3 Reasons Why Now — More Than Ever — America Needs Music in its Schools

For the first time ever, music is now cited in federal statute as a stand-alone subject in schools. The timing could not be better.  After all, provision for the arts in school curricula should be a no-brainer requirement of a well-rounded education.  However, just because federal law is changing does not mean that schools are going to immediately adjust their schedules accordingly. Our information age has become central (for better or worse) […]


Why Scheduling More Performances Will Save Your Child’s Musical Life (and Your Music Program)

We are a few months into a new school year.  Has your child had a performance yet? When students open their instrument case for the first time, they are excited to begin their musical journey.  They also want to become good at playing their instrument.  But it doesn’t take long for most students to realize that creating beautiful sounds on an instrument isn’t as easy as it looks — and […]


Are We Really Teaching Students to be Creative When We Teach the Arts in Schools?

I believe we are sitting on the precipice of whole school reform in our country. Standardized testing has hit a tipping point; schools are still far behind when it comes to teaching critical twenty-first century skills; and there is a growing divide between the haves and have-nots that threatens to alter our society in ways we are not equipped to handle. But if our school system is dismantled tomorrow and built […]


What Percentage of Students are “Meant” to be Playing a Musical Instrument in School?

If we take a moment to look at school music programs around our nation, we may be inclined to believe that music instrument instruction is a luxury reserved for a select few.  We may also be holding on to an archaic belief that only a small percentage of students are capable of learning an instrument, or are “naturally talented” in the arts.  But what is the truth of the matter? […]


A Few Truths Parents Must Understand When Their Child Begins Playing a Musical Instrument

It’s the beginning of another school year, and hundreds of thousands of school children around the country have chosen which instrument they want to play and have taken it home for the first time.  It’s exciting, to say the least, and possibly the beginning of a life-long journey towards a love of music, learning new things, and molding a growth mindset. That said, learning an instrument requires skills and traits […]


How Students Learn Self-Efficacy Through Instrumental Music Instruction

As a parent, one of the best things that I can hope for is that my children have the wherewithal to make their way through life armed with a wide variety of skills and a “can-do” mindset.  As a teacher, school leader, and professor, I have seen way too many young adults who are incapable of navigating their way through “real world” problems, and need someone’s help (usually mine or their parents’) — […]