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[WSMTE] WSMTE information

Greetings, everyone!
Apologies for getting this information to you so late. I have finally gleaned through my notes from our meeting during WMEA conference and believe that this accurately articulates our discussion with Dr. Jorgensen. Some of what you see here will also be a part of my article for January WSM so sorry about the duplication:

During our WSMTE meeting on Oct. 24th, we discussed our perceptions regarding the state of music teacher education in Wisconsin and considered our future. Our facilitator/mentor for this meeting, music teacher-scholar Dr. Estelle Jorgensen, helped us frame our conversations. We began by sharing information regarding our various music teacher education degrees. Our degree plans outline a course of study from 4 to 4 ½ years, although some students do take longer to complete their degrees. PI 34 has impacted our curricula and field experiences. Issues regarding secondary general music and the inclusion of a music education component to entrance auditions were discussed. Our students are licensed in instrumental, choral or general music or a combination of choral/general or instrumental/general areas. Listening to our discussion, Dr. Jorgensen organized questions we may want to consider for the future. These were:

1.      What is essential to music education training?
2.      Is preparing a teacher more than credits associated with coursework?
3.      Are we thinking strategically or trying to keep and protect?
4.      Do students want to learn what we want to teach them? (for example, what are we doing to "marry" popular culture and
        traditional culture?)
5.      What do we see for the future as we consider 21st century skills?
a.      What does the music sound like?
b.      What does our teaching look like?
c.      How do we make learning meaningful to the 21st century student?
6.      How could a conversation about 21st century skills be opened to teachers across the state?

Another part of our discussion dealt with the idea that exemplary music teachers have a knowledge base/expertise to share and access to that 'data' isn't necessarily available. The premise is that all of us teachers and our students can benefit from the critical behaviors and strategies observable from these teachers. Shelia Frey-Shaw volunteered to develop a research project which would investigate these knowledge, skills, and dispositions of exemplary teachers. What we did not discuss were any delimiters (Public school teachers? Private school? University? Other?) or, other than to use past 'teacher of the year' recipients, how we might determine who is included in the study.

Our next meeting will be in February. The agenda will be for us to tackle some of these questions, with question #5c from the above list being the umbrella for the others. Let me know your date preferences and whether you would rather meet at the Center or at UWSP. I would be glad to host us at UWEC but that may be a further drive than some can do.

Also, your email responses to any of the above ideas/questions can help us get this conversation started right now!


Dr. Vanissa B. Murphy, Chair
Wisconsin Society for Music Teacher Education

Professor, Music and Theatre Arts
Dept. of Music and Theatre Arts
University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire