Ashley Hall's Professional Education Portfolio

K-12 Certified Music Educator

Substandard I


Facilitation of learning and achievement of all students (in accordance with the SBE Universal Education Vision and Principles), including the ability to:

i. Promote literacy in a variety of contexts (e.g., numeric, graphics, textual, multi-media, artistic, and digital); and

This substandard addresses the teacher’s ability to promote literacy in a variety of contexts in a consistent and creative manner. Music does this in and of itself — however, the teacher is still the one responsible for drawing the student’s attention to these details in music and being able to clearly explain and define their importance to the music and the student’s knowledge and understanding of them.

Numeric is covered two ways: In the theory of the music (chord structure) and in the structure of the music (measure numbers).

Graphic is covered many ways: In the actual sheet music, the notation is a graphic symbol which translates to the student a meaning of pitch and duration. Graphic literacy can also make itself present in the interpretation of music — what does this music make you imagine in your mind’s eye? What creations have hailed from music’s inspiration (and vice versa)?

Textual is ever present in music: The way melodic, harmonic, and rhythmic materials combine in a piece of music to create a quality in sound. The range, the density, the harmony of sound are all factors present in music’s textual literacy.

Multi-media can be so useful in the music classroom: Give your students opportunities to hear quality musical recordings, as well as the chance to share their own definitions of “quality music” with their peers (providing the teacher gets to approve the content beforehand). Many other uses for music media exist, but this is one way I’ve used it recently in my classrooms.

Artistic means in music are easy to see but hard to remember to address in different ways: The director’s interpretation of the piece is vital, but the means of reaching it can be addressed only through a variety of literacy means (see above comments).

Digital literacy in music in this day and time means the ability to use compositional programs, such as Finale and Sibelius. If your district has the funds to support one or both of these programs, give your students the opportunity to experience and create their own forms of literacy.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.