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JMU Kodály Teacher Training

July 7-19, 2024

Click here to register

James Madison University is proud to offer Kodály Teacher Training here on our campus. For the summer of 2024, we will be offering Level I. It is endorsed by the Organization of American Kodály Educators and is held during the summer, when those actively teaching in the field can join us. 

Why take a Kodály course?

music note inside of a circle

Enhance musicianship 

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Develop long-range planning skills 

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Learn new songs, games, techniques, & ideas

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Develop efficient, engaging, & intentional lessons

Why JMU Kodály?
  1. Opportunity to work with JMU Music Education faculty.
  2. Our students have the opportunity to interact with children and youth during their levels courses, and to observe nationally-recognized experienced veteran teachers and conductors.
  3. Our setting is beautiful, pastoral, and quiet, and our facilities are excellent. 
  4. Our curriculum combines a strong basis in Kodály tradition and time-tested methodology with research-based innovation and openness to the most effective new techniques and tools, including those found in other approaches. 
Fees, Housing, & Meals


Workshop Fee: $950*

Participants will study pedagogy, musical materials, choral conducting, and musicianship/solfege. The JMU course is endorsed by the Organization of American Kodály Educators. 

*Undergraduates and first year teachers will receive $100 off their workshop fee.


Housing and meals are additional. Housing is available in air-conditioned Apartments on Grace. Click here for a virtual tour of the Apartments on Grace.

The Apartments on Grace weekly rate is $150.00 per person (in addition to the workshop fee). Participants may choose to stay on campus and purchase a meal plan. For optional linen service, a per person charge of $10.00/stay will include two sheets, one pillow case, two towels, one washcloth, and one thin blanket. Pillows may be rented for $2.00 a piece and additional blankets also for $2.00. 


Meals are available in JMU dining facilities. Meals can be purchased à la carte:

  • Breakfast: $9.84
  • Lunch: $12.27
  • Dinner: $12.63
  • Total: $34.74 + 12.3% tax. Tax includes meals and state sales tax.

To secure housing & meals, please contact JMU Conference Services at:

(540) 568-3606

Kris Hensley

Coursework & Credit

What will I learn and do during my two weeks at JMU?

Each day will run approximately from 8:00am to 5:30pm. Expect several hours of homework each evening. (A Kodály course is a lot of work, but we promise it will be well worth it!) 


Course participants will have 2 hours each day of personal musicianship training, using solfege, rhythm syllables, and other tools. Some students come in never having learned solfege before, so if you haven't read in solfege or if you're shaky, don't worry! Our instructors start at the beginning.

If you're already an excellent sight-reader and very experienced in solfege, you will still be challenged in Solfege I. You will be asked to take your skills to new and deeper levels. Also, you will find the methods and activities at this level very valuable in terms of teaching solfege to your own students.


  • Level I Solfege is based primarily, but not completely, on pentatonic music.
  • Level II Solfege deals with diatonic music and begins work on modes.
  • Level III Solfege deals with diatonic, modal, and chromatic music.


You will have 2 hours each day of instruction in Kodály-inspired Pedagogy.

  • Level I focuses on early-childhood through 2nd grade pedagogy.
  • Level II focuses on 3rd and 4th grade pedagogy.
  • Level III focuses on 5th grade through middle school pedagogy.

If you are a secondary level teacher, JMU instructors will help you to adapt beginning-, intermediate-, and advanced-level pedagogy and materials to the grade levels you teach. Many of our course participants have been choral conductors and even band and orchestra directors, and have found the instruction to be extremely valuable.

Pedagogy instruction includes:

  • philosophy and history of the Kodály approach
  • singing
  • moving (games, dances, free and creative movement)
  • reading and notating music
  • playing instruments
  • audiating
  • improvising and composing
  • lesson planning
  • long-range planning
  • differentiating
  • developing artistry

Level I students may have the opportunity to observe and interact with children.

Materials/Folksong Research

You will have 90 minutes of Materials instruction each day. During Materials you will learn about choosing excellent quality, appealing songs and other materials for your students, authentic and responsible collection of song material, and analyzing songs so that they become more useful as teaching materials. You will also begin the process of organizing your collected song material in a retrieval system based on the musical concepts you teach.

You will be amazed at the time this will save you in lesson planning and how much more effective you can become as a teacher when your materials are well organized!

As you can probably guess, Pedagogy and Materials courses are closely related.

Other experiences and topics in Materials:

  • folk dancing
  • folk instruments
  • multi-cultural music


You will have 70 minutes of Conducting each day. This Conducting course is designed to build your conducting skills from your current skill level, wherever that is. Each year our course includes everyone from novice to expert conductors. The atmosphere in class is positive, supportive, and collegial.


You will have 70 minutes of Ensemble each day. This is primarily a choral experience, but often includes recorder and other instruments, depending on the talents of the year's participants. The goals of Ensemble are to share a satisfying musical experience, to learn new repertoire, and to use your developing solfege skills.


For the 2024 summer, the JMU Kodály Training will only offer training through a workshop. 

  • Kodály Level I: $950
  • JMU will provide a letter documenting contact hours (75 for a Kodály Level workshop) for possible recertification to participants who attend all sessions. 
Contact for JMU Kodály Teacher Training

For further information, please contact:

Dr. Rachel Grimsby
School of Music, MSC 7301
James Madison University
Harrisonburg, VA 22807

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