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The Music Ed Podcast

Quick and easy tips for band teachers.

Weekly hand curated podcast episodes for learning

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Episode 140 - 5 Tips for Developing Great Student Relationships

Dare I say that a positive student teacher relationship is even MORE important than teaching music skills? You may not agree totally with that statement, but you have to agree it is an important piece in the puzzle. In this episode I share 5 strategies that have worked for me, several for over 20 years. As a music teacher, you have a great opportunity to influence a student's life (for the good or bad). Choose good. I would love it if you would consider supporting this work of love at www.patreon.com/themusicedpodcast. Your support would help take this podcast to the next level. I highly recommend Harry Wong's The First Days of School.


16 Oct 2019

Rank #1

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Episode 125 - 7 Tips For Making Band Fun

We know that band is fun, but our students don't always know that. We know that fun is achieved by aiming for and reaching excellence, but our students don't always know that. How can we make band fun while still focusing on excellence? Listen to these 7 tips for help.


13 Feb 2019

Rank #2

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Episode 137 - How To Structure Rehearsal Time

My rehearsal time looks completely different starting my 22nd year than it did when I first started out. I find myself devoting more and more time to fundamentals. Join me as I share tips for how I structure my rehearsal time, and join me as a supporter on Patreon. You'll get some cool free things as a thank you.


11 Sep 2019

Rank #3

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Episode 124 - Should Practice Outside of School be Required

We all wish that each and every one of our students practiced two hours a day every day, but is this possible or even realistic? It depends. In my 21 years of teaching I've tried it all. Surprisingly I have found success by trying something different. Perhaps it will work for you.


6 Feb 2019

Rank #4

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Episode 132 - The Funniest Statement You've Made to your Ensemble

Director language is so full of fun similes and colorful language. The most fun ones are those that spill out in the spur of the moment. These are my favorite top ten uttered by me and others.


1 May 2019

Rank #5

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Episode 136 - 10 Ideas for Creating Traditions

Traditions are such an important part of every band program, and traditions need to be unique to you and your school. When I started at one of my schools, they only had one tradition, and it was terrible! It was hard for me to continue it, but I needed to just for one year. Would you consider supporting us on Patreon? Your support will help bring this free podcast to the next level and enable me to continue to make it available. Canon City Music and Blossom Festival


4 Sep 2019

Rank #6

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Episode 123 - Six Responses When Students Say "I Want To Switch To Drums"

I've been teaching for 21 years, but I still HATE it when a student asks me if he can switch to drums. Why doesn't anyone want to switch to tuba? Can we control the number of drummers in our bands (yes, we can)? Can we shape the culture of our band to minimize this (yes, we can)? Will some students quit over this (yes, some will, but not as many as you think)? Six tips to minimize students wanting to switch. Percussive Arts Society page for rudiment download, www.pas.org


30 Jan 2019

Rank #7

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Episode 141 - What To Say at the Concert

Do you struggle with what to say - or not say - at the concert. There's a fine line between being informative and helpful, and just rambling. Here are some tips to help. Support us at www.patreon.com/themusicedpodcast www.jamesdivine.net


23 Oct 2019

Rank #8

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Episode 139 - Help Beginner Trumpets Change Partials

When beginner trumpets have a hard time changing partials, it's almost always about the air. We as music educators know what we want the students to do, but they often don't understand what we are asking. In this episode I share more than six tips to help your trumpet players change partials. It's also effective with other brass players. Has this podcast been a help? It's a labor of love for me. I've been doing it for seven years for free. There are some costs involved. Would you consider supporting the podcast for as little as $5/month? Go to www.patreon.com/themusicedpodcast.


9 Oct 2019

Rank #9

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Episode 127 - 11 Movies Every Band Kid Should See

Disclaimer: View movies yourself before showing them to your students. Check your school or district's policy on showing movies. In my opinion, movies are best reserved for bus trips or special viewing events rather than replacing a rehearsal, Also, I think they work best when combined with discussion and reflection. I have included some of those ideas in the podcast.


20 Mar 2019

Rank #10

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Episode 138 - Getting Middle School Students to Quiet Down and Focus

This was my first year back teaching beginning band after a 14 year hiatus while I taught at a suburban high school. My first experience 14 years ago was at a prestigious private school where the students and parents all seemed to care and were on their best behavior. Now I'm at an urban school. My how things are different! It took persistence and consistency over a six week period, but the students are finally where I want them to be (well, 42 of the 43 are). You're often going to have an outlier on whom nothing seems to work. He spends most of his time in the hallway. We have a conference scheduled with his guardians. Not saying it as an excuse, but he has had a difficult life thus far. In this episode I share some strategies that have worked for me. Try them. They may work for you. Just remember, each situation is different. I saw a post on a media site about this same problem. Some teachers answered "All I have to do is threaten to call home." That was my same strategy when I was at the private school. It helps if you have a very supportive admin, which I do. If this podcast has been a blessing to you, would you consider supporting us at www.patreon.com/themusicedpodcast?


2 Oct 2019

Rank #11

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Episode 143 - 16 Things I Wish I Knew About Festival as a Young Director

Oh the mistakes - so many - I made as a young director going to festival. I share 16 things I learned the way, tips that can help you do better. Support the podcast at patreon. www.jamesdivine.net


6 Nov 2019

Rank #12