Super Round-Up: iPads in Music Education

Super Round-Up: iPads in Music Education

Back in April, I was lucky enough to get my first iPad. I’ve had an iPhone for a couple of years now, but the iPad – with its large screen – really opens up possibilities for use in the classroom.

I soon discovered there are lots of music apps (of varying quality) and I’m still testing many out to create my list of favourites.  I lean towards the apps that are more than novelty value: ones that will have longevity, that can be incorporated into existing learning and performance activities.

In the meantime, I’ve been keeping up with a raft of iPad/iPhone blog posts written by music educators around the world as well as exploring websites that focus on the use of iPads in general education.  I thought I’d share some of the best ones here:

Joanna’s Music Blog

Joanna Sisk-Purvis first wrote about her experience with her iPad back in 2010 in her post titled Music Education and My iPad. She has since gone on to write a further 8 posts – her iPad App Mega List – which offer an thorough run-down on the music and non-music apps she uses:

Part 1: Productivity Apps

Part 2: General Apps for Teaching

Part 3: General Music Apps

Part 4: Music Production Apps

Part 5: Musical Instrument Apps

Part 6: Non-Music Specific Educational Apps

Part 7: Non-Music Creative Apps, Social Media and Readers

Part 8: Miscellaneous Apps

James Frankel, Soundtree

Soon after the first iPad was released, James Frankel (Managing Director of Soundtree) imagined a music education future with iPad/tablet devices in his article iPads in the Music Classroom.  More recently, he published a list of apps suitable for music education, sorted by category:

Making Music With iPads, iPhones and iPod Touches

Wright-Stuff Music

My friend Samuel Wright – an educator based in New South Wales – is very active on his own blog and has written a series of posts about iPads in music education, including these ones:

iPad Apps for Orff Lessons

iPads as Wireless MIDI Controllers

iPad and Classroom Aspirations

iPad Music Applications

Victorian Government – iPads For Learning

The Victorian Education Department is currently running an iPads in schools trial with selected schools in Victoria, Australia.  They have a useful website that offers tips for iPad use in the classroom.  The site includes a list of educational apps (paid and free) and two online digital books (which are also downloadable):

Classroom Ideas for Learning With The iPad

21 Steps for iPad 1-1 Success

iPad Music Ed

Paul Shimmons has a blog titled iPad and Technology in Music Education and posts frequently about apps and tips for using the iPad.  His collection of articles about apps for the iPad can be found here.  I also encourage you to explore the other articles on his website.

Things To Come

In March 2011, Brandt Schneider wrote about his Top Thirteen Free iPad Apps for the Music Class on his Things to Come blog.  More recently he has written about the most frequently-used apps during his first year of iPad use in music education in the article iPad Apps for the Music Class.

iPad Music Education Project

Although it doesn’t seem to be have updated for some time, the iPad in Music Education Project site is still a useful resource for music educators wanting to explore the use of iPads in the classroom.

Dr Joe Pisano is a music educator who has decided to delve into the world of app development with his involvement in the creation of the APS Music Master Pro – an all-in-one tool for musicians.  The app is a tuner, pitch pipe, circle of 5ths, recorder, notepad, calendar, fingering chart resource, music dictionary and more rolled into one app.  You can watch an overview video for the app here.

[Update: you can also visit the A.P.S. MusicMaster Pro website for more info]

Technology in Music Education

On Christopher Russell’s Technology in Music Education blog has featured a Comparison of 5 iPad Sheet Music Readers and an interesting iPads FAQ section as well as a number of other iPad and iPhone/iTouch-related articles.

And as for my own favourite apps? Well, you’ll have to wait for those.

Perhaps you have some of your own favourite iPad or iPhone apps you’d like to share?  Post a comment below – I’d love to know which ones you’re using and how you’re integrating them into your teaching.

Step-by-step iPad projects: ebook coming soon!

iPad Music Project Ideas For Your Students!

iPad Projects for the Music Classroom includes 22 step-by-step projects you can use straight away with your music students. Take the guesswork out of choosing apps and discover how you can use iPads in an engaging and meaningful way.

Click on the image below for more information.

iPad Music Education Ebook

By |2018-09-08T07:02:27+00:00July 19th, 2011|iPads|11 Comments

About the Author:

I love to simplify technology for music teachers. I help teachers from all around the world through the Midnight Music Community - an online professional development community where teachers can take online courses, ask questions and receive personalised help for the music tech goals.


  1. J. Pisano July 19, 2011 at 3:40 am - Reply

    Thanks for writing about our app A.P.S. MusicMaster Pro! People can find out more information about it directly here:

    • Katie July 19, 2011 at 3:47 am - Reply

      Thanks Joe! I’ll update the post and include the link directly there.

  2. Antony Hubmayer July 19, 2011 at 6:45 am - Reply

    Great compilation Katie, I look forward to your app list.

    • Katie July 19, 2011 at 6:52 am - Reply

      Thanks Antony!

  3. Richard July 20, 2011 at 12:26 pm - Reply

    Hi Katie
    You may be interested to learn that NOTION Music now have two iPad Apps – and one is FREE! Yay!! They are called PROGRESSION and are aimed at the guitarist with TAB, great sounds, editing and loads more. The version that’s not free (but at £2.99 it might as well be!) you can also bring in Ultimate Tab and Guitar Pro tracks. Guitar teachers will also find it indispensable… Check out for more info… Let me know what you think..

  4. Neryl Jeanneret July 22, 2011 at 10:37 pm - Reply

    Thanks for this, Katie. I’ve posted the link on the Music Education At Melbourne FB page.

  5. Eyal August 11, 2011 at 6:34 am - Reply

    Hi, interesting stuff, thanks. Another cool site that may be of interest to you is (i know since I work there, ha-ha…). The application for ipad/ipod is soon to be release; in the meanwhile they have a PC/Mac application – computer games that are controlled by real instruments (no midi, no cable connections…). The games are designed so kids play the games but actually are practicing and learning to play the instrument along the way. I know that this tool is of great interest to teachers and homeschooling. (oh, and most of it is free!)

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  7. Dave September 8, 2011 at 10:16 am - Reply

    Eyal, thanks for the advice. Got the joytunes game for my kids and they loved it! Do you know when they are going to release the ipad version?

  8. Lynette February 4, 2015 at 3:14 pm - Reply

    What is the very best way to project the sheet music from the iPad screen, up for a classroom to see?

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