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Technology in Music Education: Taking Survey on the Most Popular Music Genre

By Sarah Malburg

Using technology in a music education classroom can be a fun way to introduce your students to the topic of Music Genres. Create a survey, interview the population and record the most popular music genre, all through the use of technology!

The Search for the Most Popular Music Genre in Today’s Society

Teaching your music students about the various music genres can be a challenge for there are so many that exist. There are your main categories such as rock, pop, country, jazz, blues, rap, etc. and then of course there are subcategories of each one as well. Examples of these would include punk, heavy metal, classic rock, alternative rock, ska, etc., all of which fall in the "rock" category alone.

By integrating technology into your music lesson plans and classroom, students will be able to better organize all of the information given to them on a topic and they will get the opportunity to further discuss it with their peers as well.

Here is a technology lesson plan idea for music education teachers, that demonstrates how to create a music survey to gather information, how to use classroom blogs to discuss the results and how to create follow-up activities for your students. Enjoy!

Description of Students

  • This lesson is appropriate for students in grades 6-8. Special needs students may be paired with advanced students to provide assistance if necessary.

Objectives

  • Create a survey using technology(computers)
  • Evaluate a survey and graph results
  • Create and use a blog for student communication
  • Identify how people in society are affected by various music genres

Pre-requisites

  • Students will need to know what a survey is and what purpose it serves
  • Students will need to be familiar with graphing (using a bar or pie graph)
  • Students will need some technology/computer experience
  • Students will have previous knowledge on several popular music genres (i.e. Pop, rock, rap, country, jazz, etc.) including their eras, where they originated and famous artists in each genre. This way they can give examples when surveying the public. This unit should be covered within 2-3 prior class periods.

Materials

  • Computer access for all students (portable laptops or computer lab)
  • Accessibility to a printer
  • Overhead projector
  • Example of a survey with a graph of the results
  • Proxy projector or blackboard
  • Writing utensils(pens/pencils/markers) and writing paper
  • Drawing/graph paper

Websites:

  • www.surveymonkey.com
  • www.blogger.com
  • www.halfbakedsoftware.com/hot_pot.php

Time

  • Four to five 40-45 minute class periods plus a week of survey time

For the lesson plan procedure details and lesson plan suggestions, go to the next article in this series.