Lecture 5 Music 1Y (&c)

April 5, 2010

Missed the first half Roland drum lab demo this week, as we took our Year 11 and 12 music students to see the Encore concert in at the Opera House. Only got back at 6-ish.

But I heard all about it from the other students, and then watched James’s summary version. I love the way James demonstrated his under 10 mins putting together of the video, literally thrown together as he taught it with preset soundtrack and unscripted voiceover.

This stuff is great encouragement, because the risk of technology is having hours and hours of footage which takes hours and hours and hours to edit just right. But who has the time? So I’m loving the inspiration to be quick and dirty with technology. I’m hoping to do the same with online resource development. And with blogs and stuff I’m resisting the temptation to edit and re-edit, just trying to put it down as it comes and maybe fixing a few typos, and that’s it.

Challenge-based learning

I’m intrigued by Apple’s attempts to get on the learning-in-the-21C bandwagon. Interesting model they’ve created. Must look into it more. I’m pretty intrigued by all alternative pedagogies, as the outcomes-based stuff seems to me to be so stifling. I think all learning frameworks should maximise the opportunity for students to autonomously learn and get inspired by their whole world. Any kind of framework should never be a restriction: resistance may be futile but I’m resisting!

On another matter I like the way we can use the capitalists’ gear whilst subverting their money-making aspirations to our own educational ones. So they get to shift a bit of product but their agenda doesn’t have to drive ours, which after all is to teach all the world’s music as best we can.

In this regard I also like James’s description of the process at his school where students are encouraged not only to use technology but to use pen and paper should they feel more comfortable. Also that composing with pencil score paper is great as it privileges your imagination over some preset sound world that your music software may be locked into.

Arriving at the end of term

I’ve arrived at the end of my own school term totally wrung out, having worked on some great music, in the last week or three, including for the school’s Easter chapel, where we did a great version of Lenny Kravitz’s Empty Hands, suggested by our dance teacher who choreographed to it. Great success, and it fitted the theme of the chapel which included some more conventional Easter song elements.

Had a great Passover gig at a friend’s church where they did a Jewish style with unleavened bread etc on Easter Thursday. And my daughter and I did some klezmer tunes: great experience doing a family duo!

Thinking back too over the uni term and school term I’ve had some fantastic learning opportunities and synergies between the MTeach learning, my own learning and my teaching at school, and the musical groups I’ve been involved with at school.

Andrew Tredinnick

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