A Raleigh teacher is making sure his talented students get the most out of the art and of music — and he’s doing it in a non-traditional way.
Brian Munoz’ students are so inspired they nominated him for a national award.
In Munoz’ class at Wakefield High School, the students are engulfed in music, and with the benefit of technology.
A special software called “SmartMusic” helps them master the music swiftly.
“It allows them to listen to the pitch, and then they call back on their instrument in the same pitch pattern,” Munoz said.
“So it’s an exercise meant to help their ear as well as their intonation.”
It’s popular homework, he said, for his musically talented students.
“The more practice that I have with it, the better I get when I sight read,” said student Jordan Glass, who plays the violin.
SmartMusic, Munoz said, is for the ear. And sight reading will train them to dissect the music.
The software, Munoz said, “is going to generate a piece of music they haven’t seen before.” The sight reading allows the students to improve at reading rhythms and notes, and trains them to compose their own melodies.
Impressed with his style of teaching, Munoz’ students nominated him for the Great American Teach-off, which included producing five YouTube videos.
“The first one was, ‘How do we use technology to innovate in the class?h” Munoz said.
In the Great American Teach-Off, he finished in the top 10 in the country in the contest.
“It was pretty awesome,” he said. “It gets them involved and interested in the material, and realizing that it’s something that takes effort and time to develop those skills. And it’s worth the achievement afterwards when you’ve put in that commitment.”