Today’s music teachers are faced with new challenges: Students live in a fast-paced “wow-me” world; they are not necessarily motivated by intrinsic values, but rather seek to be entertained by something or someone. Oftentimes, computers fulfill this role, playing a large part in the lives of students. Computers can entertain, can provide a vehicle for learning, and are filled with all the bells and whistles technology has to offer. In no way will computers ever replace music teachers, but teachers can supplement lessons to include websites designed to help students gain skills while using the computer and the wonders of technology. It would virtually be impossible to offer a comprehensive list of music websites; however, MTNA offers this overview of selected websites that teachers might find helpful for augmenting lesson materials-particularly to enhance those six practice days between lessons!
While the myriad links and searches produce hundreds and hundreds of results, the following sites represent a researched sampling of the musical, youth-oriented websites on the Internet today. Many sites offer areas for teachers and parents. In addition, we have listed some good search sites. We encourage all teachers to search and seek out websites. Please share your results with us so we may continue to update this list.
World Music With DARIA is a website from this multiple award-winning educator and musician. The website was given a 2009 Parent’s Choice Award for its family-friendly introduction of world music to young people and it’s resources for teachers, parents, and special education professionals. The instrument section allows children to color, hear and find pdf instructions on how to make world music instruments such as cajónes (box drums), didgeridoos, shekeres, pow-wow drums, and guiros along with cultural background information.
The From The Top website is designed for young classical musicians. This clever website has The Green Room, Hall of Fame, Answer Zone, Student Lounge, a Reference Room, and an area for parents and teachers. Partnered with the highly successful From The Top radio program, this site offers the more “serious” young musicians an opportunity to hear from others like them and benefit from the socialization of sorts with others like themselves.
JazzKids was created for children of all ages. The website offers teachers, parents, and even the youngest students the opportunity to be introduced to jazz. The interactive audio, video, and curriculum are not intended to replace a teacher!
The new SFSKids presents an updated online experience entirely different from the original SFSKids. Some of the brand-new features and content throughout SFSKids include a fun and playful series of educational modules presented as immersive environments and using animal avatars as guides; the ability to explore various linkages between composers, instruments, and music compositions; the use of some game-based techniques to motivate repeated listening and engagement; gesture-controlled simulation scenarios using the mouse and keyboard to provide “hands-on” experiences of playing an instrument and conducting music; interactive online tutorials to learn about music basics; the opportunity for users to compose and notate their own original music; and much more.
The site features games, listen and learn, and various teacher resources, from the Dallas Symphony Orchestra.
Great graphics and fun games-like the clarinet scavenger hunt-make this New York Philharmonic website great, especially for instrumental students.
LSO Play allows you to experience the orchestra from multiple points of view.
This website contains hundreds of learning games of varying levels, all carefully planned to gain mastery of the elements of music theory, ear training, and rhythmic skills in an exciting, challenging environment.
This site is just for kids—to talk to other kids about piano, listen to the Taz-man, jump to other cool places, time travel to meet a famous composer or pianist, get a great tip to help with lessons, get help with writing piano or music reports or even ask a question!
The Yellow Cat piano program offers students the opportunity to excel at the piano. Its learning methods enable students to learn quickly and to achieve higher levels of success than the standard music program.
Funbrain offers games on composers, instruments, reading, and vocabulary.
Learning about and listening to different instruments, reading music, musical genres, and links to additional sites are the features of this site.
This is a great site for music theory.
This site includes games and songs. You also can use this site to search for more related sites.
“Name That Tune,” a link to the American Symphony Orchestra League, Instruments, lesson plans, and games all can be found on this website.
This site offers many links to quality classical music sites.
Features online, interactive piano lessons that can be used in conjunction with traditional piano lessons.
Includes quality theory tutorials, and interactive identification and ear training drills in note reading, key signatures, intervals, and triads.
Students can test their music knowledge with quizzes, matches, concentration card games, and other activities.
Elementary-age students can enjoy exploring, creating, and manipulating music.
Elementary students can enjoy playing with an interactive Improvisation Station.
Enable students to compose from a MIDI keyboard and add voice-overs or other audio recorded through a microphone.
Access online accompaniments that function as virtual accompanists.
This site is devoted to ear training and theory skills.
This site offers ear training and theory skills.
This site contains lots of free music resources for elementary music classroom teachers, private music instructors, and homeschool parents, for the purpose of building kids up in positive ways and enriching their lives with an appreciation for music and learning.
Happy Note! music games (shareware and freeware) are both amusing and educational. They offer a way to learn to read music notes in treble clef and bass clef the fun way.
A music educational portal designed especially for kids and music beginners. Primarily focusing on the piano basics, they produce games to learn music easily with fun.
KidsClick! is a web search site designed for kids by librarians—with kid-friendly results! The site includes links to kid-friendly websites about music and music history.
Sphinx Kids contains interactive games and videos.
Classics for Kids contains games, music lessons, lesson plans, and information on composers and classical music. (For students and teachers.)
Fun music stuff just for kids.
Theta Music Trainer features music and ear training games.
Contains an online music theory guide, articles about music theory, and a Java-enhanced script for the interactive play.
A fabulous general resource page from the Piano Technicians Guild for anyone involved in any way with keyboard instruments.
An extremely comprehensive resource with great references to the composer’s pages and information.
This site is great and has links to information on how to practice.
This is an advocacy site for teachers with many resources such as free lesson plans, guides, teacher grants, scholarships, continuing education information, and more.
A comprehensive guide to teaching resources for all grades and subjects. There is an entire section of music-teaching resources, including free sheet music and theory exercises.
Piano Teacher’s Playground
This resource site features printable games, free printable music theory worksheets that are fun for kids, holiday worksheets with fun themes and colorful graphics, and more.
To raise awareness about hearing health, MTNA has partnered with the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), which has developed the award-winning “Listen To Your Buds” campaign. The campaign educates the very young about practicing safe listening habits such as turning down the volume and taking listening breaks when they use personal audio technology so they can avoid the devasting, lifelong effects that can accompany hearing loss.