The Art of Teaching Music

The Art of Teaching Music

Estelle R. Jorgensen
Distribution: Global
Publication date: 03/19/2008
ISBN: 978-0-253-00020-0
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The Art of Teaching Music takes up important aspects of the art of music teaching ranging from organization to serving as conductor to dealing with the disconnect between the ideal of university teaching and the reality in the classroom. Writing for both established teachers and instructors on the rise, Estelle R. Jorgensen opens a conversation about the life and work of the music teacher. The author regards music teaching as interrelated with the rest of lived life, and her themes encompass pedagogical skills as well as matters of character, disposition, value, personality, and musicality. She reflects on musicianship and practical aspects of teaching while drawing on a broad base of theory, research, and personal experience. Although grounded in the practical realities of music teaching, Jorgensen urges music teachers to think and act artfully, imaginatively, hopefully, and courageously toward creating a better world.

Author Bio

Estelle R. Jorgensen is Professor of Music at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music where she teaches courses in the foundations of music education. She is author of In Search of Music Education and Transforming Music Education (IUP, 2003), editor of The Philosophy of Music Education Review, and a frequent contributor to journals in music and arts education.


“Writing for both established teachers and instructors on the rise, Jorgensen opens a conversation about the life and work of the music teacher. She reflects on the instructor, musicianship, and practical aspects of teaching while drawing on a broad base of theory, research, and personal experience.”

“This book will turn heads and quite likely deepen the thoughts of working musicians who teach. I do not doubt that it will, as Jorgensen declares, open wide the conversation on teaching that is waiting to happen.”
 — Patricia Campbell, University of Washington

“Few books about teaching manage to fill the reader with the sense of things being possible, but Jorgensen eloquently achieves this in prose that is clean, clear, concise and coherent such that it culminates in a manifesto that attempts to 'open wide the conversation on teaching that is waiting to happen'. In that, and in much more, The Art of Teaching Music succeeds and can be warmly and enthusiastically recommended for the novice, the veteran, and the yet undecided music teacher in waiting.87.9 2008”
 — Michael Quinn, Music Teacher

“Attempting to understand Jorgensen's words and work, as well as the paradigmatic notions that envelop them, has been a learning experience. . . Hopefully, this has resulted in a critique centred not upon the discrepancies of our worldviews, but on the challenges of viewing the world through someone else’s lenses. Jorgensen's are bright and hopeful, care-full and caring, demanding and plural. One will discover much about music education by reading The Art of Teaching Music.11.3 Sept. 2009”
 — Patrick Schmidt, Westminster College of the Arts of Rider University,

“The particular strength of the volume is its usefulness across all levels of music education. Jorgensen offers not only artistic fundamentals unique to those involved in music but also material that will cause readers to reflect on personal characteristics. Detailed notes and references add to the book's value as a study tool. . . . Recommended.November 2008”
 — V. S. Xenakis, State University of New York College at Cortland

“The beauty of this book lies in its embrace and discourse of the ways in which people become music educators, develop their craft over the course of their lives, and influence those around them.March 1, 2009”
 — Greg A. Handel, Northwester State University of Louisiana, Natchitoches

“. . . foremost a book about wisdom: a direct albeit thoughtful attempt to capture the profession for those who, by virtue of time or the nature of their work, may not have a full sense of the music education field. Jorgensen presents us Music Education.”
 — Patrick Schmidt, Westminister Choir College, Rider University

“I have had the pleasure of reading the book manuscript, 'The Art of Teaching Music,' by Estelle Jorgensen. The content explores a variety of ideas that are covered in the myriad of courses experienced by undergraduate students and introduces new ones that are critical to the development of musicians and prospective teachers. Some of these ideas might be alluded to or briefly discussed in methods classes, but not at the level of thoughtful detail as they are entertained and examined in the book. This level of depth would require students and teachers to discuss, dialogue, debate, and reflect over time within and across semesters and courses.Vol. 16.1 Spring 2008”
 — BETTY ANNE YOUNKER, University of Michigan

“. . . offers sound advice for the new teacher or the student who is about to become an in-service teacher. However, the veteran music teacher will also find 'The Art of Teaching Music' to be refreshing, in that it affirms and validates much of what good music teachers know through experience and have been doing by connecting to philosophers and pedagogues inside and outside of music education.”
 — Frank Abrahams, Westminister Choir College, Rider University, Princeton, NJ

“The Art of Teaching Music is a meditation on a lifetime of experience in teaching. What makes it special for music educators is its resonance with idealism and experience. Volume 27/1 - 2010”
 — The British Journal of Music Education

“As an experienced teacher and teacher educator myself much of this book came as a welcome refresher, with new insights along the way to allow for more reflection on my own practice. For every beginning music teacher this should be compulsory reading, going a long way beyond advice for a particular sector, and presenting a picture of music teaching that can be adapted to suit any situation.12.1 March 2010”
 — Diana Harris, The Open University

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Table of Contents


1. Teacher
2. Value
3. Disposition
4. Judgment
5. Leader
6. Musician
7. Listener
8. Performer
9. Composer
10. Organization
11. Design
12. Instruction
13. Imagination
14. Reality