Professional Development


Summer '24 First Steps in Music: FAME Certification Course 
with Betsy Greene  

July 8-12 • In person
Champlain Elementary School in Burlington, VT

3 Graduate Credits or 45 hours of PD/Workshop Credit
3 Graduate Credits  - $1,780
Workshop credit only - $1,350

Course Description: 
First Steps in Music™ is a research-based, curricular framework combining the development of singing and movement skills in order to maximize musical aptitude in young children, typically grades PreK-2. The eight-part “workout” is designed to encourage musical independence and creativity through joyful activities and experiences shared with others while developing the prerequisite skills needed for music literacy: singing in tune, keeping a steady beat, and developing sensitivity to the expressive elements of music.
First Steps is a developmentally appropriate music education framework for instruction with techniques that provide pathways to meeting students where they are in their musical development, no matter the age or ability.Participants who successfully complete this course will receive an official certificate of completion from the Feierabend Association for Music Education.    

The objectives of the class are as follows:

To understand the philosophy, research, and pedagogy as presented in First Steps in MusicTM  .

To develop teaching skills necessary to present lessons with materials and music activities appropriate to the developmental abilities of children in grades N-2 using the First Steps in MusicTM curriculum.  

To introduce effective psychological principles, techniques, and materials which will aid
in the discovery and maximization of the innate music potential of children in preschool
and the early elementary grades.

To develop the ability to design curriculum appropriate for grades N-2, as well as for
infant and toddler.  



Summer Institute: Popular Music Edition
with Brian Boyes & Stefanie Weigand

  • Approaches to Popular Music (year 1)  

  • Songwriting & PME Intensive (year 2)

July 15-19 • In person
Crossett Brook Middle School in Duxbury, VT

Offered as a Year 1 or Year 2* leveled course (see above). 
3 Graduate Credits  - $1,850
Workshop credit only (40 hours) - $1,500


Course Description:
More than ever students need opportunities to experience music that reflects their world.  In this course we will explore approaches to popular music education that will help teachers to expand their current practice while amplifying equity and access to the performing arts in their schools.

These courses are designed to support Vermont K-12 music educators who are eager to build their PME toolkit + expand the offerings for students in their schools. In this hands-on, action-based course participants will learn approaches to:

Building and coaching a popular music ensemble


Popular Music Pedagogy // Guitar, Bass, Drums, Vocals, Latin Percussion, Electronic Music

Arranging for horns + strings

Creating vocal harmony lines or ‘stacks’

Live sound engineering

Building and fostering a culture of collaboration, curiosity and creativity

Participants will take on the role of their students learning how to start a modern band, arrange covers and collaborate on songwriting. By the end of the week our band(s) will have skills on a new instrument and be able to perform in an authentic, small group setting.   
Graduate participants will also have mentor-supported individual work time at the end of each day to develop and refine their popular music curriculum for use next school year.

*All year 2 students MUST have participated in the level 1 course last year (July, 2023).



ONLINE courses (1 credit each)

  • Creativity in Soundtrap

  • Creative Foundations in Noteflight

 These remote courses can be taken individually or concurrently

Online Course Meeting:  Monday, July 8
Creativity in Soundtrap: 6-7:30pm Eastern
Creative Foundations in Noteflight: 7:30-9pm Eastern

Asynchronous Coursework continues through August 9th, 2024

1 Graduate Credit  - $595
Workshop credit only (15 hours) - $450

Course Descriptions:

In these hands-on courses we will learn a variety of skills within the Noteflight and Soundtrap platforms that allow our students to think outside the box and see themselves not only as performers but also as producers, composers, and storytellers. Participants will experience each lesson as both the student and teacher as they learn skills, record, and edit their work before writing lesson plans suited to their own individual teaching situation.

No prior experience with these platforms required before taking these courses. 
Attendance at online meeting required. All other work occurs asynchronously through our LMS, Music First. 

Please read full syllabus for more details:
Creativity in Soundtrap
Creative Foundations in Noteflight

Graduate credits are offered through VTSU:Castleton under a professional development contract with Music-COMP. All fees are paid directly to Music-COMP.




For just a few dollars per month, you can help ensure students will be writing music with Music-COMP for years to come. With your support, students throughout Vermont will continue to see their music come to life!