I’m so excited to be getting the opportunity to explore Orff with Vashti Summervill. Orff-Schulwerk is a philosophy of music teaching that is often used in school music classrooms – but it can be put to great use in the private studio as well. I think the quote Vashti uses at the beginning sums it up pretty well:
“Show me – I forget,
Teach me – I learn,
Involve me – I understand.”
Vashti’s students are definitely involved in every part of their music education. In her teaching, Vashti uses so many creative and collaborative activities to teach all sorts of concepts. As she says on her website, reading is only one tool in the musical toolbox and there are so many more to explore!
If possible, you’re definitely going to want to watch the video on this one – not just listen. Vashti has invited in some students to demonstrate the activities. Plus you’re going to want to see her equipment, I’m green with envy!
There are a lot of podcasts you could be tuning into today, and I’m grateful that you’ve chosen mine.
Being a full-time teacher myself, I know how busy teachers are and how much time, effort and passion we put into our students. Sometimes, the last thing we want to do in our time off is listen to more piano teaching stuff! So, well done for using this time for self-improvement.
Whether you’re at the gym, on the bike or in the car, I know that you and your students will get lots out of what you learn in the long run. Just make sure you try out some of the ideas before they get lost in the business of your next lessons.
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Do you normally introduce rhythm concepts away from the piano?
Which activity that Vashti demonstrated are you most looking forward to trying out?
What did you know about Orff before listening to this podcast? Did anything surprise you?
Tim Topham is the founder and director of TopMusic. Tim hosts the popular TopCast show, blogs regularly at topmusic.co and speaks at local and international conferences on topics such as pedagogy, business, marketing and entrepreneurship. Tim has been featured in American Music Teacher, The Piano Teacher Magazine, California Music Teacher and EPTA Piano Professional. Tim holds an MBA in Educational Leadership, BMus, DipEd and AMusA.