I’m very excited to announce the acquisition of a new iPad for my teaching practice!…and many thanks to my family (namely my dad) for this wonderful surprise. Although I have seen great results with the new video recorder and monitor I bought last year for my Achord studio, the students at Kolacny Music did not have the benefit of that large monitor (the small viewing screen of the Zoom Q3HD video recorder is too small for the kinds of details we need to observe). The iPad’s High Definition video recorder (with sound), and its larger screen, with brilliant colors and sharp contrast is perfect for the critical observations a musician must make.
iPads are so ubiquitous in today’s society, so I won’t go into all of it’s capabilities. Besides popular apps like a metronome and tuner (both more sophisticated than my stand alone units), I am thrilled to now have access to the internet while teaching. Conner (a high school student) was the first one to use it in his lesson. Since we were working on improvisation that day, I went to my blog and a recent post: ‘Using “Shapes” to Improve the Structure of Improvised Solos and Compositions.’ With the iPad sitting on the music stand, Conner was able to play through the written examples on his trumpet (see one directly below) while I accompanied him on piano. Also, since he was more familiar with the iPad than I was (you can call me a rookie), he was also able to show me a couple of tricks with it that I was not aware of. Thanks Conner!
B. iP. (before iPad), I would tell students to check my blog for specific posts that were related to the work we were doing, or were about to do…or would mention a great player or piece of music they should check out on YouTube. The problem was the loss of momentum between the lesson and when (or if) they were able to follow through on the assignment. I can see that being able to work with those kinds of examples right in the course of the lesson will increase their impact, and inspire the student to return to the relevant sites again on their own.
Those of you with iPads can probably envision even more uses in the teaching context than me right now, but I’m looking forward to using this wonderful tool, and discovering new ways to constantly elevate the musical experience and the joy of discovery…both in my life, and in the lives of those who I have the privilege and honor of working with.