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Jerry Bradley

The question as it concerns elementary music is test what?
If the educators responsible for determining what to test are the same seemingly uninformed group of music supervisors, band directors, and secondary music teachers that are leading the testing train in Texas, then the emphasis will be on testing music page reading skills and not the areas that are most essential for the elementary age child. Music literacy is not the focus and ultimate
goal of elemtary music teaching according to Orff, Gordon, Brigitte Warner, pioneers of modern elemtary music pedagogy. Unless elementary music teachers begin speaking out and remind these folks that our major goal is having students experience and create their own music, the future music class will be just like many of our "basic" classrooms...a bland, joyless assembly line engaged in regurgitating facts onto a bubble sheet. Where will be the questions and testing of what I really teach, independent and group intune singing, playing ostinati, moving appropriately to music, creating their own choreography, melodies, improvising, and simply discovering how music brings joy? No, none of that will be tested because too many secondary folks on those committees are not creative enough to devise a way for those skills to be tested, and unfortunately, many of those folks believe the highest goal for elementary music is to produce band, orchestra and choir students to fill out their programs.

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