So it has been a weird week, I just got back from Texas and this coming week is winter break. I have been really sitting in limbo. It is truly difficult to teach anything new the week before break but since I just returned from another amazing TMEA conference I’ve been experimenting with a few tech tools and different ways to use them in class. One being the Joytunes family of products.
Have you ever heard of Joytunes? They have a fantastic set of practice products for students learning recorder and piano.
I’ve found myself using these apps with my recorder students and my after school piano students all the time seeing great results in the process especially with their piano apps. The thing that makes Joytunes apps stand out to me is the way it recognizes real instruments allowing the user to control the game using a real recorder or a real piano. One of the arguments music teachers make when debating about technology in the classroom is that it takes away students experience with a physical instrument. What these teachers do not know is that with the advances in technology, that argument is no longer valid and using an app like the ones Joytunes provides with a built in microphone we can turn a piece of technology into a valuable practice tool.
With all of these tools, I have found ways to use them inside the classroom and outside.
- Playing Recorder Master as a class.
- Having students play Recorder Master as an assessment logging their scores.
- Practicing Recorder Master at home
- Using Dust Buster or Piano Mania as a warmup or incentive tool for private lessons.
- Having those students whom I can’t fit into my private piano schedule learn beginner piano at home using one of the piano apps.
- Learning about different national anthems using the Piano Summer Games app
- Printing out some of the free sheet music for my piano students or students who want piano music.
The possibilities become endless.
Have I peaked your interest yet? Are you trying to tell me you do not have an iPad? or maybe you can’t afford such a mystical tool. Head to joytunes.com where you can play the recorder games for free right on the website all you need to do is make sure you have a microphone somewhere on your computer. The website also offers free piano sheet music for beginner piano students!
To download the Free apps click on one of the following links below:
Piano Mania: https://itunes.apple.com/US/app/id604699751?mt=8
Piano Summer Games: https://itunes.apple.com/app/id540759434
Recorder Master: https://itunes.apple.com/app/recorder-master/id492065346
How do you get your students interested in practicing?