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La Scena Musicale - Vol. 6, No. 1

Education Magazines

Par/by Lucie Renaud / September 1, 2000

Version française...

Since fall is almost upon us, with students returning to class, this month's La Scena will survey some magazines dedicated to music teachers. Most are from the United States, one's from England and this first one is Canadian:

* Canadian Music Educator. About 60 pages; published 4 times a year for the past 41 years. Subscriptions: Department of Elementary Education, Faculty of Education, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, T6G 2G5. Tel. (780) 492-4273 ext. 241.

While this magazine is the Canadian Music Educators' official journal, it includes articles from around Canada on various aspects of teaching: the use of technology in a classroom environment, news from the choral music world, personal recollections of elementary school teachers, etc. Presentation is not the most glamorous, but contents are interesting and thorough.

* Music Educators Journal. About 72 pages. Published 6 times a year. In its 86th year. US $10 for 6 issues for MENC members; back issues: US $7. Write: 1806 Robert Fulton Drive, Reston, VA, 20191-4348.

Published by the National Association for Music Education. This non-profit organization's mission is the advancement of music education. The magazine focuses on ways to improve classroom teaching. The May issue, for example, had articles on teaching improvisation; starting a high school chamber music group; bringing music history to life; and how to use computers. The Grand Masters Series profiles exceptional teachers, emphasizing their achievements. Articles provide many suggestions on resources, repertoire, and readings. Each issue also includes book and video reviews. Very informative and beautifully presented.

* Teaching Music. In its 7th year; about 70 pages. Published 6 times a year. Same address as above. Website: .

This magazine, kid sibling to the publication above, has a more sober look, despite a less lavish presentation, focuses on news, practical articles in specific areas, including technology guide and "how to" articles.

* Music teacher. In its 79th year; about 70 pages. UK 4.50 per issue. Rhinegold Publishing. Subscriptions: PO Box 47, Gravesend, Kent, DA12 2AN. Telephone: 01474334500.

This English magazine is indeed British in tone and contents. Articles fall under the following sections: News; Choral Music; Primary Teaching; Classroom, with detailed musical examples and an impressive list of resources (in England); Analysis and Reviews of choral works, books, singing and piano scores. The material is always discussed in a comprehensive manner but the resources mentioned are hardly accessible on this side of the Atlantic.

* American String Teachers. Annual Subscription included with membership fees of US$54. Published by the American String Teachers Association with the National School Orchestra Association. 1806 Robert Fulton Drive, suite 300, Reston, VA 20191-4348. Available to members.

A very complete magazine informs string teachers about new products and recent news. Regular features include: Masterclass (the May issue, for example, dealt with musicianship in ensembles), pre-professional perspectives (for advanced students), teaching tips (including "Member2member," a section of tips from readers). The May issue had a timely and very complete preview of summer conferences, permitting one to book holidays that mix learning and fun. Very colourful presentation. Annual indexes are offered, facilitating searches through back issues.

* The Instrumentalist. In its 54th year; about 112 pages. Subscriptions in Canada are US$34 for 12 issues. 200 Northfield Road, Northfield, Illinois, 60093.

Dedicated to all instruments taught in school, especially band instruments, this magazine offers diversified material for teachers. Recent recordings and new books are reviewed monthly, with a very extensive amount of new music repertoire for band, wind ensembles, orchestras and soloists. Teaching tips are included, and works are always presented in detail, including excerpts from scores, usefully guiding teachers on ways to master a musical work. The July issue included summer readings for directors and a complete 2000-2001 directory of clinicians, associations and competitions, as well as a calendar of events (all geared to the US, however).

* Jazz Educators Journal. In its 32nd year; about 100 pages. Published 6 times a year, subscriptions are included with membership (US$55, US$22 students) to the International Association of Jazz Educators. IAJE, Box 724, Manhattan, Kansas 66505.

Each issue features a comprehensive profile of a famed jazz musician. Articles focus on teaching jazz in a school environment. The May issue explored jazz improvisation teaching, including repertoire high school students should listen to in order to understand jazz idioms better. It also included a list of summer 2000 jazz festivals. Thorough reviews of new music, CD-Roms, teaching materials and books are standard. Of special interest to more advanced students: a mini-clinic that answers queries about the industry.

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