Rediscovering musical identity through narrative in pre-service teacher education
Most elementary music instruction in Ontario is delivered by generalist teachers, despite a rigorous provincial curriculum that is challenging even for well-trained music specialists. Elementary pre-service teacher candidates approach music methods courses with a range of musicianship and musical experiences. For most of them, music education concluded after the middle school years, and at best it continued through secondary school. Some teacher candidates approach the music methods course with anxiety and fear, as they struggle with memories of music education that was ineffective, superficial, or in some cases even abusive. As they perceive a gap between their level of musicianship and that which is needed to support professional music educatorship, some teacher candidates reject the possibility of developing any musical or pedagogical skills before the course even begins. The primary goal of the author's elementary music methods course is to reconnect elementary generalist teacher candidates with the music in their lives, and to empower them to engage in musical thinking and action. This one-course journey begins and ends with the teacher candidates' exploration of their musical histories through the creation of visual, textual, or performative narratives. As they examine the sometimes long-forgotten troves of their musical and educational experience, they open themselves to discovery and learning in and through music, and clear pathways to the possibility of music education in their professional futures.
Adler, A. (2012)., Rediscovering musical identity through narrative in pre-service teacher education, in M. S. Barrett & S. L. Stauffer (eds.), Narrative soundings, Dordrecht, Springer, pp. 161-178.
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