Let's Hear It For Music!
Written by Ava   

How does a professional basketball cheerleader become head of one of the most popular Science blogs out there on the Web today? And how exactly does music fit into all of this? Ask Darlene Cavalier.

The former professional basketball cheerleader for the Philadelphia 76ers also holds a Masters degree from the University of Pennsylvania for studying the role of the citizen in science.  This scientific chick is one smart cookie. And she's helping us see that music is always fun, even when associated with science. 

Last year in an educationally-inspired blog post, Darlene took the time to recognize cultural subjects like music and relate them to her favorite topic: Science.  They were featured alongside each other on The Science Cheerleader, a blog created by Darlene to promote the involvement of citizens in science and science-relate policy.  The blog is also aimed to increase adult science literacy, help people learn about and get involved in citizen science projects, and create opportunities for people to participate in science and technology policy discussion.

Modern Music
Written by Ava   

Cary Stewart is bringing music education to the 21st century as is his blog Third-Stream Music Education which inspires music educators to keep music classes related to modern society by using popular music and culture to teach and equipping them with the resources to do so.  

Cary seems the perfect man for the job!  As the Director of Bands and Middle School Fine Arts Team Leader an American international school in Asia, where he does everything from direct the Jazz Ensemble and Concert Band to conducting a faculty band ensemble, he has the  determination, and the stellar experience to see music education moving forwards and modernizing as the world changes.  

Oh yeah, and did we mention he plays guitar too? He may not be an accomplished guitarist, but he has dabbled in the area so much so that his school has come up with a guitar curriculum where he teaches students how to hold and care for the guitar, how to work left and right hand technique, read pitches, play basic chords, and work with a partner. 

Not bad for a man who has put his music appreciation and education to good use!

Digital Music Revolution
Written by Ava   

Just your average stereotypical band geek? Not exactly.  In our book, Owen Bradley was cool enough to take that determination and drive it takes to play an instrument and conduct an ensemble and put it to good use for a future career as a band director for a high school.  And he knew he wanted to do it since the 10th grade! 

Talk about going for your goals.  Owen Bradley is currently the Band Director and Chairman of the Performing Arts Academy at North Port High School in North Port Florida. A 1988 graduate of the Florida State University, he has been teaching for 20 years in Florida. He holds a Master’s Degree in Curriculum with and emphasis in Integrating Technology in the Classroom and is a Sarasota County Schools NeXt Generation Educator. He is currently working on his doctoral degree in education leadership.

He's also a trained trumpet player and has tried his hands at jazz and has used his skills in musical instruments and technology alike to formulate innovative methods of music education.  

Wait, there's more. He also blogs on the side.  Check out his blog, The Digital Music Educator, all about those non-traditional methods.

Music: The Ultimate Tool
Written by Ava   

Music is an everlasting weapon--a tool that when you master, will certainly take you places.

Playing and teaching it requires practice, discipline, time, and skill.

Now there's something else that requires the same kind of focus and effort. This something requires, like learning music, requires focus and practice, but it's something where simply listening to music will help you along the way. 

That is: learning a new language. Larry Ferlazzo understands all of these similarities and uses them to his advantage when he teaches English as a Second Language.  He makes sure music is readily available with his students because as they use those same skills used to learn a language (practice, discipline, time, and skill) they can also use listening to the music they love as a weapon to pick up that language.

Put two and two together and you have something that is completely and utterly rewarding.  

Larry Ferlazzo, an ESL teacher at the Luther Burbank High School in Sacramento and creator of a website and blog that offers amazing tips and suggestions on how to learn English effectively,  already knows how and he's teaching his students and now, teaching us.  Let's see what he has to say. 

Angela Maiers: Education Master
Written by Ava   

I always knew music played an important part of education. But, in fact, I had no idea how integral it truly was until I spoke to Angela Maiers.  The author, teacher, and creator of Maiers Educational Services, Inc., she has already spanned a 20-year career in education and continues to promote her passion for education extensively.  

She's the author of several books, articles, and curriculum support materials, has done tons of research on how scientific theory and research connect to real world practices, and has even developed various literacy institutes for educators and administrators. 

So where does music fit into the big picture?  Besides playing a role in her own research, Angela has noticed that students who use music in their studies are more motivated and eager to learn.  Just as well, students who take music lessons after school or in their free time have noticeably reached higher levels of discipline in comparison to their peers.  

Here's what this education expert has to say about music's contribution to education and how it's truly changing the world.