Music for Elementary Teachers

Music 3824 Syllabus

Professor: Thomas Priest, Ed.D

Classroom: BC 125, M-TH Office: BC 351
4 Credit Hours Office Hours: T & TH at 12:00 or by appointment
Telephone: (801) 626-7181 Email:


Music 3824 provides the elementary education teacher with an introduction into the role of music learning in education. While continuing to develop your own musical knowledge, you will become familiar with materials, strategies, and activities which can be used with children from pre-K through grade 6. As a personal goal, you should find your own path for continuing to grow as an artistic educator.

Classroom teachers significantly influence individuals' musical development. Since music is a part of our daily lives, a part of our heritage, a unique form of self-expression, and a unique way of understanding our world, it is essential that the classroom techer can build connections between knowing music and knowing in other ways.

Bridges to Build 

Course Objectives

By the end of the course you should be able to:
  1. provide a thoughtful and informed philosophy on music learning in general education.
  2. develop your understanding of music through description, interpretation, performance, and composition or improvisation.
  3. develop your repertoire of music for sharing with children
  4. apply the Facets Model for examining art works and discovering connections.
  5. analyze and evaluate musical materials for use in the elementary school.
  6. develop music learning activities for children that help build connections between knowing music and knowing in other ways.
  7. explore musical timbres by building a musical instrument

Required Text

Music for Elementary Classroom Teachers. A collection of materials compiled and edited by Thomas Priest, Ed. D. Available in the bookstore.

Required Materials

  1. An organized portfolio where you keep all class notes, handouts, and assignments. It will help you and the class to keep your materials organized
  2. Recordings as needed
  3. Art supplies as needed
  4. Blank VHS videotape(s) or DVD-Rs
  5. Blank audiotapes or CDRs as needed (10 and 20 minute cassette tapes may be purchased from the instructor).

Optional Texts

  1. Claudia Cornett (1999).The Arts as Meaning Makers: Integrating Literature and the Arts Throughout the Curriculum. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice-Hall.
  2. Janet Barrett, Claire McCoy, and Kari Veblen. (1997). Sound Ways of Knowing: Music in the Interdisciplinary Curriculum.

Course Assignments

The assignments are designed to help you meet the course objectives (See above). In order to succeed in the class, it is in your best interest to plan ahead and work on the more difficult assignments*** throughout the semester. You may turn in assignments early.

(1) "Getting to Know You" (Objective 1). 
(2) Examining Personal Musical Experience (Objective 3).
(3) "Does Music Make You Smarter?" (Objective 1)

Begin working on Music Repertoire Project and Music Instrument Project

(4) "A Virtual Panel of Expert Researchers" (Objectives 1, 2, 5, & 6).
(5) "Finding Flow" (Objectives 1, 2, 5, and 6).
(6) "Tarnished Trophies" and "Teacher Satisfaction" (Objectives 1, 2, & 6) 
(7) *** Musical Instrument (Objective 7)
(8) ***Music Repertoire Project(Objectives 2, 3, 4, 5, & 6)
(9) ***Exam I (Objectives 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, & 6) This first exam will take place 
in the testing center outside of class time.

Begin Working on Facets Model, Music Learning Activities Plan, and Teaching Episode.

(10) "Using Learning Modalities to Celebrate Intelligence" & "Touch the Music" (Objectives 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, & 6) 
 (11) "Creativity in Music and Early Childhood" (Objectives 1, 2, 3, 5, & 6) 
(12) ***Exam II (Objectives 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, & 6)
(13) ***Facets Model (Objectives 2, 4, 5, & 6)
(14) ***Music Learning Activities Plan (Objectives 2, 5 & 6)
(15) ***Teaching Episode (Objectives 2 & 6)
(16) ***Music Learning Software Evaluation (Objective 5)
(17) ***Final Exam (Objectives 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, & 6)


Getting to Know You (10)
Examining Personal Musical Experience (10)
10 + 10 = 20
Musical Instrument Project
Music Repertoire Project
= 200
Facets Model
Music Learning Activities Plan and Supporting Materials
Teaching Episode
Music Learning Software Evaluation

Since several assignments are designed to help you succeed in completing the other more difficult assignments, all assignments must be completed (regardless of total points) to receive a C or higher in the course. 10% will be subtracted for each day an assignment is late. You may figure out your final letter grade by dividing the sum of your points by 520.

A, A- = Outstanding completion of all course requirements or 90-100%
B+, B, B- = All course requirements completed with competence and accuracy or 80-89%
C+, C, C- = All course requirements adequately completed or 70-79%
D+, D, D- = Some course requirements not completed or 60-69%
E = Several course requirements not completed or 59% or below

Attendance and Participation

Attendance and Participation
If you miss class, it is entirely your responsibility to attempt to make up the missed work. It is inappropriate to rob class time to make up for your absence. You are expected to attend class and participate. Since knowledge and information will be shared that will not be readily available outside of class, attendance is vital for your success in the course. In-class teaching examples are designed to help you prepare for your Music Learning Activities Plan and Teaching Episode near the end of the course as well as provide informal assessments of your achievement. Students who miss class or are late to class impede their own achievement as well as the achievement of their classmates. For this reason, 10 points will be deducted for each unexcused absence. Arriving late to class on 2 occasions will be considered an unexcused absence. If you are late to class, please enter as quietly as possible as to not hurt our sacred space. It is your responsibility to meet with the instructor after class to make sure the record of attendance is accurate.


The exams should help you learn and apply what you have studied throughout the course. The first two exams will take place in the testing center. Questions on the exams have been developed by hundreds of students who have previously taken this course. If you would like to submit a question for a future class, please do not hesitate to do so.

Library Resources

Music Collections

Textbooks on Reserve

Reference Materials

Other Books/Media on Reserve

  • Banek, Reinhold, Sound Design: A Handbook of Musical Instrument Building.
  • Campbell, McCullough-Brabson, & Tucker, Roots and Branches: A Legacy of Multicultural music for Children. (Includes CD).
  • Classical Music Illustrations, Clip Art
  • DeBeer, Sara (Ed.), Open Ears: Musical Adventures for a New Generation
  • Hunter, Simple Folk Instruments to Make and to Play.
  • Longdon, Sanna H., & Weikart, Phyllis s., Cultures and Styling in Folk Dance, High/Scope, 1998. (Useful information on the cultural context of folk dances from around the world).
  • Old Fashioned Music Illustrations, Clip Art
  • Popular Music Illustrations, Clip Art
  • Waring, Dennis. (1990). Making Wood Folk Instruments, New York: Sterling.
  • Weikart, Phyllis S., (1998), Teaching Movement and Dance: A Sequential Approach to Rhythmic Movement, 4th ed. High/Scope
  • Lesson Planning (videorecording)
  • Disabled Students' Notice

    Any student requiring accommodations or services due to a disability must contact Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD) in room 181 of the Student Service Center. SSD can also arrange to provide course materials (including this syllabus) in alternative formats if necessary.

    1Gardner, H. (1991) The Unschooled Mind: How Children Think & How Schools Should Teach.
    New York: Basic Books

    2Biasini, A., Thomas, R., & Pogonowski, L. (1970). MMCP Interaction. Bardonia, NY: Media Materials.