What a whirlwind year! Here we are at Spring Break, so for the rest of my posts here, I'm going to pull from my experiences in the first 3/4 of the year.
Tool #3: Online Video and Image Resources
As a music teacher, copyright and fair use practices are something I take great care in following, and have known about for quite some time. As a result of this tool, I did take the time to look further into the public domain, regarding published music, and have found some really great resources that are available. I like these two sites in particular: The Public Domain Project and The International Music Score Library Project. I also understand that lots of people are willing to share information, videos, and pictures for the public good, just in general.
When it comes to teaching lessons about the music of other world cultures, YouTube has been a great resource to use, as it is popular all over the world and you can find some very authentic performance videos with sometimes obscure instruments. Even just a few years ago, teaching students about world instruments was difficult as you only had limited text/CD resources from which to draw information, but now with YouTube, the students can really have a much clearer idea of not only what the instrument looks like, but how it is actually played.
In addition to world music, YouTube has also been a great resource to teach students about Western music, with videos of different ensembles to help teach about the instruments of the orchestra. I love these four examples to help teach the four instrument families:
Woodwind Quintet Brass Quintet String Quartet Percussion Ensemble
With regard to Dropbox and its features, I think that it is definitely a convenient tool to have, primarily to make sure you have all of your files in one place, when you need them. I have had the server go down in the middle of class before, with a file that I needed for that class, so I learned a great lesson to back up what you need in a secondary secure location, such as Dropbox. Plus, if you were to move schools or school districts at any point, you don't have to move all of your files from your district computer or server, and you can always keep them organized!