May 13, 2015
Top Websites for Music Educators
The internet is a wonderful resource for just about everybody, regardless of his or her interests or profession. Knowing this, it’ll come as no surprise that the internet has proven to be an excellent resource for people who teach music professionally. There is no shortage of websites dedicated to making your job as a music teacher easier, no matter which instrument is your specialty. We thought it’d be helpful to collect some of the best ones, for any music educator that might be looking to the internet for help. If you’re a music educator looking for some helpful online resources, look no further!
The carefully researched and commercial-free website K-12 Resources for Music Educators is about as straightforward as they come. The site, which is little more than a collection of extremely valuable links, has been designed by public school teacher Cynthia Mazurkiewicz Shirk of Mankato Minnesota to provide music educators who teach K-12 with whatever information they need. Whether you’re looking for links to professional associations or organizations related to music teaching, printable posters, links to sites with useful or informative articles, and many, many more, you’ll find it on this website.
If you teach K-12, whether it’s a band class, chorus, orchestra, or simply teach music in the classroom, this site has almost everything you need. It does take some time to sift through, as the organization of the site is simply alphabetical, but you’ll certainly find everything that you need. Recognized by universities, school districts, and music organizations throughout the world, and in existence for over ten years, K-12 Resources for Music Educators continues to grow and add value all the time.
Known to be one of, if not the most comprehensive collection of classical music online, Classical Archives is an excellent resource for music teachers. Classical Archives is “a major award-winning cultural site which provides extensive indexes, search and contextual data accessible via a navigation designed by musicologists for novices and experts alike.” The site offers hundreds of thousands of classical music files in a variety of formats. Because listening to some of the best and most important music ever created is such a vital part of music education, this is a site that every music educator should make use of. Instill a passion for the classics by exposing your students to this wonderful resource.
Musictheory.net is a website which offers free online lessons, exercises, and tools that are incredibly helpful for music teachers and students. The free lessons section of the site offers lessons starting with the basics such as “The Staff, Clefs, and Ledger Lines,” “Note Duration,” and “Measures and Time Signature” and more before moving on to more advanced lessons such as “Key Signature Calculation,” “Triads in Second Inversion,” and “Using Neapolitan Chords.” As you can see, these lessons provide an incredible range of information that will help new and experienced students.
The free online exercises section is separated into staff identification, keyboard identification, fretboard identification, and ear training exercises. For music teachers, there’s also a very handy exercise customizer which allows you to create a permanent link to a customized exercise for your students. Finally, musictheory.net provides two premium apps which are Theory Lessons and Tenuto. Theory Lessons is an enhanced version of the free online lessons that can be used on iOS devices. Tenuto is an enhanced version of the exercises and calculators which can be purchased for use on iOS devices. Integrating musictheory.net into your music lessons will prove to be a helpful and inexpensive way to add value and convenience for your students.
Teachnology is a website which provides free and easy-to-use resources for teachers of many different disciplines. The music section on Teachnology offers a great variety of different lessons and exercises for students that are separated by age group. There are sections for kindergarten to second grade, third to fifth grade, middle school, and high school. These lessons cover many different instruments as well as general music lessons that students learning any instrument can get value from. Teachnology also provides links to other resources for music teachers.
Bulletin Boards for the Music Classroom is a website created by Lady-Tracy King. It’s a great place for music classroom bulletin boards as well as a ton of other helpful resources. If you’re looking for Music bulletin boards provide an excellent visual guide for younger students, and can be a really engaging piece to include in classrooms. On the site, you can download ready-made bulletin board kits, worksheets, workstations, listening activities, writing activities, and powerpoint presentations to use in your class. One of the best things about Bulletin Boards for the Music Classroom is that it’s totally free, and enthusiasts contribute new boards all the time.
TI:ME, which stands for the Technology Institute for Music Educators, is a non-profit organization that’s dedicated to assisting music educators utilize technology to more effectively teach music. TI:ME regularly develops educational programs and resources which cover topics like notation, sequencing, instructional software, and many other areas which can be useful to music teachers. It’s a membership-based organization, but their website offers a great deal of information for free. If you want information about upcoming conferences, workshops, and other great offerings from TI:ME, you only have to pay $40 annually.
The internet has proven to be an excellent resource for music educators. These websites, as well as many, many more help to make the job of teaching music more engaging and effective for all students. For even more helpful music educator articles, check out our Educator Interviews section.
Photo via woodleywonderworks, CC