Boonshaft’s Blog

#105. Hmm…

#105. Hmm…

Orson Scott Card wrote: “To a man with only a hammer, a screw is a defective nail.” Far too often over the years I have found it easy to use the success and progress of most...

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#103. Have Fun!

#103. Have Fun!

Do you have fun in rehearsals? Do your students have fun in rehearsals? Maybe not every minute of every rehearsal, but in general? I am convinced that if the first is true, the...

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#101. The Squeak Test

#101. The Squeak Test

A great way to help clarinetists know how much of the mouthpiece to have in their mouth, and prevent the all too common problem of them using too little, is to have them play an...

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#100. An Autograph

#100. An Autograph

At the start of your next rehearsal, write this anonymous quote on the board. I wouldn’t say a word. I would just stand and stare at it. “Every job is a self-portrait of the...

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#99. Easier Can Be Better

#99. Easier Can Be Better

I am convinced that too many students quit instrumental music because they just don’t think they are very good at it. I think one way we can combat that is by playing technically...

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#98. 30 Years

#98. 30 Years

It is the start of a new school year that is full of hopes and possibilities. As I think about it, I am reminded of a question my dear friend, the remarkable string pedagogue Bob...

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#97. You ARE Good At It!

#97. You ARE Good At It!

Why do our students quit instrumental music?  Well, we have all read studies that outline a vast number of causes, and I am sure they all contribute to the large number of...

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Dr. Boonshaft, Director of Education for KHS America, is the author of the critically acclaimed best-selling books Teaching Music with Passion, Teaching Music with Purpose, and Teaching Music with Promise. Dr. Boonshaft is currently on the faculty of Hofstra University in Hempstead, New York, where he is Professor of Music. He was honored by the National Association for Music Education and Music For All as the first recipient of the “George M. Parks Award for Leadership in Music Education.”