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Education Journal Entries

The Ramifications of Post-Modernism in Music

On April 26th, linguist John McWhorter took issue with the 12-tone approach to music and the damage it wrought on modern art music in The New York Times: He alluded to the political undercurrent of atonal classical music, pointing out the comments of Pierre Boulez and the historical fascist response to 12-tone and atonal music. […]

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Education

Where to Start with Classical Music

Someone on the r/ClassicalMusic subreddit asked where someone who lacks a background in music should start if she wants to get into classical music. As someone with a degree in music, I’ve always deemed the music appreciation curricula taught in college electives misguided. The courses I’ve seen teach appreciation as music history lite. However, the […]

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Education Journal Entries

Mapping the musical mind: the link between musical and language processing — Music Education Works

I’ve posted before on the link between linguistic syntax, music, and the research opportunities music could afford a conversation of syntactic acquisition. This article from Music Education Works discusses research out of Japan on the link between music and language. Researchers in Japan have found a specific link between musical processing and areas of the […]

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Education Self-Improvement

Three Tips to Become a Better Communicator

Developing substantive content in EAP communication classes presents unique challenges. Elementary English classes can fall back on rudimentary features of language, but advanced English-language students and native English speakers need something several orders of magnitude higher if they want to grow and improve as communicators. So, I stay vigilant for new approaches that can work […]

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Education Journal Entries

Is Parenting Futile?

If you want to vet someone’s commitment to empirical evidence, the topic of parenting will rile people like little else. More specifically, the argument that parenting has limited influence over the character of children — a proposition that possesses a unique potential to offend people to the left and right of the political divide (which […]

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Education

MEXTESOL 2019: Santiago de Querétaro, Estado de Querétaro, México

MEXTESOL marked my last conference of the 2019 calendar year. Somehow I pulled off three presentations of various mediums in the middle of the fall semester. I chose practical topics this time around–a demonstration on various styles of written corrective feedback, a poster session on computer assisted language teaching (CAPT) with MS Class Notebooks, and […]

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Education

The language carrot …

“I don’t speak,” Bijaz said. “I operate a machine called language. It creaks and groans, but is mine own.” “Dune Messiah” (1969) by Frank Herbert Today, the BBC published an article on what it means to be fluent in a language. Fluency might be the unicorn sighting of the second language universe–that thing everyone carries […]

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Education

The trouble with books …

The next time your students ask if they can rely on books for their research, you can tell them this: Book publishers don’t normally fact-check books. They’ll run sensitive material by lawyers, but otherwise it’s on authors to make sure their work is accurate. Generally, this works out fine. Sometimes, it does not. When books […]

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Education

Shift the onus to them

This is a great article on classroom management: Why shouldn’t students feel entitled? You’ve relieved them of responsibility. Think about it. You assess by legislative fiat, document attendance, lord over technology, interact with students 24-7 via email or text, keep students on track via Blackboard or Canvas, treat students as customers, are blamed for grade […]

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Education

Old guard music education

ClassicalGuitarMagazine.com posted Michael Chapdelaine’s performance of Albéniz’s “Mallorca,” to comemorate the Spanish composer’s birthday, and the performance is delightful. In the notes at YouTube, nonetheless, the artist links to a masterclass Segovia conducted at USC, in which Segovia berates Chapdelaine’s performance of the same piece. Segovia’s manner with the student exemplifies everything that’s wrong with […]