Free professional development clock hours

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, necessitating many Music Education Associations (MEAs) cancel conferences, the following professional development resources have been made available for free:

All NAfME professional development is peer-reviewed and specifically developed for music educators by music educators.

Upon successful completion of the article/quiz and accompanying quiz (75% or higher), you earn a certificate of completion valued at “one contact hour.”

Please contact JJ Norman,, with any questions you may have.

14 Music Educators Journal featured articles thought to be directly applicable for teaching online during COVID-19

Simply follow the link at the end of an article title, read the article, and complete the quiz to receive a certificate of completion valued at “one contact hour.”

Free NAfME Academy® Webinars

Simply watch a NAfME Academy webinar below and complete the associated quiz to receive a certificate of completion valued at “one contact hour.”

Learning Targets using Google Classroom – By Karla McClain & Cathy Sullivan

Students are motivated to persist when given the autonomy to engage as leaders of their own learning by working through learning targets to meet benchmarks and achieve goals. Sequenced learning targets and a system for leveled benchmark assessments can provide students with clear and realistic expectations for self-regulated progress. Google Classroom can be used as a tool to provide interventions and Google Forms to collect data on student progress.

Click here to complete the quiz.

Mindset, Grit, and Determination: Keys to Success for Music Teachers and Students of All Needs – By Paul Young

All music teachers can benefit from understanding research findings touting the need to increase students’ character skills, particularly growth mindset, grit, and motivation. Participants will learn how music classrooms can become ideal environments for teaching and developing those skills, and while doing so, increasing their value within schools where these skills will soon be assessed as part of ESSA requirements. Attendees will learn how to model and teach growth mindset and grit traits and discover how perseverance strategies increase academic performance and lead to higher retention rates in music programs. The session content is applicable to all music teachers.

Click here to complete the quiz.

Vocal Profiling: Flexible and Fast Assessment in the Secondary Choral Ensemble – By Joseph Svendsen

This session shares a successfully implemented, standards-based system for assessing individual singers in a secondary ensemble classroom. It incorporates assessment and curricular strategies put forth by Marzano, Wormeli, Understanding by Design, and Authentic Intellectual Work. This session details and teaches how to create a flexible template for collecting valuable data that will shape and improve curriculum and instructional strategy. This data can also be presented as evidence of individual and program-wide growth without requiring competitive comparison to other schools or districts. The template can be customized to reflect the standards and objectives you value.

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The All-Inclusive String Ensemble: Activities and Exercises to Make Every Student Succeed in Strings – By Vivian Gonzalez

Getting Fit for Strings Strength, flexibility and agility are key components to string instrument readiness and success, but many times studio and classroom teachers neglect to focus on these skills. In more than fifteen years of public school teaching and private studio teaching, I have developed specific exercises that target posture and left and right had issues, so that students can acquire new skills faster and with less frustration, tension and injury. These exercises have proven to be especially effective with special learners, who sometimes have fine and gross motor control issues. In this session, I will gladly share the exercises that my students do regularly in my classroom (elementary strings) and private studio (elementary through college) to enhance their overall playing ability.

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Alternative Techniques for Teaching Middle School Band – By Todd Mahaffey

Some specific teaching strategies will be shared that are proven effective for Middle School Band. Additionally, technology resources will be discussed that aid in the implementation of these strategies. Discussion will include, but not be limited to: non-traditional seating charts, strategies for developing well-rounded percussionists, using drones to help with playing in tune, and incorporating chamber music into your curriculum.

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Why Doesn’t My Band Sound Better? Ten of the Most Common Problems Band Directors Make During Rehearsals – By David Snyder

Many band directors are frustrated by sub-par performance from their ensembles and mistakenly blame their students for these reoccurring problems. This clinic will present 10 common mistakes that directors make during rehearsal and some possible solutions for correcting them. These problems can be divided into two basic categories: Time management and critical listening skills.

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Fostering Independent Musicians in the Choral Classroom – By Karla McClain

This webinar will give participants classroom-tested ideas to help students on their path to being independent musicians. Topics such as tools for music literacy, student engagement, assessment and self-evaluation tools, and incorporating the new Core Arts Standards will be covered.

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Essential Time Management Strategies for Teachers – By Emily Schwartz

Without excellent time management skills, even the strongest teachers can become overwhelmed with all of the extra “stuff” that comes with teaching. In this webinar, Schwartz shows new teachers how to set themselves up for success by implementing simple time management strategies from Day 1. Taken from her book, Life in Cut Time: Time Management for Music Teachers, and her professional development workshops, this webinar shows new teachers how to stay organized, develop a plan, avoid common time management mistakes, and stay motivated when unexpected work starts to pile up.


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Top Ten Tips to Energize Your Rehearsal – By Angela Ammerman

Student engagement is an essential component of any music teacher’s job description. Do you have a rehearsal that seems to last forever? Notice the students gawking at the clock in the corner every few minutes? Check out these 10 Tips to energize your rehearsal! An increase in student engagement leads to an increase in musical productivity which results in successful music making. Repetition is important to learning and improving musically but can make rehearsals drag and may cause drowsiness in students. Keep students excited throughout your rehearsal with these invigorating ideas. Raise the ROOF and let your students soar!

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Set Up for Success: Keys to a Well-Run Classroom – By Jenny Nichols

Classroom management is so much more than disciplining the child that is misbehaving. During this webinar I will broaden your view of what classroom management is. I will identify small, yet powerful things that are included in a well-run classroom. Secondly, we will work on establishing routines that will solve your issues. And finally, I hope to help you change your view of your students. I hope to help you see the child that is so difficult with new eyes, and a new heart. My hope is you will leave renewed, ready to make a difference.

Click here to complete the quiz.