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CLeaR Fellows 2020 – Dr Millie Locke

Introducing the Orff Approach: contemporary practices in music education

Dr Millie Locke

Dr Millie Locke

Millie is a lecturer in music education in the School of Music. She brings to her role many years of practical experience at all levels of music education from early childhood to tertiary. Her research interests include teacher artistry, composition and improvisation with with children, and the Orff approach in the  Aotearoa New Zealand context.

The 2020 CLeaR teaching and Learning Fellowship enabled Millie to work with her colleagues to develop a mixed delivery (on-line on-campus) postgraduate pathway in Music Education. As well as opening up new areas of study, the pathway’s innovative delivery mode will give access to a wider group of  recent graduates and those working in the field.

This plan is referenced to a significant re-design of a PG Dip Mus (part-time/distance) with a focus on music education which I am developing with Associate Professor David Lines. This complementary postgraduate diploma pathway is envisaged as a combination of on-campus and online learning.

This pathway has a strong focus on equity, inclusiveness and engagement. It acknowledges the wide range of ways into music-making: Not all of those who teach or wish to teach music in schools and communities have learned music in the same way. The complementary workshop/online offerings in this pathway recognised the diversity of music and music education practices and offer the opportunity for critical reflection on these practices. At the same time workshops offered learning opportunities for growth in practical musicianship, practice in contemporary pedagogical approaches and an awareness and appreciation of a wide range of music-making practices.

Online modules will develop academic literacy in music education through engagement with contemporary theory and research. The pathway is also inclusive in that it offers opportunities for students outside of Auckland (including Australian) students to enrol. The workshop/online learning combination is a proven way of expanding student access to courses, particularly at postgraduate level. In particular, it is a responsive way of addressing the needs of students who desire to combine work and study life.

A proposed Memorandum of Agreement between the SoM and Orff New Zealand Aotearoa (ONZA) will also expand the reach of this pathway, since the SoM  became the preferred provider of higher-level professional learning in music education to teachers throughout New Zealand who have been drawn to a practical and theoretical interest in music via the Orff approach. 762 & 763 are courses in the pathway with a focus on creative musical practices and creative pedagogy. Draft ideas for 76X include a focus on contemporary approaches to improvisational and compositional practices relevant to the contemporary Aotearoa/New Zealand setting.

The workshop components of the courses aimed to take account of and utilise the powerful nature of collaborative learning in relationship to the Arts. Meaningful formative assessment was embedded in workshops through regular opportunities for self-evaluation, and peer and teacher feedback. Assessment activities in both workshop and online components gave students the opportunity to engage in projects that connected to their own settings.

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Establishing a pathway in Music education (4.4MB)