of you with a short drive don’t have a lot of listening left over. I like listening and having something to reference while I do because I am usually multitasking (…I know..) so if you are like me, hop over to YouTube to listen and have slides.
You can also download the show notes with all the links and ideas I talk about in each blog post.
I hope you find these tools useful! Have a great week!