We came to play instruments: Teaching for engagement in classroom music

Emily Wilson, PhD

This ethnographic research investigated characteristics and conditions of teaching for engagement in classroom music. The teachers drew on approaches from out-of-school contexts, incorporating the learning processes of popular musicians. Findings draw on participant-observation of music lessons involving two music teachers and four classes of children aged ten to sixteen years. The research has identified that the connections between student engagement and classroom music teaching are complex, interconnected, and interdependent in a way not anticipated in the music education research literature.


  • Associate Professor Neryl Jeanneret
  • Dr Robert Brown