Finale in General Music

Recently I gave my first-ever clinic on the subject of “Finale in General Music.” I wondered if anyone would attend. Imagine my surprise when nearly 200 Texas educators did!

In preparing for the clinic, I thought I had everything ready until, dozing the night before, I realized I hadn’t included anything about the Kodály Method.

As I typed the letters “K-O-D-A-L-Y” into Google, hoping to see an example of some Kodály notation that I could emulate for the clinic, I found something I didn’t expect: Two blogs I’d written earlier about that very topic! (This is scary on so many levels—where do I begin…)

General Music is fascinating to me because, on the surface, it can seem almost simplistic. Looking deeper, however, one realizes that the notation needs of the General Music Teacher are often complex. For example, a measure with a whole note usually looks like the example on the left, while the General Music teacher may require a centered whole note: 

Similarly I’d usually beam a measure of eighth notes as seen on the left. In a General Music class, a teacher might need to beam things differently or sometimes flip stems:

My point is simply to illustrate that General Music educators often have very different notational needs, all of which Finale can provide. Add in AlphaNotes™ and support for Boomwhackers and Solfège, and it’s clear that Finale offers the General Music teacher a huge array of specialized tools.

While all of these tools were very well-received in my clinic, Finale’s worksheets may have gotten the biggest response. Having editable, ready-made content that creates a limitless supply of ideas seems irresistible to General Music educators.

Have questions about using any of these tools in your classroom? Have tips you’d be willing to share? Please let me know by clicking on “Comments” below.

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