About Me


I am a certified Orff-Schulwerk elementary music teacher, teaching in an urban school. I switched from secondary to elementary music teaching in 2006 and it's been the best move (not financially! ) of my career. If you want to have major impact on students concerning music education, elementary is where it is happening. Disclaimer: The topics in my blog do not necessarily reflect what is happening in my current teaching position or with my current students, administration etc. I have a long teaching history and may chose to deal with an element or problem that I have witnessed or experienced in a previous school or have seen being dealt with by other teachers I have encountered...so there!

Showing Tag: "orff" (Show all posts)

Ok, Kids. Create Some Movement! Duhhhhh.

Posted by Jerry Bradley on Friday, April 10, 2015,
Even if your 4th, 5th, and 6th graders have done movement in your class, there are some groups who will just stare at you with calf eyes when asked to create some simple movement for a song. Some classes will jump right into it, but I recently had a class that spent more time talking about movement than actually doing it. For this group, I came up with a movement word list and a set of cards that could help them get started. I'm happy to say that it worked for them. My Word files for the card...
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Free Orff Music Lessons for Teachers

Posted by The Orffsite Webmaster on Wednesday, August 14, 2013,
I've posted a "Trailer" for my book, Orff Adventures for Children. The video covers two lessons from the book. The lessons in the book have been kid tested and worked well with my students. Enjoy the free lessons, and I hope you will consider getting the book for yourself. Purchases will help me keep my website, www.orffsite.com going. Thanks. Click here to view the free lessons.
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Orff Adventures for Children is Now Available

Posted by The Orffsite Webmaster on Friday, March 22, 2013,
My new book is now available. Thanks to all the teachers who have already purchased it, even before this announcement.
I hope you find it useful. I think you'd find it's worth the price just for the Gator in the Kitchen song. My third graders love the tune and ask to review it throughout the year. To you who get the book, I will be making available some sound files to accompany the information in the book. I will be posting the files on this website. The book is available through the link at t...

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Orff Adventures for Children

Posted by The Orffsite Webmaster on Saturday, March 16, 2013,
I'll have a new book out in a few days, Orff Adventures for Children. It will have ten arrangements for body percussion, movement, speech, non-pitched percussion and Orff Instruments. It will have both original and folk song arrangements. It will be available as a physical book and as a Kindle book. These are arrangements I use with my classes and they are well received. Be watching here, and following me on Twitter to see when it's ready. I'll have a special price for Twitter followers and r...
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It's Not on the Test!

Posted by The Orffsite Webmaster on Friday, February 24, 2012,
I'm not really a boat rocker. I can be a bit annoying, however. I don't know the history, but some while back, my district thought that giving our 3rd and 4th graders a music assessment test was and idea who's time had come. I'm not arguing that point in this post. I am saying that the current test is not a measure of whether or not my students are learning music, nor a gauge of what kind of job I'm doing in elementary music. I frankly, don't have a clue as to what it is designed to do except...
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Rubrics and Evaluation Ideas for Orff Teachers

Posted by The Orffsite Webmaster on Monday, February 6, 2012,

Originally Posted by The Orffsite Webmaster on Sunday, January 8, 2012

This blog is short and sweet, really sweet!  As I told my Twitter followers, you will want to kiss my feet in gratitude after checking this out! ha. The folks who put these evaluation rubric ideas together are the ones who really get what Orff Approach teachers actually do in the classroom. You won't find much evaluation of music literacy, symbols, lines/spaces, etc. You will find things like creativity, movement, playing...


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More #Orff Tweeters, Please!

Posted by The Orffsite Webmaster on Monday, February 6, 2012,

Originally Posted by The Orffsite Webmaster on Saturday, July 23, 2011

I've written previously about building your own Personal Learning Network (PLN) using Twitter. The news is getting out. It is a valuable resource for elementary music teachers and music teachers in general. Unfortunately, the word hasn't seemed to have spread across the land of Orff-Schulwerk . So far I've discovered only about ten folks who Tweet anything related to Orff process, instruments, lesson plans, books, use of ...


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Are You a Trained "Orff" Teacher or Did You Just Take the Classes?

Posted by The Orffsite Webmaster on Monday, February 6, 2012,

Originally Posted by The Orffsite Webmaster on Monday, June 6, 2011

It's summer time! Time for many of you to take more training in your profession. I have taken Orff Level classes for the last three summers and am "taking off" this summer. I'm actually going to be busy writing arrangements and lesson plans. I'll be brushing up on my djembe technique via YouTube lessons and completing a couple of podcasts. Back to the subject...
I hope that as you take the Orff Levels you are beginning to cr...


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Twitter Folks-Please use #Orff in your Orff Related Posts

Posted by The Orffsite Webmaster on Monday, February 6, 2012,

Originally Posted by The Orffsite Webmaster on Tuesday, May 31, 2011

It is really tough weeding through all the irrelevant and even offensive posts when conducting a Twitter search using Orff for the search term. I just want to find tweets concerned with how others are using the Orff Approach in the classroom. I'm looking for Orff based lessons, books, musical instruments etc. Instead I find 500 comments on Orff's "O Fortuna", which is fabulous (but I've heard it, already!) The worst is find...


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I Know I'm Teaching It-Why Aren't They Getting It?

Posted by The Orffsite Webmaster on Monday, February 6, 2012,

Originally Posted by The Orffsite Webmaster on Sunday, April 10, 2011

You've recently attended a great Orff workshop. The presenter methodically guided you through the lessons and gave you detailed notes and exact procedures. You get back home and are excited to share the lesson with your students. You begin the lesson just like you witnessed it, but sometime before step 3, you get this sick feeling that you've lost them. Something's not right. You taught them exactly like your workshop pres...


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I Get Mail

Posted by The Orffsite Webmaster on Monday, February 6, 2012,

Originally Posted by The Orffsite Webmaster on Monday, September 6, 2010

Talking about approaches to teaching elementary music can sometimes resemble a discussion about religion! My purpose here is to share a way that's worked for me and not to bash another approach. In fairness, here's an email I recently received. Elementary music teaching is a big world. Orff-Schulwerk is the area I'm exploring, but it's not the only part of the universe. Dive in. The water's fine. Here's an email comment...


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The Orff Approach is like......

Posted by The Orffsite Webmaster on Monday, February 6, 2012,

Originally Posted by The Orffsite Webmaster on Friday, July 16, 2010

The Orff Approach is like teaching a kid to swim. You don't first sit them down with a book and tell them to read it and learn the terminology. With Orff, you put the kid in the water first. You have the whole process of swimming broken down into elemental pieces and start with the easiest and build on it until the kid is swimming. They learn to hold their breath and make bubbles in the water. Learning is a game. They play ...


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What I Learned in Level III Orff-Schulwerk

Posted by The Orffsite Webmaster on Sunday, February 5, 2012,

What I Learned in Level III

Posted by The Orffsite Webmaster on Monday, July 12, 2010

Well, I'm officially certified in Orff-Schulwerk. That means I know enough about the approach it to be dangerous! My Level III instructors did a great job in dealing with process and sequence, which is really what attracted me to Orff-Schulwerk in the first place..no it wasn't identifying Lydian modes and playing the recorder, although I improved at both. I was pleased to find out that no matter how badly ...


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So Long Performance Base Music Education

Posted by Jerry Bradley on Wednesday, January 11, 2012,

Posted by The Orffsite Webmaster on Saturday, July 31, 2010

As an Orff-Schulwerk elementary teacher and a former secondary music teacher, I can say I'm glad to have almost gotten out of the music contest level of instruction. In secondary music, recruiting and comparing my first division with another schools first division was of primary importance. Outside performances was next on the list, after all, a performing group must perform. Sure, I had non-varsity groups where students with lesser...


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