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About the Event

Presenters: Erin Ellington and Kelley Wilson

Is there a focus on literacy instruction in your building or district? Heard of the terms Science of Reading and LETRS? Did you know that your instruction in the band/orchestra/choral/general music room has direct parallels to literacy instruction? Yes! These are concepts you are already teaching! For this reason, we must build a common language around literacy for both music and classroom educators. In this session we will examine neuroscience, literacy instruction, and direct connections between literacy in language and literacy in music and how this benefits our students in the music room and beyond. This session will utilize music and literacy theory to identify a common language between music and language literacy instruction while highlighting work that music educators already do in their classrooms. Finally, we will connect how a common language for music and language literacy has the potential to increase educator satisfaction, advance advocacy, and benefit students. Participants will have an opportunity to develop next steps to harmonize the connections between language and music literacy in their classrooms.

Erin Ellington HeadshotErin Ellington is an adjunct instructor at Appalachian State University with 18 years of experience as a PreK-8 music educator with experience teaching in a variety of settings across North Carolina, Illinois, and Indiana. Some of her experiences include itinerant teaching in a rural school surrounded by tobacco fields, starting a music program in an urban college-prep charter school, teaching on a stage, on a cart, and in a cafeteria, and serving in roles including bus driver, substitute teacher, teacher assistant, and music educator. Additionally, she served as clinical educator for pre-service teachers for Appalachian State University, on the Lighthouse Team for a Leader in Me school, and as a Framework Specialist, developing content and lessons for arts educators aligned with her district’s teacher evaluation tool. Erin is certified in Orff Levels I-III and is interested in instructional practices that allow students to develop social and emotional skills while exploring music. She was named the 2020 Watauga County Schools Teacher of the Year and the 2021 Burroughs Wellcome Fund Northwest Region Teacher of the Year.

Kelley Wilson headshotKelley Wilson works for the Office of Early Learning with the Department of Public Instruction. She started her career as a kindergarten teacher in 2004 and earned a master’s degree in reading education from Appalachian State University in 2007. Her teaching career spanned fifteen years in Watauga County as a classroom teacher and reading specialist. As an adjunct instructor at Appalachian State University, Kelley taught Foundations of Literacy. She was also a student teacher supervisor, supporting elementary education majors. As a learning coach for North Carolina Education Corps, Kelley assisted tutors in the western region of North Carolina.

NAfME presents this live virtual event at no charge to all as a service to the music education profession. To register, you must enter your NAfME member information or create a nonmember account. After registering, check your email for instructions. A recording of this program will be available to all registrants for one week following the live event. Members can also view archived NAfME webinars in the NAfME Academy. The views expressed are those of the presenter; they do not necessarily reflect the views of NAfME.

April 2024 Teaching Music

Start Date

March 27, 2024

End Date

March 27, 2024

Start and End Time

7:00 pm - 8:00 pm (ET)

Event Category

  • Live Virtual
  • Webinar


  • Band
  • Choral
  • General Music
  • Orchestra
  • Show Choir

Teaching Levels

  • PreK-12

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