Lindsay Brazell

Music Educator and Creative Professional

Reimagining Arts Education To Breed Thriving Artists

Jeff Goins has been one of my favorite bloggers for some time now. He has built an awesome community of aspiring writers and creatives, and I have learned so much just from reading his blog, books, and participating in his community. Further, he advocates the work of a creative and even though I may not have a real-person relationship with him, in a way, he’s everyone’s biggest cheerleader.

In Jeff’s last book, The Art of Work, I was so inspired about the thought of apprenticeship in the arts, and how influential those experiences could be for students. He elaborates on this idea further in his new book, Real Artists Don’t Starve, along with so many other nuggets of wisdom about how to live a creative life.

How To Be Successful During Student Teaching

Student teaching can be one of the best experiences in your career, but the time approaching can be a little daunting. Even though it is like teaching with training wheels, it’s your chance to practice everything you have learned (and everything you’ll learn along the way) before you have to do it on your own.

How Not Paying Musicians Greatly Hurts Us

On the very first day of teaching Music Appreciation, I asked students to do just one thing this semester: Be respectful of everything you hear, even if you absolutely hate it.

I explained to them that there were lots of genres of music that I am not particularly fond of, like opera and electronic music. However, there are people that perform those genres, compose for those genres, and study them, and I am grateful that we have people who devote their time to advocate them.

But most importantly, there are people making a living off of their work in those fields, and I can’t imagine robbing those musicians of their livelihood. I asked my students, “Wouldn’t you hate if people didn’t support your career paths, or even your passions?”

How To Make Change Less Scary and More Normal In Your Classroom

One of my favorite parts of an extended break is the possibility of change. A change in pace, a change in routine, and changes in lifestyle!

My response when people ask how I am enjoying my break has been, “It’s amazing and sooooo refreshing!” But then I thought to myself, why can’t all year be amazing and refreshing? Why can’t changes occur during busy seasons of the year?

Gain A Competitive Edge with an Online Portfolio

As music educators, we essentially produce a product for our schools and our communities. Because that product takes time and preparation throughout the school year, it is hard to represent that in words on a paper document. What an online portfolio can do is show videos, images, and reviews of your previous work, in a way that says, “See, I really can do this, and I have had prior success!”

If Reflection Isn’t Part of Your Teaching Routine, Change That Immediately!

If you are a music education major or practicing music educator, you have probably had to write a few reflections on your teaching by now. Depending on the situation, it was either required of you, or you wrote it of your own volition. As an educator, I approve of both scenarios. 🙂

Reflection is one of the best tools for growth as an educator, but it was also a large part of my choir curriculum. I wanted my students to value the reflection process so that whatever field they end up in, they will be equipped with a way to always be improving their skill sets or craft.

One Year Closer To “Dr.”

I am officially done with my first year of my PhD coursework! All that is left before I achieve true freedom is a ton of music appreciation grading, but the end is so very near!

Authentic Recruitment – Forget the Numbers

The end of the school year always brings a weird time of simultaneously ending your year and preparing for the next. Students are graduating and incoming freshmen are going to be exploring their musical options. Naturally, we want them to choose us. I have seen some great recruitment examples, and I have also seen some […]

My PhD Productivity Is My Best System Yet

I’m a huge fan of productivity hacks. I love trying new systems, both digital and analog. As you know, I’m an advocate of the bullet journal system. It’s the best system I’ve seen because it is so flexible in how you utilize it. I could really go on for days. But I’m not going to […]

Gesture vs. Rehearsal Technique – What’s Most Useful?

Recently I have encountered the debate of what is more valuable in a K-12 ensemble classroom: an excellent conducting gesture or rehearsal technique. I say both are definitely important, but I strongly lean towards having more rehearsal chops. Here’s why: I’ve seen some amazing conductors lead TERRIBLE rehearsals.  There is definitely an art to great […]