summer reading

Making It Work: Summer Reading 2018

Summer Reading List: Professional Development, Third Edition

Summer is finally here! After I take a little time to relax and recharge, the planning and organizing for next year will begin. As usual, I have chosen three professional books to read over the summer to enrich, inspire and improve my teaching for next year. Here is what is on my list for 2018. 

Teaching with Vitality by Peggy D. Bennett and Vicky Suarez 

I love teaching music to children more than any other job I could have. No matter how badly I feel when I roll into work the children inspire and make me happy every day. That does not mean that I always feel positive about being a teacher, my teaching, work-life balance and the stresses that come along with the joy. This title has been on my “want to read” list since we posted the book review last year. I am claiming this summer for self-care and looking forward to learning and practicing ways to be the best teacher I can be AND my best self, using the strategies in this text. 

Play, Sing and Dance: An Introduction to Orff Schulwerk by Doug Goodkin 

While I am quite familiar with Orff philosophy I continue to learn the more I read from a variety of sources. This book is a solid introduction to the Orff teaching philosophy. It includes historical background, information about why teaching elements are included in the work, explanations of terminology used by Orff practitioners and an overview of how to use the Music for Children Volumes. If you are new to Orff or curious as to what it is all about this book is a great place to start. If you are not new to Orff and haven’t yet read this text it is a good “review” and may offer new perspectives to inform your teaching and understanding of the work. 

Compassionate Music Teaching A Framework for Motivation and Engagement in the 21st Century by Karin S. Hendricks 

The professional development focus in my school district is inquiry-based learning, equity and student engagement. This title aligns with our district-wide learning focus. I plan to use what I learn in my reading as the basis for one of my professional learning goals next year. The book begins by defining compassion as it relates to teaching music, then shares models of music educators who have successfully implemented compassionate teaching. The following chapters highlight trust, empathy, patience, inclusion, community and authentic connection. I am truly excited to read this book and would love to discuss what I am reading with other music educators to deepen my understanding.   

What does your summer professional reading list include?  Please share titles you plan to read or re-read in the comments below. It may be just the inspiration someone else is looking for to make his or her summer reading list work. 

For even more ideas, check out our lists from summers past!

LeslieAnne Bird

LeslieAnne Bird is a music and movement educator at University Schools in Shaker, Ohio. She teaches general music and choir to fifth through seventh grade young men and is an adjunct Professor at the University of Akron. She has previously taught in North Olmsted & Cleveland Ohio as well as in Prince George’s County, Maryland. LeslieAnne is a national presenter. She has served as vice president and membership chair for the Greater Cleveland Orff Chapter and is currently serving as the content curator for the Teaching With Orff community. In addition, she is the owner and CEO of Three Little Birds Music Education Services LLC where she offers teacher training, coaching and musical experiences for children and adults. She earned Orff Certification from Baldwin Wallace University in 2014, and has completed Music Learning Theory General Music Level One, Level One World Music Drumming training, Level One Google Certification and has earned the Ohio Master Teacher designation.

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  1. Aimee on June 8, 2018 at 8:20 am

    World Music Pedagogy, volumes 1 and 2, For White Folks Who Teach in the Hood, Engaging Musical Practices.

  2. Kathryn on June 8, 2018 at 9:40 am

    The Ways Children Learn Music: An Introduction and Practical Guide to Music Learning Theory by Eric Bluestine – to brush up on MLT – and I want to get familiar with the concepts and sequencing in Together in Harmony: Combining Orff Schulwerk and Music Learning Theory by Diane Lange

  3. Russell on June 11, 2018 at 2:58 pm

    Does anyone know anything about this book?
    Remixing the Classroom: Toward an Open Philosophy of Music Education (Counterpoints: Music and Education)
    Paperback – June 27, 2016
    by Randall Everett Allsup

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