Songwriting in Modern Band?: Considering Constructivism as an Approach for Teaching Popular Music

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The study of popular music in public education is currently gaining momentum in American schools. Modern Band has been identified as a leading force in this movement, positioning itself as a catalyst for expanding the scope of music offerings in curricula across the US.  After considering what guides the Modern Band movement, this article argues that a new direction for it is warranted via the use of songwriting. Using Webster’s four tenets of constructivism (2011), this article offers a conceptual model in support of Modern Band programs where songwriting and learner-constructed experiences are central to its identity. Implications for Modern Band teachers and their students are provided in the article’s conclusion.

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Last modified on Wednesday, 20/10/2021

Jonathan Kladder

Jonathan Kladder is Assistant Professor of Music Education at Ithaca College where he teaches courses in instrumental undergraduate music education. His research interests lie in the intersections of music and technology, creativity, and curricular expansion, with a special interest in pedagogical models supporting learner-centered approaches across contemporary music-making spaces.

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