Mar 9, 2010

Days 18-21 - 3/8-11

I knew this was likely to happen, but I was not sure when it would.  My technology quest has hit a bump in the road.  I am still using technology like my iPhone and LCD projector, but these tools are just becoming part of my daily routine.  They are becoming common-place in my rehearsal, much like the chalkboard, tuners, and pencil sharpener that are used everyday.  I am not lessening their importance in the roles they play, but they are just becoming part of what I do everyday.  I do think this is a good thing because it is becoming second nature to use these tools. How great would it be if all teachers were using technology and it was just "how things are done".  Man . . . what a school that would be!

This bump-in-the-road has allowed me to really think about how I should be using technology.  Technology is cool because of all the bells and whistles, but how can I use technology to engage and make real learning happen in my classroom.  The wiki project and Lewis & Clark IDU were the perfect example of this, but they were an enormous undertaking.  I can not realistically do that throughout the year.

So, I am now challenged with finding ways to incorporate Web 2.0 tools as I plan ahead to the 2010-11 school year.  My colleagues and I have begun to analyze our curriculum and find areas where we can realistically implement effective uses technology.  Some of the tools we have discussed include Jing, VoiceThread, Wallwisher, and SmartMusic.  And, like the good techie I am, we are using Google Docs as a collaboration tool to share our ideas with each other!

With three performances occurring in the next two weeks, I may not be able to incorporate technology into every rehearsal.  After all, band is still a performance-based activity.  It does not matter how much technology we use in class, the band still has to sound good at the end of the day.

Here is a notation activity that I offered as extra-credit this week:
  1. Use any scale(s).  My students used concert C, G, and D major scales.
  2. Rewrite each scale using Noteflight.  Scales must be written ascending & descending.
  3. Use the correct key signature.
  4. Any time signature and rhythm can be used. 
  5. Finished project can be emailed or printed out.
Examples of Student Work from Lia: 


  1. Record rehearsals and listen back. Are you set up for that with a decent mic?

  2. What about trying indaba? Record the rehearsal then have students post comments about the recording in the timeline on indaba.