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ASTA Presentation – Bach to the Folk Roots: Jamming in the Schools

March 21 @ 1:00 pm - 1:45 pm MDT

Do you want include local fiddle styles and improvisation in your teaching, but don’t know where to start?

Eclectic jam sessions are an inviting space to learn and already exist in your community. If you’re nervous about jumping in, join us to learn how to participate in community folk groups. We’ll cover proper jam session etiquette, playing in different fiddle traditions, and most importantly- connecting these communities and styles to your students.

Many orchestra teachers have been exclusively trained in Euro-centric classical techniques, inadvertently overlooking the exciting and diverse array of teaching methods available to enrich their orchestra classrooms. While classical music undoubtedly holds a significant place in these classes, it alone fails to nurture the individual creativity that students crave. Introducing jam sessions with folk tunes and improvisation not only invigorates the classroom but also offers an exceptional avenue to infuse creativity into your classroom! We understand that the prospect of organizing a jam session might appear daunting to classically trained teachers, but fear not, as we are here to demystify the world of jamming.

Immerse yourself in this captivating and interactive session where we demonstrate how the infusion of folk jamming can seamlessly elevate your daily curriculum. This dynamic approach not only reinforces the classical skills and musicianship that already serve as the cornerstone of your teaching but also bring an added element of fun and excitement. We will explore the art of jam etiquette, bringing harmony to your classroom, while unraveling the Nashville number system—a versatile tool for reading chord charts and creating captivating musical accompaniments. Accomplished professionals from across North and South America will share their invaluable experiences in teaching these dynamic styles. Additionally, we will introduce a collection of easy songs, allowing you to kick-start your journey right away. To further support your transition from classroom to stage, we provide comprehensive materials, including sheet music in treble, alto, and bass clef formats. We will also assist you in demystifying the basics of improvisation, demonstrating how even first-year students can experience excitement while learning about scales by bringing them to life over chord changes.

This is an interactive session, If possible bring your instrument, and find ways to make your teaching more creative. It is time to jam!

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March 21
1:00 pm - 1:45 pm MDT
Event Category:


American String Teachers Association (ASTA)
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