Entry #1

The candidate understands how learners grow and develop, recognizing that patterns of learning and development vary individually within and across the cognitive linguistic, social, emotional, and physical areas, and designs and implements developmentally appropriate, relevant, and rigorous learning experiences.

As someone who has already begun to dip their feet in the experiences of teaching and working with students outside of class, I can easily say that there is no one way to teach a concept that will suit every student. I taught ear training during my Master’s degree, which is typically not a class students enjoy, but it is one that every music student has to take. To make class more enjoyable and understandable for my students I tried to present concepts in a variety of ways to increase comprehension and interest. For example, I used different sized oreos to represent intervals that we could stack to practice building triads and seventh chords.This added a kinesthetic option as well as a visual option because students could easily see the differences in the amount of cream in each type of oreo. I coupled this with more traditional styles of pedagogy for those who are more intellectual and like to know the science and theory behind why music sounds the way it does. In some classes, I didn’t have the time or opportunity to present in a lot of ways, so I left open the option for students to come work with me one on one; this is where I noticed the most light bulbs go off. In these situations I was able to cater my explanations to the specific needs of the student and get to know better how they learn. That information also helped develop my lessons plans. 

Students will benefit from my understanding of how to guide their individual growth and development through a variety of assessments and opportunities for feedback. In my classroom, students will have several opportunities to demonstrate their skill and acquired knowledge through formal assessments such as quizzes and performances, but also informal assessments via journaling. The journaling process will most importantly provide me with a better understanding of students current feelings about their own development so that I can better understand how to create my lesson plans for them, much like my one on one lessons with my ear training students. 

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