SmartMusic Survey Results

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    Just thought I’d post the results here as well.

    Question 1: Has/is SmartMusic an effective practice and assessment tool in your program? (15 Responses)
    Yes – 11
    No – 4

    Question 2: How was student reception to SmartMusic, especially in regards to practicing at home and the upfront financial cost? (13 Responses)
    Very Receptive – 1
    Somewhat Receptive – 9
    Not Receptive – 2
    Resistant – 1

    Question 3: How was parent reception to SmartMusic, especially in regards to practicing at home and the upfront financial cost? (13 Responses)
    Very Receptive – 1
    Somewhat Receptive – 8
    Not Receptive – 4
    Resistant – 0

    Question 4: Has this program made your job as an educator more effective and efficient?
    Yes – 11
    No – 3

    Question 5: Does your School District offer financial support to students who cannot afford the program/microphone?
    Yes, by providing assistance to Low Income Students – 1
    Yes, by allowing practice room subscription access – 5
    No, students are responsible for all cost – 4
    Yes, District pays every subscription – 1

    Question 6: Other Comments
    +We tried it at the middle school level for a couple of years, and it was a pretty substantial flop. The testing was not always accurate, and our middle school director felt constrained to only pick music that was already on SmartMusic for his ensembles to utilize it fully.

    + I have used Smartmusic mostly to augment my teaching, and to track assessment. I don’t use it exclusively, but I bought practice room subscriptions and then the students do not have to purchase their own subscription. Just seemed to work better. My go-getter students also buy it for at home. I regularly use the rhythm ex. for class and individual use.

    + The biggest problem with implementing SmartMusic is internet access. The older versions only required occasional logons for updates etc. However, the new version requires access every time. Many rural kids do not have either the equipment and in many cases access to internet. As an in school practice/assessment tool it works great! It might also work well to get ipads with wifi to check out to “isolated” families.
    The biggest obstacle I found with administration is that it is a subscription and ongoing fee. However, I used it to my advantage in both Chug and Glendo.

    + This is an incredibly helpful tool for getting students to read music in our choir classrooms every day. It’s a little more difficult incorporating it into our band classrooms as the students can’t read the same piece on the screen due to their instruments. It’s far more valuable when it comes to solo/small ensemble season. We can allow students to go practice their pieces with less worry of them learning the piece wrong. This allows us to focus on more musical aspects of teaching music with the students as opposed to notes and rhythms. We’re still in the process of incorporating it into individual student’s homes due to the individual cost and interest.

    + We don’t have the student use SmartMusic at home. This is something that our district renews every year and we use in the classroom on a daily basis. I use it strictly for sight reading help, but I know of other teachers in the district using it to help with practice for solo and small ensemble type things as well.

    + Currently, we only have Smartmusic for every high school band and orchestra student (About 135 subscriptions). We were able to implement it as part of the Ipad 1:1 program launched this year. There is definitely a “learning curve” involved for everyone, but I think it will very beneficial over time and I hope we can implement it at the middle and elementary levels (which is really what it is designed for in the first place) in the future.

    + Be patient with the students. It will take a while for them get the concept of using the microphone and being accurate on assessments. Do a few practice assessments before you do one for grading.

    + I have heard it was a beneficial program, but do not have it in my classroom.

    + I only had at school access, but my kids loved it. I worked on sight singing everyday as a group. While not as effective at showing individual pitch issues, it made sight singing like a fun game. Many of my kids got very good at it!

    + Nothing can compare to one-on-one lessons with students in person. It is the most effective way to determine where each student is struggling and finding ways to help them. I have also found this practice to be very helpful in getting students interested in practicing. They actually learn HOW to practice with me. SmartMusic is a great tool to use if your district requires data and your program has a lot of students. As for requiring students to purchase a subscription, unless the school will pay for ALL of them, it would be very difficult for you to make every student pay for one. This could easily cause a lot of attrition in the program (parents don’t like paying since many already bought the instruments). It is great for playing tests, rhythm practice, and note naming. Great tool to use, but again, not a huge factor in practicing. Even with a grant purchasing EVERY student a subscription, we still had almost none of the students use it. Hope this helps!

    + The student subscription rate at my school is very, very low. We have two practice room subscriptions set up, however the process for moving students through for testing takes quite a bit of time. The assessment side of things is wonderful, and I have made use of it to demonstrate music for my groups and individual students. Overall, I’d say it is a fantastic tool, but it isn’t without its limitations.

    + I use it for band and choir. The students love the assessment piece, I love the vocal warmups and the ability to change speed at pitch with the MP3 feature. The cost of a metronome and a tuner would exceed the price of the subscription, which you can get with the program.’

    + I’ve attempted to implement Smart Music in two different situations. Both have been unsuccessful. Although, I really think this could work if implemented correctly. The step that failed for me was getting the students to set up at home and get subscriptions. Parents are inundated with information and little jobs to do for their kids at school and when I’ve attempted to get this one up and going it has been met with indifference from students and parents both times. Quite possibly I needed to do a better “campaign” to get it to be successful.

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