Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 2023

Course Description

Woodwind Techniques is a group instruction course designed to acquaint students with the basic skills necessary for playing and teaching flutes, clarinets, and saxophones. Students will learn assembly and care techniques, develop fundamental technical skills, and acquire a basic knowledge of woodwind pedagogy and performance including embouchure formation, posture, hand position, tone production, articulation, fingerings, breathing, literature, and methodology. Course Goals This course is designed to assist future music educators in developing pedagogical skills for teaching woodwind instrumentalists. We will do this through: acquiring woodwind performance skills; gaining familiarity with repertoire, methods, texts, and materials employed in the teaching of woodwinds; developing knowledge and skills related to the proper care and storage of woodwind instruments; and, gaining a basic understanding and skills related to arranging in the context of woodwind instrumental performance. Course Topics IN Educator Content Standards (Fine Arts - Instrumental Music; Fine Arts - General Music) • 6.2 Techniques for performing on flute, clarinet, and saxophone, including modeling proper posture, hand position, fingerings and finger control, air support, embouchure, tone quality, and articulation • 6.9 Techniques for proper instrument storage. [Additionally: General maintenance and basic repair] • 6.10 Knowledge of common technical challenges encountered in playing woodwind, brass, string, and percussion instruments, and techniques for addressing those challenges. • 6.11 Knowledge of age-appropriate solo repertoire for woodwind, brass, percussion, and string instruments that are used in school band or orchestral ensembles. • 5.6 Knowledge of age-appropriate method books and repertoire for various school instrumental ensembles, including transcriptions and arrangements. • 3.1 Knowledge of instrumental transpositions, ranges, and idiomatic writing for various instruments and instrumental ensembles. Course Objectives Through a variety of in-class activities and outside assignments, the students will: • Acquire a rudimentary understanding of the pedagogy of woodwind performance, including embouchure formation, posture, hand position, tone production, fingerings, and breathing. • Understand the principles of tone production on woodwind instruments, including construction and acoustical properties. • Develop techniques for performing on woodwind instruments, including flute, clarinets, and saxophones. • Acquire knowledge and techniques for properly caring and storing woodwind instruments. • Explore and evaluate repertoire, textbook series, and materials appropriate for use in instrumental music classrooms involving woodwind students. • Prepare, teach, and evaluate music lessons to develop and refine woodwind performance skills. • Acquire skills necessary to arrange music for young woodwind instrumentalists competently.

Student Outcomes

• Pedagogy of Woodwind Performance o Demonstrate proper embouchure formation by playing a consistent tone on a selected woodwind instrument. o Exhibit correct posture while holding and playing a woodwind instrument. o Display the standard hand position for selected woodwind instruments. o Articulate and explain the fundamentals of tone production, fingerings, and breathing techniques. o Identify and explain the different parts of woodwind instruments and how they contribute to tone production. o Analyze the acoustical properties of selected woodwind instruments by discussing pitch, resonance, and timbre. • Techniques for Performing on Woodwind Instruments o Perform a scale or a short piece on the flute, clarinet, and saxophone, showcasing an understanding of the instrument's technique. o Demonstrate effective finger transition and tone control on a selected piece. o Play a musical piece with varied dynamics and articulations to demonstrate mastery of technique. • Caring and Storing Woodwind Instruments o Demonstrate the correct technique for cleaning and maintaining a woodwind instrument. o Explain the potential risks and solutions to common storage issues (e.g., humidity, temperature, potential for damage). o Exhibit proper disassembly and storage techniques for woodwind instruments after use. • Exploration and Evaluation of Repertoire and Materials o Critically review and evaluate a selection of repertoire pieces, discussing their suitability for various skill levels. • Preparation, Teaching, and Evaluation of Music Lessons o Develop and present a lesson plan aimed at improving a specific woodwind technique or skill. o Teach a mock lesson to a peer or class, showcasing effective teaching strategies for woodwind performance. o Evaluate a peer's woodwind performance, providing constructive feedback on areas of strength and needed improvement. o Reflect on feedback received from peers or instructors and implement changes in subsequent lessons or performances.