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ERIC Number: EJ782016
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Dec
Pages: 4
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-1069-7446
Demystifying Composition: {Success with Standard 4}--Give Students Ideas to Build on, and Soon They'll Be Writing Original Works
Williamson, Richard
Teaching Music, v15 n3 p26 Dec 2007
National Standard 4 calls for "composing and arranging music within specified guidelines." Composing requires teacher and students to work with a piece of music before they know its final form. Compared to performing, listening, and responding to music, the outcome of composition activities is less predictable. These activities may seem less tangible, and they may be harder for students to grasp. Teachers can demystify composition by providing concrete procedures and simple strategies. These steps, when used with age-appropriate materials, can help students of any age succeed in writing music. They can also help teachers teach principles that enhance students' listening, performing, and overall experience of music. Because composition projects develop problem-solving and communication skills, they also contribute to the broader goals of the entire curriculum. Inventing musical ideas can be a challenge for beginning composers. Some students get stuck trying to come up with just the right ideas. Many may feel as though they "don't get it" and often have trouble thinking of anything. Others string unrelated ideas together as if the goal were to say everything they ever thought in one piece. Having beginners focus on inventing ideas invites frustration and confusion. It's more important to students' overall musical growth to learn some of the ways to develop ideas. (Contains 6 figures.)
MENC: The National Association for Music Education. P.O. Box 1584, Birmingham, AL 35201. Tel: 800-336-3768; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A