Course Detail: SOI1 - SIUE Summer Orff Institute: AOSA Teacher Education Course, Levels 1 and 2

Join our AOSA approved Levels 1 and 2 Teacher Training Courses at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville hosted by the SIUE Department of Music!  Experienced, enthusiastic, and knowledgeable Orff specialists teach in our comprehensive program.   
Level 1 is largely experiential-a time in which the class as an ensemble comes together exploring, developing skills, creating, and analyzing music and movement activities primarily for the K-8 music teacher, although objectives, scaffolding, and work are appropriate for secondary classrooms and beyond!  It is approached through hands-on experiences, lively discussions, and solid musical models which help develop both skills and concepts to provide tools to create your own active music-making curriculum.  

Level 2 is a time for expanded learning after using and developing elemental musical and movement materials following Level 1.  It is also a time when many questions regarding theory and pedagogy that arose during the school year may be answered, and class discussions concerning application are approached on a more knowledgeable and practical level. Hands on activities related to various scales and modes and more complex meters will be used.  

Instructors: Level 1: Sandy Lantz (Basic), Gretchen Wahlberg (Basic and Movement), and Vivian Murray Caputo (Recorder)
Level 2: Vivian Murray Caputo (Basic), Sandy Lantz (Recorder), and Gretchen Wahlberg (Movement)

Sandy Lantz and Gretchen Wahlberg are national board certified teachers who have taught elementary music in Florida for over 38 years. For the past 20 years, they have taught Orff-Schulwerk Level I teacher training courses sponsored by the Central Florida Orff Chapter, Florida Gulf Coast University, Florida International University, Stetson University, and the University of Arkansas. They have co-taught workshop sessions at National Orff Schulwerk conferences, as well as numerous state music conferences throughout the US, including at the 2022 Illinois Music Educators Conference. Together they have written the books, Drum It Up, Creative Bits with Children's Lit, Strum It Up, and S'More Bits with Children's Lit. Their most recent publication from Beatin' Path Publications is MIXING IT UP! (2022), a book of lesson plans inspired by even more popular children's books.

Vivian Murray Caputo has taught in public and private schools for many years.  She has presented workshops for AOSA chapters and for NAfME and AOSA National Conferences and is an instructor for Levels II, and III Orff Schulwerk Teacher Education. She served on the AOSA National Board of Trustees as Region V Representative and as Co-Chair of the 2005 AOSA National Conference in Birmingham.  She was Co-Chair of the International Orff Symposium in Rochester, NY, in 2000.  She has been an instructor for the International Association for Jazz Education Teacher Training Institutes and she sings with various jazz ensembles.  She has performed and recorded with Phil Woods and the Gregory Caputo Big Band.  She is the author of Earth Dance, A Celebration of Canons, published by Beatin' Path Publications. She continues to explore and delight in the many possibilities offered by Orff Schulwerk.

Cost: $720.00 total; $150.00 down payment due at registration ($570.00 remainder due by June 3rd)
**Textbooks will be required to be purchased at an additional cost to be determined closer to the conference date.

Registration deadline: June 3, 2024 by 11:59 PM.  

Housing: A institute hotel block will be available at an area hotel. More information coming soon.

Cancellation policy: Registration fees will only be refunded in circumstances related to low registration, possible global health crisis, regional natural emergency, or an instructor emergency.  Otherwise, registration fees are non-refundable.  

Attendance policy: Prompt, daily attendance is required.  Please do not schedule appointments or other commitments during this time-successful completion is based on required contact hours.  As an ensemble experience, your fellow participants depend on you.  

What is Orff Schulwerk?

The Orff-Schulwerk educational philosophy is dedicated to the creative music and movement approach developed by German composer Carl Orff (1895-1982) and his student Gunild Keetman (1904-1990). The main facets of this approach are building musicianship through singing, playing instruments, speech, and movement. Active music making is the core of this philosophy, supporting both the conceptual and affective development of children. The Orff-Schulwerk approach is universally respected and utilized around the globe in varying capacities in general music classes and can be more broadly utilized in secondary music classrooms as well. 

Levels Courses and How to Earn Your Certification in Orff Schulwerk

Orff Schulwerk Certification offers the opportunity for professional growth through a comprehensive program in one of the leading philosophies of active music education including musical and movement skills, theory and pedagogy for grades K-8.  Certification in Orff Schulwerk is widely recognized as a significant professional step in both the public and private school sector as Orff Schulwerk often forms the foundation of a music curriculum.  Learning to create original teaching materials that have meaning for your students and developing supportive connections with colleagues and instructors are only two of the important benefits of participation in the program.  The courses also help prepare teachers and therapists for the challenge of developing music programs adapted to the needs of their students.  Levels 1 and 2 are offered Summer 2024 with subsequent levels offered in the following summers.  Certification is awarded upon successful completion of Level III.  

AOSA regulations indicate that you can only sign up for one course per summer and the levels are to be taken in sequence.  These courses are also eligible for teacher recertification and professional development hours.  Your participation in Orff courses can also count for credit towards the Masters of Music Education degree at SIUE.  You may discuss this information further with Program Coordinator Dr. Alicia Vorel (  

Available Sessions