Nelson Higher Education

Higher Education

Teaching Kids to Sing, 2nd Edition

  • Kenneth H. Phillips
  • ISBN-10: 1133958508
  • ISBN-13: 9781133958505
  • 432 Pages | Paperback
  • Previous Editions: 1996
  • COPYRIGHT: 2014 Published
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About the Product

A foundational text in music education, TEACHING KIDS TO SING, 2e delivers a developmental program of exercises and skills to help all students achieve confident, accurate, and expressive singing. Founded on the principle that singing is a "learned" skill and grounded in the latest physiological research, this popular text provides a groundbreaking, step-by-step methodology for energizing the body, breath, ear, voice, and song. Thoroughly revised and updated, the new Second Edition includes a revision of the basic methodology, updated research on young singers, a separate new section on vocal physiology, contemporary music selections, and much more.


  • Popular with instructors and students alike, TEACHING KIDS TO SING is renowned for its proven methodology.

  • Dr. Phillips is an award-winning researcher and teacher. Music teachers throughout the world use his method of systematic voice instruction to teach children and adolescents to sing with accuracy and confidence.

About the Author

Kenneth H. Phillips

Kenneth H. Phillips, Professor Emeritus at The University of Iowa, is a graduate of Westminster College (BM), West Virginia University (MM), and Kent State University (Ph.D.). An award-winning researcher and teacher, Dr. Phillips is the author of four books--TEACHING KIDS TO SING (Cengage), BASIC TECHNIQUES OF CONDUCTING (Oxford University Press), DIRECTING THE CHORAL MUSIC PROGRAM (OUP), and EXPLORING RESEARCH IN MUSIC EDUCATION AND MUSIC THERAPY (OUP)--as well as more than 100 reviews, chapters, and professional journal articles. Professor Phillips has been honored with three outstanding teaching awards from The University of Iowa and is recognized by the National Association for Music Education as one of the nation's most accomplished music educators. A recipient of the Robert M. McCowen Memorial Award for Outstanding Contribution to Choral Music, he holds the Distinguished Music Alumni Award from Kent State University and serves as an honorary board member of the Lowell Mason Foundation. Dr. Phillips has presented workshops throughout the United States and in Australia, Canada, China, and New Zealand.

Table of Contents

1. Vocal Pedagogy for Young Singers.
Philosophical and Historical Perspectives. A Psychomotor Process. Study and Discussion Questions. References. Bibliography of Child Vocal Research Related to the Methodology.
2. The Psychomotor Process.
Aural Acuity. Pitch Discrimination. Motor Coordination. Inaccurate Singing. Study and Discussion Questions. References.
3. Research on the Young Singer.
The Elementary School Singer. The Secondary School Singer. Study and Discussion Questions. References.
4. The Child Singer.
Characteristics of Vocal Development. Vocal Parameters. Teaching a Song. Study and Discussion Questions. References.
5. The Adolescent Singer.
The Nature of Adolescents. Adolescent Female Voice. Adolescent Male Voice. Study and Discussion Questions. References.
6. Breathing and Laryngeal Mechanics.
The Breath. Breathing Physiology. The Voice. Laryngeal Physiology. Study and Discussion Questions. References.
7. Resonator and Articulator Mechanics.
Resonant Tone Production. Resonator Physiology. Developing Resonance. Articulator Physiology. Diction for Singing. Study and Discussion Questions. References.
8. The Healthy Voice.
Knowing Your Voice. Worksheet: Knowing Your Voice. Study and Discussion Questions. References.
9. The Method: An Overview.
A Rationale for Teaching Kids to Sing. The Revised Curriculum. Singing Assessment. Study and Discussion Questions.
10. Level I Exercises: 1-40.
Part 1: Energize the Body. Part 2: Energize the Breath. Part 3: Energize the Ear. Part 4: Energize the Voice. Part 5: Energize the Song. Study and Discussion Questions.
11. Level II Exercises: 41-80.
Part 1: Energize the Body. Part 2: Energize the Breath. Part 3: Energize the Ear. Part 4: Energize the Voice. Part 5: Energize the Song. Study and Discussion Questions.
12: Singing Lessons.
Summary Outline: Level I. Sample Singing Lessons: Level I. Exercise Record: Level I. Summary Outline: Level II. Sample Singing Lessons: Level II. Exercise Record: Level II.
Appendix A: Recommended Resources for Child and Adolescent Singing.
Appendix B: Lists of Recommended Choral Repertory. Easy Literature for Elementary Choirs and General Music Classes. Basic Literature for Jr. High/Middle School Choirs. Basic Literature for High School Choirs.

New to this edition

  • Combining proven methodology with contemporary selections, the thoroughly revised and updated TEACHING KIDS TO SING, 2e features all new pictures of children performing exercises, 30 new musical examples, six revised musical examples, and revised exercise records for Levels I and II.
  • Chapter 1 "Vocal Pedagogy for Young Singers" offers new recommendations from the American Academy of Teachers of Singing on child vocal pedagogy as well as new discussions of why kids should learn to sing and the growth of the children's choir movement in the late 20th century. It also compares original and revised vocal methodology and new bibliographical material on vocal methods.
  • Chapter 2 "The Psychomotor Process" presents new material on "The Great American Singing Challenge", "Simple Tone" as a child vocal model, audiation, aural acuity, and pitch discrimination.
  • An all-new Chapter 3 "Research on the Young Singer" summarizes well over 100 studies involving elementary and secondary singers.
  • Chapter 4 "The Child Singer" features revised discussion of Welch's "Vocal Pitch-Matching Development" model along with new discussions of popular music and vocal health as well as the immersion and whole-part-whole approaches to teaching a song.
  • Chapter 5 presents new discussion of the adolescent singer as distinct from the child singer, as well as the physiological and psychological components of adolescence. It also includes updated research on female and male voice change as well as the ranges and registers for adolescent male repertoire.
  • Included in Chapter 6, expanded discussion of breathing and laryngeal physiology is now separate from the methodology chapters. Discussion of resonator and articulator physiology has also been expanded and is included in its own Chapter 7.
  • An all-new Chapter 9 "The Method: An Overview" provides an overview of the revised TEACHING KIDS TO SING methodology.
  • An all-new Chapter 10 includes revised versions of the Level I (beginner) exercises 1–40, while the all-new Chapter 11 focuses on Level II exercises. Both chapters offer sections devoted to energizing the body, breath, ear, and song.
  • Chapter 12 "Singing Lessons" features new outlines of Levels I and II of the methodology with page references as well as new sample singing lessons.
  • The Appendixes offer new resources for child and adolescent singing and expanded lists of recommended choral repertory, including easy and medium selections.