SummerCompositionIdeasLast week, I sent my students away with a list of new pieces and technique to learn over their short break before the summer semester begins. Now during breaks, some people think teachers just get to kick back and relax… It may be true for some people but for me, it’s not. I seem to spend even more time planning games, writing new music for students, and putting together ideas for my students! So this week I wanted to share one of my ideas with you.

My students love composing! Usually we use a concept  or a fun title to get their creative juices flowing and then off they go. In the summer, I encourage them to compose something a bit more serious than their regular short compositions in hopes of producing a piece we can record and turn in to a competition or two in the fall. Several of my students have won small prizes and performing opportunities at composer concerts over the years. It really encourages them to be creative and not be afraid to express themselves through music!

This summer, I wrote up a short list to send to parents and students. I’m printing out the list myself and I will put it into a frame so they can look at the ideas again at lessons.  When I made the list, I tried to use ideas that students at every level could use and understand. Student will pick one inspiring idea each week and create several compositions to choose from at the end of the summer!  Here’s link to the file: SummerCompositionIdeas. Hope your students enjoy it!

Author: Whitney

Whitney Hawker, NCTM, teaches group and private piano at Weber State University, Utah. She loves surprising students with the perfect piece or a new exciting game! After graduate school, she missed sharing ideas and resources daily with colleagues so she and her friend, Spring, began blogging together at

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