Compose Yourself – Facilitating Student Composition With an Emphasis on 21st Century Skills: There is no better way to get children thinking critically, collaboratively, and creatively than through music composition using the Orff-Schulwerk process. Using a piece from Volume I as a jumping off point, we will explore ways to facilitate composition and accept Orff’s call to “Let the children be their own composers!”
Heather Klossner, Assistant Professor of Music Education at the University of Memphis, teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in music education and supervises teacher candidates. She also oversees UofM’s Master of Music in Orff Schulwerk program and coordinates the Summer Orff Institute Teacher Education Course. Prior to joining the faculty at U of M, Klossner was a graduate teaching assistant in music education at the Eastman School of Music, where she taught music education graduate and undergraduate courses and supervised student teachers. In April, 2016, she was awarded Eastman’s prestigious Donald J. Shetler Prize for Excellence in Music Education.
Prior to her doctoral studies, Klossner taught K–5 general music for twenty-nine years in Texas, working in suburban and urban areas. Additionally, she was an associate director for the Children’s Chorus of San Antonio. She earned a Bachelor of Music Education from Texas Lutheran University and a Master of Music from Texas State University.
Klossner’s primary research interests are culturally relevant pedagogy, Orff Schulwerk, and music education in low-income settings. Her dissertation, “A Wildflower Takes Root in Memphis: the Adaptation of Orff Schulwerk to the Memphis, Tennessee School Curriculum,” is an historical case study that traces the evolution of a curricular approach as it is introduced, adapted and implemented to an educational community by people of that time and place.