Loyola Music teachers’ experience with distance learning

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Loyola music teachers have been tasked with learning to change their methods of instruction during online learning. 

Loyola band and piano teacher Michael Celenza has made several changes to adapt his curriculum during the current atmosphere. During this past summer, Celenza took twelve instructional classes to discover effective ways to deliver his material during this school year. He also spent the summer scanning sheet music for his students and says online scans have made distributing music sheets much easier. 

Celenza says, “I learned how to transfer all of the material onto Google Docs. I also converted PDF’s of my theory assessments onto Google Slides so that students can take their theory assessments there.”

Celenza even noted that the online transition has helped him get things done faster and more efficiently; however, the online transition has brought about a few problems. With the restrictions of the Zoom application, it is still not possible for music teachers to direct students to play together. 

When asked about his most apparent restraint, Celenza replied, “There are not really that many problems. The biggest problem is when trying to assess the students. About 10% of the time the audio is not very good, but with a few easy changes by changing settings with the background noise it became much better.”

The current restrictions have also motivated teachers like Celenza to focus more on each student’s individual musicianship. He is still able to assess each student’s playing ability through individual performance evaluations. He reports that students have done well on their live performance evaluations via Zoom. 

Celenza stated, “After the pandemic, I hope to come back even stronger with the Mighty Roar, jazz band and music classes.”

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