Before Pencil and Paper Try Some Alt-Write Techniques:
Writing Steps in Conversational Solfege
John Crever, FAME Endorsed Teacher Trainer
“In Conversational Solfege (CS) the recommended amount of time spent in the Writing Steps (9-12) is significantly less than that spent developing conversational skills at Steps 2-5 (Conversational Solfege.) After mastering the Reading Steps in a unit, it’s natural for students to want to move on to create through writing, and since CS places the conversational thinking of music before the composing step, children learn to imagine what they want first before trying to render it on paper. Child Psychologist Jane Healy describes this same concept for language development.
“Well-reasoned and well-organized writing proceeds from a mind trained to use words analytically. No matter how good, how creative, or how worthy a student’s ideas, their effectiveness is constrained by the language in which they are wrapped. (Writing) demands a firm base of oral language skill. Students who have not learned to line up words effectively when they speak are not going to be able to do so on paper.” Endangered Minds, Jane Healy 1990, page 110.
Through the lens of preference development in children, that is a very empowering concept. I cannot present a study to support this claim, but maybe you agree with this next statement: when people imagine what they desire before attempting to render the idea, they tend to be more inventive, more free from constraints of what lies only before the eyes and more able to tap into what lies below the surface and communicate the expressive musical thoughts that originate in their inner hearing.”
John Crever is a driven educator with more than 28 years of music instructional, coaching, composition, production, management and community-organizing experience. John is endorsed by the Feierabend Association for Music Education (FAME) as a teacher trainer for Conversational Solfege™️ and First Steps in Music©.