I’m not very familiar with Interactive Whiteboards, will I be able to use this?
Yes. If you can double click a file to start it on a computer, you’ll be able to start up this program. If you’ve used your computer with an interactive whiteboard before you’ll already have the software installed from your whiteboard. If you don’t, then we can guide you on how to download and install the software you need.
What software do I need?
This is designed to work with the two main software platforms used by interactive whiteboard. SMART notebook, for SMART boards, and ActiveInspire, for Promethean interactive whiteboards. If you have a different whiteboard, then you can still choose either SMART notebook express or ActiveInspire personal, and download them for free. We will guide you on how to download and install the software you need.
Do I need lots of skills in music to teach with this?
No – we’ve designed this so it can be used by anyone to give a general introduction to music in the early grades. It can be used by general classroom teachers who need to cover a little music with their students.
How much content is there in this program?
There are fourteen structured lessons, with 10 or more activities per lesson. In total there is 176 whiteboard slides, and 60 pages of detailed lesson plans.
Depending on how quickly you went through it, this course is designed to last between 10-15 weeks. You could make it last for 20 weeks if required.
Where did you get the songs from, and are they any good?
The songs were the result of a songwriting competition, where we chose from over 200 entries from music teachers all over the world. They are a selection of songs which work in the classroom.
Can I customize this to my exact needs for my classes?
Because this is provided in the software that you already use on the whiteboard – YES!
You can edit the lesson documents, just as you would documents that you created yourself. Therefore if activities don’t suit your students, you can remove them. If you’d like to expand on the resources and add more you can do that as well.
Can I use this even if I don’t have an interactive whiteboard?
Yes – you can use this by having the children come up to your computer or laptop to interact with the software, and using a video projector to show what they are doing to the rest of the class.
Other than a whiteboard or a projection screen, what other special equipment do these lessons require?
The whiteboard lessons need a computer to run them, which is hooked up to the projector or whiteboard. This can be either PC or Mac, as you just download the appropriate software for either of the platforms.
There are a few activities in the program that make use of whatever musical equipment you may have in your classroom. For example there are percussion playing activities where the children play in time using tambourines, claves, triangles, woodblocks and shakers etc.
Towards the end of the program there is also a couple of activities that utilise tuned percussion instruments, so whatever you have whether it be Xylophones, Glockenspiels, Chime bars or even boomwhaker tubes can be used.
If you have none of these things that is fine – as the program works equally well omitting those activities, and your students can do body percussion instead.