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Identity, Belonging, & Agency: Social Emotional Learning in Music

Updated: Oct 13, 2021

When imagining the traditional structure of a music program, most people might think of a group of young musicians gathered together in a classroom to practice and polish a piece of music under the direction of their music teacher. However, the pandemic brought challenges to this traditional model and music educators around the world began to rethink the structure of music education to instead imagine a new approach built on the foundation of Social Emotional Learning (SEL) with musical creativity at its center.


"When SEL practices are folded into creative music-making projects, students (and teachers) can become highly motivated to dive deeper into self-reflective and engaging music-making experiences. Giving priority for students to create music within our regular allotted time

for rehearsal (rather than measuring success against how well they can perform the music from the standard canon) can create opportunities for students to explore their individual interests/sounds, foster new connections with peers, and explore topics through music that are important to them."


Learn more about how SEL, one of the key components of the Boston Music Project Curriculum, can be woven into music education pedagogy to promote confidence, collaboration, and community-building in this article for the National Association for Music Education co-authored by BMP’s Executive Director Christopher Schroeder, Dr. Scott Edgar, and Dr. Michael P. Fleischmann.

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