If you will be in Europe in the middle of April, you definitely need to visit the Musikmesse in Frankfurt. This is the Europe's biggest trade fair, where you can find everything about music - instrument producers, music publishers, and a lot more.
We have recently attended a workshop, led by Doug Goodkin. He is quite an authority regarding teaching music to elementary school kids, especially intorducing them elements of jazz, using Orff methodology.
Some of the most important takeaways from the workshop are:
- music is the language that spans beyond words; it can be used with babies, which don't speak yet, to the elderly people, which may not speak any more.
- using body percussion is a very efficient approach; interesting things happen when we perform patterns in canon, or have groups perform patterns of different lengths (3, 5, 7 beats).
- the same music activity can be used with kids of different ages and experience, however we ca use a twist to it - those who perform better can get more difficult patterns, or may play something and sing something else simultaneously, etc. This way making music can always be challenging and interesting for the kids.
- kids are capable of recognizing patterns. One of the most common mistakes of the teachers is to correct the kids too soon - just repeat the task a few times and they will pick it up.
A lot of useful teaching and performing material can be found in his books.
Martin. with quite some experience in music and music education for children