Making Music and Enriching Lives: A Guide for All Music Teachers / Edition 1

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Making Music and Enriching Lives fills an important niche in the very large world of books about music. It's unlike any other instructional book in the way it addresses comprehensive, across-the-board issues that affect all teachers, students, and musicians. In this book, you will find specifics not only about how to teach music, but also about how to motivate and inspire students of any age.

In this first volume of her Music for Life series, Bonnie Blanchard (with Cynthia Blanchard Acree) shares successful approaches with both students and teachers that have worked wonders in her own studio to produce successful students who are energized about their lessons and their music. These books touch on all aspects of music instruction from running a studio to student motivation and teaching technique to performing, while addressing not just the musician, but the whole person along the way.

Indiana University Press

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"A unique book that goes beyond instrumental instruction to show step by step what makes a good teacher with skilled, committed students. Beginning and experienced teachers will find new tricks and inspiration here, to rekindle their love of teaching and music. Bonnie's tips and stories will show how to run a studio, motivate students, deal with stage fright, teach artistry, and involve the whole family in music. This book is serious about music, but it's also fun—something that should always be part of good music instruction." —Sir James Galway

Indiana University Press

Strad Magazine
Blanchard has filled the book with lots of good advice...suggestions on how to jump-start practice procrastinators is especially useful. ... [M]any helpful hints for teaching
musicality... I was intrigued.
American Music Teachers Magazine
"Bonnie Blanchard is a very enthusiastic teacher. Her enthusiasm is infectious and attracts a studio full of excited students who love to practice and experience their lesson as the highlight of their week. Private music teachers who want a successful studio like this will find many ideas here. Also, this book will be inspirational for teachers who may be experiencing a little burnout." "The first chapter provides a valuable overview, while the second chapter is inspirational in its description of the idea teacher-student relationship. I found great value throughout . . . loaded with practical ideas about teaching music, with many tips for memorizing, sight reading, and other essential skills. " "Part 3, "Tackling Your Toughest Teaching Challenges" takes on beginning students, important differences between boys and girls, adult students, stage fright, and dealing with complaints. Part 4, "Running Your Private Music Studio", has practical ideas for the business side of things, as well as a great chapter about what it means to be a music teacher." " . . . Highly entertaining to read . . . contains a lot of information . . . I have seen instant improvement in my relationships with some of my students as a result. Blanchard is a noted flute teacher, however the systematic study of this book over time could greatly benefit teachers of all instruments.
—Lee Galloway
The Instrumentalist Magazine
Anyone who teaches . . . will appreciate and benefit from this tome . . . filled with practical advice . . . outstanding, with excellent ideas . . .
The Flute Magazine
. . . A comprehensive, detailed, enthusiastic guide . . . full of excellent ideas ... much helpful advice. . . .
—Alison Uren
Miyazawa Newsletter
Provides concrete solutions to difficult situations . . . helps teachers solve challenges, have lots more fun, and get even more fulfillment from their teaching.
Flute List and Galway newsletter
. . . Sets out to help beginning teachers . . . and rejuvenate the teaching of those, like myself, who have been teaching for years . . .
—Susan Maclagan
Kansas City Flute Association
Fabulous . . . refreshing and affirming . . . A product of the renowned Indiana University Press, this book is widely available and a wise purchase.
—Dr. Rebecca Dunnell
American Music Teacher

"This valuable resource can provide practical suggestions for establishing a studio atmosphere. The writing is intuitive and reveals the experiences and insights of a seasoned and experienced teacher." —American Music Teacher

Strings Magazine

"Blanchard's dedication is apparent, and she holds the reader to no lesser standard. With some effort, any chapter of this book could drastically improve an aspect of your teaching." —Strings Magazine

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780253219176
  • Publisher: Indiana University Press
  • Publication date: 6/28/2007
  • Series: Music for Life Ser.
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 336
  • Sales rank: 1,199,954
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 10.00 (h) x 0.76 (d)

Meet the Author

Bonnie Blanchard holds music and teaching degrees from the University of Washington. She has long been respected in the Pacific Northwest as a versatile freelance musician, yet she is best known as a dynamic instructor with unique teaching techniques that create skilled musicians with a lifelong love of music. She lives in Seattle, Washington.

Cynthia Blanchard Acree is co-author (with Cliff Acree) of The Gulf Between Us: Love and Terror in Desert Storm. The dual memoir was featured as a "Today's Best Nonfiction" excerpt in Reader's Digest. She lives in San Diego, California.

Indiana University Press

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Table of Contents


Part 1. Enriching Lives
1. Transform Your Teaching Style: The Music for Life Method
2. Focus on Relationships First
3. Instill Pride and Respect
4. Show Students Your Commitment to Excellence
5. Promote a Love of Learning and Independence
6. Create an Atmosphere of Achievement
7. Attitude Is Everything
8. Make Practice a Priority
9. Increase Success with the Music for Life Notebook System
10. Energize Students with Goals
11. Recognize and Reward Results and Effort
12. Foster Happy, Confident Students
13. Host Fun Musical Events

Part 2. Making Music
14. Use Practice Tricks for Fast Results
15. Musicality Makes the Difference
16. Multiply the Fun in Chamber Music
17. Take the Fear Out of Memorization
18. Help Students Become Confident Sight Readers

Part 3. Tackling Your Toughest Teaching Challenges
19. In the Beginning
20. Make Learning Fun (and Less Painful) for Adults
21. Troubleshoot Problems and Turn around Complaints
22. Prepare Students for Performance
23. Conquer Stage Fright
24. Ace the Audition
25. When It's Time to Say Goodbye
26. Ask the Teacher

Part 4. Running Your Private Music Studio
27. Establish Your Private Studio and Develop a Business Plan
28. Get Paid What You're Worth
29. A Life in the Arts: Is It for You?
30. Make the Teacher's Life Easier

For Further Reading

Indiana University Press

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 3, 2007

    The best music teaching book on the market - practical, enjoyable and inspiring!

    Bonnie Blanchard¿s book ¿Making Music, Enriching Lives¿ is a joyful, fun and inspiring read, imbued with the author¿s enthusiasm and humor. The book is pleasantly personal, filled with many stories and examples, which go straight to the heart of teaching. The numerous suggestions offered are practical, rather than mechanical. For example, the book does not cover the physics of tone 'the air hits here at this angle, etc', rather it offers ways to help students find and instill in themselves the motivation and desire to practice tone. I read the book, cover to cover, over a long weekend 'away from my teaching studio' and was reenergized upon my return ¿ this book is its own ¿mini-teaching spa/retreat¿! The book is unique, specifically because of its focus on the ¿human¿ side of teaching ¿ drawing attention to students¿ varied abilities, personalities and learning styles. Ms. Blanchard presents many suggestions to help build and nurture the student/teacher relationship, as well as the teacher/parent relationship ¿ both primary factors for student success. In addition, it not only encourages us to challenge and raise the bar for our students¿ playing skills, but to do the same for our own teaching skills. Ms. Blanchard reiterates the importance of teaching the ¿whole¿ musician, rather than ¿a piece of music¿. She offers helpful suggestions for incorporating fundamentals and musicality within each lesson and provides many pointers to help students build their problem-solving and independent learning skills. The author includes a valuable list of suggestions to help students become creative and critical thinkers. The sections discussing the varied learning styles of boys vs. girls, as well as the section specifically addressing the characteristics of adult learners are extremely informative and helpful. The author places important emphasis upon the learning process and the skills acquired and enhanced throughout, rather than placing the most important emphasis on what the author defines as ¿outcome goals¿ 'winning the audition, something in control of the judges, not the student'. Also unique is the Ms. Blanchard¿s ¿Music for Life Notebook System¿, which ultimately provides students with a personalized reference of all they have learned. Overall, the book was a refreshing look at many aspects of teaching, offering a myriad of ways to lead each student to their fullest musical potential, through a balance of hard work and fun! One of the most memorable lines in the book is Ms. Blanchard¿s statement that, ¿Many musicians decide to become music teachers because the love music. A better reason would be because they love helping people¿. I believe this not only best sums up what teaching should be, but also the overall nature of the book ¿ ¿Making Music and Enriching Lives¿ helps teachers, help their students develop skills to experience joy, confidence and success, in music and many other areas of their lives. ¿Making Music and Enriching Lives¿ offers invaluable suggestions for new teachers, experienced teachers, burnt-out teachers, teachers relocating and teachers of varied instruments. The title is well suited to the book, as it will ¿enrich¿ the teaching of those who read it and in turn enrich the lesson experience of their students. I highly recommend this book to all teachers ¿ keep it in your library, as you will undoubtedly refer to it often. If possible, for the first read, find a quiet spot, curl up with a good cup of tea and be inspired!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 11, 2007

    A reviewer

    Finally a book that deals with ALL aspects of teaching music! It is not limited to specific instruments. In fact, it could even be used to inspire teachers of subjects other than music! I'm a voice teacher with many years of experience, and still was deighted to learn new ideas, helping me to keep teaching interesting (and fun) for me as well as for my students. Margaret Russell, Essen Germany

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