Imagination Before Notation: Incorporating Audiation-Based Composition in the Elementary General Music Classroom
Kiefer, Emily C.
University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, College of Fine Arts and Communication
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This paper explores the importance of audiation in musical composition, the history of the Very Young Composers (VYC) program, and various methods for implementing audiation, i.e., musical thinking, in composition within the elementary music classroom. The methods are based on the National Standards for Music Education and the basic tenet of VYC, which is that children do not need to be taught how to compose; rather, they need a developmentally appropriate way to document their compositions. To address the disconnect between creativity and notation, three different audiation-based techniques explored in this paper are the Arioso method, the VYC Classroom Adaptation, and the Group Collaboration method. These methods vary in their strengths, and the choice of method will depend on the teacher’s goals and unique classroom circumstances. However, all three techniques emphasize audiation by requiring musical imagination first and notation second.