The good folks at Fun Music Co. are hosting the Virtual Music Education Conference again this year, and the line up of speakers looks pretty interesting.

You get to hear from one of the world’s top education speakers, Todd Whitaker, who will be presenting, “What Great Teachers Do Differently”, and Janice from Fun Music Co. will share a few tips on applying these ideas to the general music classroom. The conference will also feature a top neuroscientist researching music education, Dr. Nina Kraus, and include music education experts like Artie Almeida, John Jacobson and ‘Standard of Excellence’ band book series author, Bruce Pearson. The conference will also offer hands-on implementation sessions for Garage Band for teaching composition, Ukulele in the classroom, and teaching with Boomwhackers.

Interested in a program guide?
Virtual Music Education Conference 2016 | Program Guide


Clarinet player

Signed into law last December was a rewrite to the No Child Left Behind initiative naming music as a subject that should be included in all K-12 schools to satisfy a well-rounded education. This rewrite not only gives music and arts instructors the ability to prevent their programs from being cut from the school budgets, but also provides access to state and federal funds.

Music educators now have reason to celebrate, and students have finally won the opportunity for a balanced and science supported education. For year music teachers have understood the value of music education. In more recent years countless research studies have support what we always believed to be true.

Now is the time for public school music educators to step out boldly with sound programs. Programs that are grounded in creative thinking and engagement in higher order thinking skills. Our efforts will make a lasting difference in the lives of our students and the longevity of this decision.


Do you include music lab time with your students each week? Weather you set up a lab with computers, software, apps, headphones, keyboards, worksheets and a dedicated area, or just informally include “lab time at the end of student lessons, the time spent is well worth it.

The benefits of lab time include:

  • Opportunity to drill note names of new notes introduced during the lesson (or ones that aren’t quite learned)
  • Opportunity to introduce intervals and chord building
  • Opportunity to explain key signatures
  • Opportunity to quiz music terms
  • Opportunity of ear training
  • Composing

Whatever your purpose, it’s focused time to drill the things that need to be introduced, or just need a little extra attention.

If you’re interested in a little extra income, you might consider a “music camp” for your students. One or two weeks a year that focus on music lab related topics, including music theory, music composers, ear training and music composition.


Browse other “The Piano Student” posts:

The Ultimate Music Lesson Lab Resource Guide | Free Online Resources
Sight Reading | Guiding Music Student Toward Success
Brainy Benefits of Music Education
Poke-the-Key Game | Keyboard Key Identification



Research studies for awhile now have been revealing links between music education and academic performance. The following study is yet another reason music should be supported in our schools.

According to the The Journal of Research in Music Education, third-and fourth-graders in high-quality school music programs scored higher on standardized tests, compared to students in schools with deficient music education programs — 22 percent better in English and 20 percent better in math. Even students with lower-quality instrumental programs scored higher in English and math than students who had no music education at all, the study showed.


Browse other “The Piano Student” free sheet music posts:

The Benefits of Music Lesson Lab Time
The Ultimate Music Lesson Lab Resource Guide | Free Online Resources
Brainy Benefits of Music Education
Poke-the-Key Game | Keyboard Key Identification


So much could be said about music’s role in education. The best reasons of which is it seems to effect our kids in so many positive ways.

“Music is a magical gift we must nourish and cultivate in our children, especially now as scientific evidence proves that an education in the arts makes better math and science students, enhances spatial intelligence in newborns, and let’s not forget that the arts are a compelling solution to teen violence, certainly not the cause of it!” Michael Greene, Recording Academy President and CEO at the 42nd Annual Grammy Awards, February 2000.

Congratulations parents for supporting your child’s interest in music!



According to a new study that was presented on May 6, 2009 at Johns Hopkins University’s (Learning, Arts, and the Brain) we now have the most significant evidence yet to suggest that arts education can improve learning.

The study discovered that “children who receive music instruction for just 15 months show strengthened connections in musically relevant brain areas and perform better on associated tasks, compared with students who do not learn an instrument.”

Another study presented at the Johns Hopkins University summit asserted that “children who receive training to improve their focus and attention perform better not only on attention tasks but also on intelligence tests.”

Gottfried Schlaug, a professor of neurology at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Harvard Medical School and co-author of the music instruction study said “It’d be difficult to find another activity [besides music training] that takes up so much real estate in the brain.”

Science continues to confirm the importance of music education.  Congratulation to those of you that continue to support music education in the schools, and continue to drive your child to music lessons.



“Whether it’s chorus, band or just violin lessons, music impacts Americans’ lives. While singing in a chorus or playing an instrument is fun, it can also provide important skills like creative problem solving that can help lead to higher education and incomes as well as personal fulfillment.”

Read Harris Poll


The study indicates:

1) The amount of education your child receives seem to be directly linked to their future tendancy toward earning advanced degrees.

2) Participation in music lessons or a neighborhood band had the highest impact on personal satisfaction.

3) More people participate in vocal groups than in any other of performance ensemble.

4) Almost half of people surveyed who participated in a music program say music education was important in giving them the ability to strive for personal excellence in a group situations.

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