Friday, September 25, 2009

Chad Criswell and Music Ed Magic; SmartMusic
Chad Criswell has a review up about SmartMusic 2010 at his site Music Ed Magic. If you don't know about Chad's site, it is really worth a look. Get on his e-mail list and you won't miss an update. He gives SmartMusic 2010 a good review.
I think SmartMusic 2010 is a solid upgrade as well. It is much easier to navigate around to what you need to do as a teacher and a student. I think SmartMusic is worth serious consideration now if you thought it was too hard to use before.
I would like offer a some of tips and encouragement. Take the time to show everyone how to use SmartMusic. Parents and students will need to know install, activate and set up a SmartMusic Grade Book account. There are movies on the SmartMusic site that show them how to do those three key activities.
Using SmartMusic without the Grade Book account is a lot of unnecessary work. It is also how you can set the parameters of the assignments you give. It comes with the educator account and is worth every penny if you work in a school.
There are lots of ways to set kids up with free e-mail accounts. I was surprised by how many of my students had one already. Talk with the people who run the technology in your district for advice and policy help. What you want to avoid is supplying a student access to an email account that the parents don't have access to as well. As a parent I am monitoring what my kids do on the net and a private kid e-mail account doesn't help me.
The really important e-mail address is the notification e-mail. That address is how parents can find out about assignments and other grade book items. The login e-mail can be non-functioning. That can be a big help with families with more than one kid and one e-mail address.
Family computers with internet access are more common than ever. SmartMusic is better than ever. SmartMusic will change how you teach. Maybe now is a good time to start using it.

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