Music & Arts Education


  • Musical Thread

    In this episode of NJEA’s Classroom Close-up, elementary, middle, and high school music teachers collaborate to form a musical thread tying students’ experiences together as they progress through the school system.  They are practicing what they call “vertical alignment,” a system for communicating about and collaborating on lesson plans across the different aged schools. They hope that other academic subject areas will adopt similar practices to ensure that students are prepared for the next steps in their education.

    Grades: 13+
  • Get on the Wall

    In this episode of NJEA's Classroom Close-up, watch as students at Reading-Fleming Intermediate School in Flemington, NJ "get on the wall" by creating murals for their school. The Mural Club is an after school program for students in fifth and sixth grade. Working closely with teachers, the students paint murals around the school that showcase their studies or extracurricular activities. For example, the mural club created a solar system mural for the science hallway in which the relative sizes of the planets were accurately portrayed. Students research subjects, plan the design, and collaborate to create their murals.

    Grades: 13+
  • Docudrama

    Drama, film, and television students from Franklin Township High School collaborate to entertain and educate in this episode of NJEA’s Classroom Close-up. Students examine the issues of today by exploring issues and events of the past. Together, they create a docudrama that incorporates acting, dancing, and multimedia video production to explore and teach about the Vietnam War. 

    Grades: 13+
  • Yale Distinguished Music Educator

    In this episode of NJEA’s Classroom Close-up, Tom Murphy of the Randolph school district demonstrates what it takes to be a Yale Distinguished Music Educator. His enthusiasm, energy, and love for his job engages his students and is evident in their performances. His innovative teaching techniques, such as having his students video conference with well-known composer, Robert W. Smith, is just one of the reasons he is such a well-respected and successful music educator. 

    Grades: 13+
  • Music Makes a Difference

    Eric Marozine of Joseph F. Cappello School teaches children with autism and cognitive impairments how to enjoy music and develop motor skills in this episode of NJEA’s Classroom Close-up. For these children, small miracles consist of a smile or a simple nod to the music.

    Grades: 13+
  • Music Lasts a Lifetime

    This episode of NJEA’s Classroom Close-up visits Reading Fleming Intermediate School in Flemington where every student has a chance to participate in the music program. Students have the opportunity to learn about and participate in various musical programs including string orchestra, chimes, band, chorus and guitar/ukulele. The overall goal is to create life-long learners who are well-rounded citizens that incorporate music into their lives.

    Grades: 13+
  • Music Integration

    In this episode of NJEA’s Classroom Close-up, Fort Lee’s School No. 1 is using music to extend concentration among general and special education students in kindergarten through second grade. In addition, working one-on-one using dials to analyze a student’s response to various genres of music, educators are studying the impact the music has on a student’s ability to focus, which will help to improve and enhance student learning.

    Grades: 13+
  • Butterflies and Voices

    In this episode of NJEA's Classroom Close-up, students at Glassboro High School create art from nature as part of the Voices from the Land project.
    Grades: 13+
  • Classroom Close Up NJ | Cafe Kids

    Visit Tulsa Trail Elementary School's student-run cafe. Through their job responsibilities at the cafe, the students learn life skills alongside math, language arts, speech, and art.

    Grades: 3, 13+
  • Mosaic Mural

    This episode of NJEA’s Classroom Close-up explores the making of a mosaic mural by students at Glen Rock’s Richard E. Byrd School that commemorates the Antarctic explorer, Richard Byrd. Students researched Byrd and his travels before putting together individual mosaics that – placed together on the side of the school building – create a cohesive picture of Byrd’s exploits. 

    Grades: 13+
  • Art of Comprehension

    An art teacher, a fourth grade teacher and a fifth grade teacher teamed up at Elms Elementary School in Jackson Township, NJ when they realized that the cognitive processes involved in reading comprehension were almost identical to those involved in pictorial comprehension. They developed a program called the Art of Comprehension, which integrates visual anaylsis into lessons across the curriculum. The program aims to increase students' critical thinking skills and make art more accessible and understandable. Early data also suggests that the program is increasing students‘ standardized test scores.

    Grades: 13+
  • Music Learning Theory

    Music teacher Natalia Sigmund believes music can help children socially, emotionally, and even academically. She believes the secret to learning music successfully lies in the way the student is taught. Sigmund, who also runs the award-winning after school chorus "Music Makers," abides by a music learning theory developed by Dr. Edwin Gordon. In this video, her students demonstrate that there is a close parallel between the way individuals learn music and language.

    Grades: 13+
  • Rock Star Ralph

    Music teacher Randy “Ralph” Raab of East Hanover Township, NJ engages his students and addresses the diversity of skill levels in the classroom with a mix of teaching techniques. He introduces pre-kindergarten students to the mechanics of the violin before singing and dancing to a song about a cookie. For older students, he incorporates game-based learning to the study of classical composers and music theory. Raab believes that music programs increase student test scores, attendance and self-esteem, and advocates for their importance in schools.

    Grades: 13+

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