CARROLL RINEHART, AN EARLY PIONEER in the movement to integrate creativity into music education, wrote in 2002, “It is no exaggeration to say that the teaching of composition within the context of general music is undergoing a dramatic transformation. Attention has been focused on composition as a result of its explicit inclusion among the National Standards for Music Education.”1 Indeed, music educators now more than ever are finding fun and effective ways to engage their students in composing, arranging, improvising, and other creative activities using increasingly ubiquitous and user-friendly technology tools. Teachers who have caught this technology-fueled “bug” and feel the need to ramp up the type and number of creative activities in the courses they teach have many choices for proceeding, but two main paths emerge: (1) using prepared curricular materials and (2) creating self-made or “custom” curricular materials.
In this chapter I share some examples, listed according to various categories, of prepared curricular resources. We will also look at the idea of creating your own lesson plans, offering some suggestions and a template for doing so. The next five chapters contain almost 30 lesson plans, each incorporating technology to draw out and develop musical creativity, that serve as examples. This chapter closes with some thoughts on an important curricular topic, assessing the creative work of students in music courses.
Prepared curricular materials include traditionally published books and workbooks (sometimes supplemented by CD-ROM and/or Internet resources) as well as Internet websites containing lesson plans, project ideas, and other related material.
1. Carroll Rinehart, ed., Composing and Arranging: Standard 4 Benchmarks (Reston, VA: MENC, 2002), 2.