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How to Teach: Tone and Embouchure for Teachers of All Levels

by Shantell Hillius


As a music education major at University of Wyoming, I was very excited to attend the sessions on flute pedagogy, many held at the pedagogy committee’s booth in the exhibit hall. The first one I attended was presented by Helen Blackburn, who taught a session about tone and embouchure. She did an excellent job of keeping all of us engaged and clearly was passionate about teaching. We also received a lengthy and very informative handout. 

Blackburn emphasized the importance of repetition and redundancy with newer players. Her style of teaching is very methodical and organized. This breakdown was very beneficial for me to see; when teaching a beginner, it can get overwhelming, as there are so many ways for things to go awry! I really enjoyed getting to attend all of the sessions put on by the Pedagogy Committee, and found Blackburn’s particularly helpful.