22 Ways to Use Garageband or Soundtrap in Music Education

Lesson ideas for using GarageBand or Soundtrap – part 2

In part 2 of this series, I share some intermediate and advanced lesson ideas for using GarageBand or Soundtrap with your music students

In this podcast episode I cover:

  • How to get started with using GarageBand or Soundtrap with your students
  • How to decide what your outcomes should be for the lesson
  • The Golden Rule of all music tech projects
  • Specific ideas for lessons or projects at 4 different experience levels


Did you miss part 1? Click here to listen.


Listen to the episode here (or on your favourite podcast app):

Level 3: Intermediate (4 ideas)

  1. Cover song – either replicate the original backing or create original arrangement (the “Better Than The Original” listening lesson can be found in the Midnight Music Community)
  2. Songwriting 1 – provide chord sequence that everyone works to – record backing in a chosen style – write original melody over the top
  3. Songwriting 2 – free options – collaborative
  4. Radio show – similar to storytelling – longer, more acting parts/people, music intro/outro/bed

Level 4: Advanced (7 ideas)

  1. Record found sounds and create composition with them (inside the Midnight Music Community are full instructions for the “Found Sound Challenge” lesson plan)
  2. Take short music or audio samples (like NASA sound samples) and make them into something new (“Wait That’s A Sample?” lesson can be found in the Midnight Music Community)
  3. Remix audio song stems
  4. MIDI file transformation
  5. Songwriting more in-depth, recreate sounds heard in popular songs – add effects, plugins
  6. Video game composition
  7. Film scoring – combining visuals and sound, sync, mood music

Tips: adapting projects for different student ability levels

It’s VERY easy to add options for students that are quick/savvy. They could:

  • Compose another track
  • Add a harmony part
  • Compose a melody if there isn’t already one
  • Compose a whole new section – contrasting
  • Create a custom instrument – change tone/settings
  • Student can teach the class something they’ve learnt/discovered

For students that need the task simplified:

  • Encourage them to record at a slow tempo
  • Allow the use of limited scale options
  • Use templates
  • Use ready-made components

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Midnight Music Community: special rate for MTT podcast listeners

The Midnight Music Community (MMC) is an online space for music teachers interested in learning more about music technology.  There are online courses, lesson plans and lots of other resources for Chromebooks, iPads, Macs and PCs. Professional development certificates are available for all training undertaken by MMC members and I am in the Community everyday, personally answering questions and offering advice to members.

Access the special rate for podcast listeners here.


Music technology courses for teachers

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