Established by outstanding music educator and music literacy expert Deborah Smith, DS Music provides support and resources for teaching musicianship and aural training in the secondary school.
Our flagship series Musicianship & Aural Training for the Secondary School is a COMPETE CLASSROOM MUSIC PROGRAM comprising a comprehensive set of resources for Years 7 to 12.
The series covers 3 levels of learning for the secondary school:
Level 1 for lower secondary students (Years 7 & 8) and also suitable for upper primary school students.
Level 2 for middle secondary students (Years 9 & 10)
Level 3 for upper secondary students (Years 11 & 12/VCE)
These amazing books and accompanying resources can be used in any classroom in any state of Australia (or internationally) and can easily be adapted to suit all class types and abilities. They are easy to use and have everything (LITERALLY EVERYTHING - teaching videos, practice videos, additional information sheets, additional worksheets, MP3 files, lesson plans etc etc etc) you need to teach a great music literacy based curriculum, regardless of your personal music training background.
- Student workbooks with CD and/or digital resources for Levels 1-3
- 100s of practical activities and written tasks for developing listening skills, aural training and musicianship
- Beat, rhythm, pitch, metre, Solfa, time names, intervals, notation, transposition, harmony, form, scales, modes, articulation, keys, melody, chords, chord progressions, chord charts
- Listening, responding and analysing tasks
- Online activities, mp3 files and access to videos
- Worksheets, melodic and rhythmic transcription, games, puzzles
- Continuous, varied and interesting revision activities to make sure that no student is left behind
- FREE Introductory 10 Week Solfa Online Course
- Teacher books with CDs/digital resources, clear and concise instructions for use, terminology, teaching tips and suggested additional resources e.g. song books
- All planning in the form of structured lesson plans, theory worksheets, curriculum and assessment documents that sequentially build on skills and knowledge taught in previous lessons
- Access to 100s of digital resources including aural training exercises, assignments, tests and much more.
- A video for teaching EVERY concept is offered for Levels 1 & 3 and coming soon to Level 2;
- Use of technology including IWB/Sibelius activities to help you bring technology into the classroom in a meaningful way.
- Free PDF version for use on IWB, laptop, iPad, tablet computers
B Mus (Distinction); Grad Dip Teach; A Mus A (Clar); ATCL (Pno)
- Deborah Smith has forged a vital role in the advancement of the Kodály method in Secondary Schools throughout Victoria. In addition to her extensive experience as a leading music educator, lecturer and author, she has been a key contributor to the development of the Kodály Secondary Teacher Training Courses in Victoria, and continues to be a knowledgeable and dedicated lecturer for KMEIA Vic. As a member of KMEIA Vic., Deborah provides invaluable advice and guidance in Secondary music education. She has been editor of the Victorian Branch newsletter since 2008, sourcing and often contributing new and informative articles.
Deborah completed a Bachelor of Music Performance degree with distinction at Queensland Conservatorium of Music, where she studied clarinet with Barbara Lockwood and Floyd Williams, and piano with Charles Glenn. Upon discovering a passion for teaching others about music, she went on to study music education, in particular the Kodály method. Deborah studied with numerous Kodály experts including Judith Johnson, Anne Comiskey, Ed Bolkovac, Merrill Debski, Sayuri Kishi-Debski and Katalin Forrai. She has a Graduate Diploma of Teaching in Primary and Secondary Classroom Music and is a graduate of the Holy Names Summer Institute (California).
Deborah commenced her teaching career at the renowned Kodály School at Clayfield College in QLD, where she worked alongside inspirational teachers such as Judith Johnson, Gwen Burguez and James Cuskelly. In 1994, she was appointed Head of Junior School Music at Scotch College in Melbourne. In 1996, following her passion for teaching Secondary School aged students, Deborah joined Lowther Hall Anglican Grammar School as Director of Music where she developed the existing Junior School Kodály program into a whole school program from Prep to Year 12. Following this, a position as Director of Music at Ivanhoe Girls' Grammar School enabled her to continue this work, implementing a highly successful, fully aural-based program for students across the whole school.
In 2001, Deborah launched her own company, Deborah Smith Music, with a view to helping as many music students and teachers as possible. After being asked by numerous Victorian music teachers to help them find suitable Kodály-based teaching resources, she wrote the Musicianship & Aural Training for the Secondary School textbooks for VCE music (Year 11 and 12). The success of these early books led to Deborah creating a full series of textbooks, CDs and online resources for musicianship and aural training in the Secondary School. Deborah also has the honour of publishing a series of analysis texts written by her colleague Jenny Gillan. Since its early days, DS Music has expanded and now boasts sales of 10,000 books every year.
Deborah is in constant demand as a lecturer and mentor, and is invited to give numerous conference presentations, lectures, workshops and aural training sessions to music students, teachers and student-teachers. This work enables Deborah to provide critical support for students and their teachers. Her informative, enthusiastic and entertaining style is always well received.
Through the DS Music website, Deborah offers dedicated support to teachers and students, as well as an extensive range of free resources and online courses. Students and teachers also benefit from her two Facebook pages: VCE Music Support and Classroom Music Teacher Support, and her music educator’s blog.
In 2014, Deborah was inducted into the inaugural Association of Music Educators (aMuse) Music Education Hall of Fame. This Hall of Fame was created to commemorate the influence made on the Victorian education landscape by music educators.
“Deb’s role in the life of KMEIA Victoria is unmatched and we are honoured to have her as a member”. Susan Searle, KMEIA National Conference, 2016
Deborah considers receiving the Honorary Life Membership from KMEIA at the 2016 National Conference her greatest honour of all.
Deborah's Music Education Philosophy:
- Music belongs to all;
- Music is essential to the curriculum;
- Music teachers must be highly competent and well trained and most of all love music;
- Music learning should be active and fun;
- Music should be taught through singing (available to all);
- Music should be taught as a language;
- True music literacy is the ability to see what you hear and hear what you see;
- In order to truly understand the elements of music one must be able to read and speak the language of music fluently;
- Only the best music should be used. (Not just classical but the best);
- Music should be taught sequentially i.e. in very small steps so students can "discover" what they are learning. This is done in a child orientated order;
- Teach for success;
- Structure does not equal rigidity! “..an instructor will function in a fog of his own making until he knows what he wants his students to be able to do at the end of the instruction” (Mager 1962);
- The songs and games will work – if you believe they will;
- Produce students to whom music is not a living but a way of life.