Seminar: Empowering Music Learners Using iPads in Music Classrooms with Spiros Xydas

March 29, 2014
10am - 12:30pm  

Cost: $60 (includes banquet lunch following seminar)

Location: Princeton Room at Rider University, Lawrenceville NJ
Note: this program does not take place on the Westminster campus

Register Online

Watch video of Spiros Xydas and his students

Music teachers face the challenge of keeping music learning relevant for today's young musicians. Embracing this challenge may be the key to students’ continued interest in the arts. As technology becomes more prominent in learners' educational experiences, music educators can use these tools to empower music learners, thinkers, and creators. In this workshop, participants will have hands on experiences using the iPad with a focus on composing with GarageBand®. Together we will learn how to encourage our students to explore, share, compose, perform, and assess their own musical creations. As students create meaningful musical experiences they develop a sense of agency. These experiences, along with other practical ways of incorporating the iPad will help motivate, inspire, and develop young musicians within a student-centered environment. Additional apps, hardware, accessories, and "tricks" for using an iPad in any music classroom will be shared with specific relevance towards performance-based ensembles. If your school is 1:1, has an iPad cart, or owns just one iPad for the entire building, this workshop will provide the tools needed for you to enhance student learning and foster musical understanding. Participants are encouraged to bring their iPad with the downloaded Garageband app.

Read the article "Yes, There Really is an App for That" in the periodical Teaching Music

SpirosInstructor Spiros Xydas currently teaches at Baker Middle School, an International Baccalaureate World School in Troy, Michigan where he instructs three concert bands, a jazz ensemble, and a percussion ensemble using a constructivist, student-centered approach. Mr. Xydas also teaches instrumental technique courses at Oakland University while actively completing his PhD in Music Education.  His research is focused on students creating, teaching, and performing their own compositions as an integrated part their performance-ensemble experience. Mr. Xydas received a BA in Music from the University of California, Santa Barbara, teaching certification from Sonoma State University, and a MM in Music Education from Northwestern University.

Mr. Xydas has presented at workshops and conferences in Michigan, California, Iceland, and Greece. His professional presentation topics have included instrumental music techniques, incorporating technology and composition in the performance-based classroom and creating a student-centered band ensemble. In 2007, Mr. Xydas served as a guest conductor of the International Honor Band in Iceland. His recent presentation titled "Composing and Sharing as an Integral Part of a Instrumental Music Curriculum" was given at the International Society for Music Education conference in Thessaloniki, Greece in the summer of 2012.


Please contact the Westminster Office of Continuing Education at 609-924-7416 or email


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