Okay, confession time: I am a HUGE book nerd. When I free time in college, I would spend some of it devouring the relatively small section of music education books. I’ve read some good books and some not so good books. These are my top books for band directors.

The Joy of Inspired Teaching by Tim Lautezenheiser

Tim Lautenzenheiser is my hero. When I was in high school I first met him and he changed my life and the way I lead. Just from one weekend of leadership camp! His book has inspired me all over again as an educator.

The book has 3 parts – Philosophy in Music Education, Achieving Excellence in Teaching Music, and Student Leadership. Each part of the book has wonderful little nuggets of advice and information that you can apply right away to your teaching. Even though this book came out over 20 years ago, so much of it is still relevant to teaching!

Marching Band: A Field Guide by Tim Hinton

Tim Hinton is a pretty big deal in the marching band world. In addition to writing for shows, he is the host of the podcast, Marching Band Round Table, which I like to listen to in the car sometimes. He has also written this awesome book!

I really like this book because it is concise with lots of good information. It’s a relatively short read at 70 pages but there’s no fluff or BS. He touches on a little bit of everything from show design and looking professional to rehearsal techniques and advice specifically for small bands. There are so many practical tips you can implement right away that will make a big difference in your program, on and off the field.

Classroom Management in the Music Room by David Newell

This book is probably the best classroom management book I’ve read. Classroom management is different in the band room than other places. I like that there are band room specific tips and tricks.

The nice thing is, you don’t have to wait to implement these techniques, you can do so during the year after a long weekend or school break. If you aren’t ready to purchase the full book(which I do highly recommend doing), you can check out these notes that have been posted from a clinic from a clinic.


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