2018 NAfME National Conference: “Amplify: Learning”


Opus 1: “Amplify: Learning”

Sponsored by Little Kids Rock

Amplify: Learning – Teaching Music as a Well-Rounded Subject.

How do we move beyond the podium and include our students as active music-makers and leaders in our ensembles as promised in our 2014 Music Standards? Scroll down to learn more.


This Opus, or learning track, will be led by Johanna Siebert and Armalyn De La O.

clinicianDr. Johanna J. Siebert is the retired Director of Fine Arts for the Webster Central School District in New York, where she supervised approximately 60 teachers in the music and visual art programs. She received a B.S. in Music Theory from Nazareth College of Rochester, School District Administrator Certificate (SDA) from the University of Rochester, and a M.A. and Ph.D. in Music Education from the Eastman School of Music. She is a member of NAfME’s Solutions Music Group, the National Coalition for Core Arts Standards’ (NCCAS) Music Standards writing team, and chair for the Preschool-Grade 2 National Core Music Standards. She is past-chair of NAfME’s Council for Music Program Leaders and the first Music Teacher Evaluation Task Force. Johanna currently chairs NYS’ Revision of the Learning Standards for the Arts (Music) and acts as Project Director for NAfME’s Library of Congress Teaching from Primary Sources (TPS) grant.

Johanna has taught at many levels, including graduate curriculum coursework at The Eastman School of Music, University of the Arts, and Nazareth College of Rochester, and in urban and suburban school districts. She has contributed chapters in professional publications on current educational trends, served on the editorial boards for the national periodicals Music Educators Journal and Teaching Music, and was named New York State’s Administrator Director of the Year for 2015 as well as Outstanding Special Educator for the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra. She is a writer for The College Board’s music learning modules, works with various school districts on curriculum writing and program reviews, and presents regularly at state and national conferences on the topics of the National Core Music Standards, artistic literacy, assessment, effective evaluation practices for arts teachers, and action research in school arts programs.

music educationArmalyn De La O is presently the Regional Director of the RIMS California Arts Project, a site of The California Arts Project for the Visual, Performing and Career Arts located at CSU San Bernardino. She is also the Coordinator for Visual and Performing Arts for the San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools Office (SBCSS), serving as the RIMS region’s arts lead for the California County Superintendents Educational Services Association Arts Initiative.

Ms. De La O has served on various committees at the national and state level including the Music Standards for the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards Committee, 2001 California Visual and Performing Arts Content Standards for Public Schools in Music Committee, and the committee to develop the program strands for the California Subject Examination for Teachers (CSET) Program in Music. Ms. De La O recently served as chair for the 2018 California Department of Education Standards Advisory Committee charged with the revision of California’s state standards in the arts. Ms. De La O was one of ten national writers for the National Core Arts Standards in Music and serves as the Band Chair for the NAfME Library of Congress Project. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Music Education and a Master’s in Education Administration. Ms. De La O taught music at the elementary and middle school levels and is currently a lecturer for the Music Department at CSU San Bernardino. Ms. De La O is the President-Elect for the California Music Educators Association and Past-President for California Art Education Association.

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Learn more about all the Opus learning tracks.

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National Standards as Foundation for a Well-Rounded Subject

Monday, November 12th, from 9:15 to 10:15 AM

Johanna Siebert, Armalyn De La O

Have you been considering how the National Standards support a well-rounded education for all students?  Have you been exploring the implementation of the standards in your music classroom with mixed success?  In this opening session for the Amplify: Learning Opus we will take time to examine our experiences and begin to discuss next steps to shift our practice so that all students can achieve success.


Learning-Centered Pedagogy in Middle School Band

Monday, November 12th, from 10:30 to 11:30 AM

David Williams, Robin Heinsen

Learner-centered classrooms and project-based learning involve students in evaluating their own progress and in making decisions. This session describes a middle school concert band project where students rehearsed/performed a piece without musical input from the teacher. Presenters will describe methodology used, share how students reacted to changes in previously established procedures, and discuss how the process evolved over the length of the project. Hear student and director interviews and a recording of the performance.


Strategic Planning for Singing and Its Assessment in General Music Music

Monday, November 12th, from 10:30 to 11:30 AM

Joanne Rutkowski

Strategies for informally and formally assessing children’s use of the singing voice in the general music classroom setting will be the focus of this session, as well as its alignment with the Pre-Kindergarten through Grade 5 Performing Standards. The nature of children’s singing voices and application of the “Singing Voice Development Measure” will be addressed.  Audio and video recorded examples of children singing and assessment activities will be included.


Responding Units & the Library of Congress Teaching with Primary Sources

Monday, November 12th, from 2:15 to 3:15 PM

Michael Apfeldorf, Cheryl Leterle, Johanna Siebert, Armalyn De La O, Robyn Swanson, Lynn Tuttle

In 2016, NAfME received a 3-year project grant from the Library of Congress (LOC) to participate in the Teaching with Primary Sources program. Focusing on helping teachers incorporate primary sources in their teaching, NAfME has created Responding-focused curriculum units connected to the LOC’s vast free resources in music that include audio, video, still images, and sheet music files. Participants will hear from LOC partners, the NAfME project director, and two LOC unit developers as they share units created by current music practitioners.


Leading to Artistic Choice & Ownership in M.S. Band & Orch.

Monday, November 12th, from 3:30 to 4:30 PM

Jenny Neff, Elizabeth Fortune

This session introduces practical teaching strategies for ensembles that help students make artistic and individual choices in their music-making, thereby taking ownership of the process. Presenters will share accessible free primary sources from the Library of Congress that inspired curriculum units for middle-school band and orchestra, focused on the Responding Artistic Process. Participants will discover new ways to incorporate the process components in their lessons/rehearsals that lead students to more meaningful music learning.


Responding Process Curricular Units for General Music

Monday, November 12th, from 3:30 to 4:30 PM

Robyn Swanson, Carrie Marsh

Learn about general music Responding units that lead students in exploring musical elements and the ways composers and performers incorporate these elements. See how students interact with music through movement, listening, and creating artwork as they verbalize their ideas and opinions of music. Discover free, accessible primary sources from the Library of Congress focused on the Responding Artistic Process. Incorporate the process components into lessons in ways that lead students to meaningful interpretations and music-making.


Practices & Effective Teaching Using Teacher Evaluation Rubrics

Monday, November 12th, from 4:45 to 5:45 PM

Glenn Nierman

What does effective standards-based teaching look like? How will we know? In this session, participants will explore teacher evaluation rubrics for examining culture and environment (Domain II) and instruction and assessment (Domain III). They will discuss student and teacher evidence based on standards-based instruction and participating teacher reflections. Participants will be able to use the tools from this session when observing the next day’s student performance groups as they work with selected ensemble directors.


Creating Made Easy

Tuesday, November 13th, from 8:00 to 9:00 AM

Denese Odegaard

Students love to create, and the 2014 Music Standards lay out a sensible process for students to learn an important component of music literacy. By creating in music class, students are more engaged, become better musicians and master higher-level thinking skills. In this session, you will be the student trying a variety of creating strategies for elementary general music and ensembles at all levels. Each strategy can be applied to any level through adaptation.


Ensemble Unity: Finding Harmony with the National Standards

Tuesday, November 13th, from 9:15 to 10:15 AM

Briana Nannen

Successfully integrating each Artistic Process of the 2014 Music Standards into ensemble experiences can seem daunting for practitioners. However, if we shift our focus to the process of learning by engaging students in Creating, Performing, and Responding, we will see that students are more invested in the learning experience, resulting in greater musical independence. This session focuses on the Creating process within a choral ensemble experience and how teachers can effectively integrate innovative ideas into their curriculum.


Improvisation within four Approaches: Dalcroze, Gordon, Kodály, Orff

Tuesday, November 13th from 9:15 AM – 10:15 AM

Julie Scott, Susan Brumfield, Diane Lange, Steve Robbins

The philosophy of the Alliance for Active Music Making states: “the music educator must have the freedom to move in and out of different approaches, guided by foundational tenets that assist the intuitive teacher in discerning the best solution to meet the learner’s needs.” Join four presenters who specialize in a different music-making approaches. Experience and activities demonstrating how teachers of Dalcroze, Gordon, Kodály, and Orff philosophies involve, engage, and inspire students to be creative as improvisers and composers.


Responding and Performing with Directors and Student Groups

Tuesday, November 13th, from 1:00 to 3:15 PM

Participating educators will experience artistic, shared, expressive decision-making both virtually and in person as they observe this year’s artist-directors leading high school, collegiate, and professional musicians in rehearsals and performances. The artist-directors will practice their inclusive rehearsal techniques in front of participating music educators. In this “rehearsal in the round,” teachers will sit around/in the ensembles, learning how the directors craft performances to be more inclusive of and engaging for the ensemble players.


Transforming Learning and Teaching through Music as a Second Language

Tuesday, November 13th from 3:30 PM – 4:00 PM

Scott Burstein

This session will focus on a unique approach to teaching music through Modern Band: Music as a Second Language, a pedagogy based off of Steven Krashen’s Second Language Acquisition methodology.  The focus of MSL is on acquiring music like a language through student-centered repertoire, approximation, creating a comfort zone, and scaffolding.  Participants will leave with an understanding of the five hypotheses of Second Language Acquisition and how they can be applied to music education.

Sponsored by: Little Kids Rock


Personal Reflection Assessment

Tuesday, November 13th, from 4:15 to 5:45 PM

Johanna Siebert, Armalyn De La O

Participants will engage in roundtable discussions and feedback about what they have learned throughout the “Amplify: Learning” Opus. They will work in small groups to share personal “aha” moments from observing the student performance groups, new ideas gleaned for their own practices, and personal action plans for their classroom instruction that include next steps for professional learning.

Learn more about all the Opus learning tracks.