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Using music technology to support creativity


Marker Helsinki, Suomi
Opportunities created by modern technology can be a natural part of learning and teaching music. In this innovation students compose, write lyrics for, and produce their own song from start to finish. Neither teachers nor students need any previous knowledge of music.

What is it all about?

“During the self-critical phase kids go through on the brink of adolescence, it might be difficult to express your emotions. With music, we were able to overcome obstacles and fears and say what we wanted to say through a song.”

Niko Lehtonen, grade teacher, Rastaala School

The fast development of technology presents new challenges for schools and music education to keep up. Mobile and music technology has brought musical equipment into everyone’s pockets, so schools, and music lessons in particular, now have new opportunities that have not been available before.

Creating, composing, and expressing yourself through music no longer requires an ability to play traditional instruments or any knowledge of musical theory. By using modern music technology, you can give all students from all backgrounds the equal opportunity to participate in creative processes.

Technology has become an important and natural part of the everyday life of kids in many parts of the world. Schools, however, are not fully aware of the opportunities offered by technology even in music instruction – teachers are often shy or even scared to use technology. Changing the way you use technology in school requires learning entirely new skills and classroom practices.

INTO MUSIC - Technology Supporting Creativity adds modern technology, and producing, composing and writing music into music lessons.

This innovation is based on the new Finnish curriculum and offers schools and teachers know-how about music technology as well as tangible tools and methods for using digital learning environments to teach music.

Kids of all ages, all schools and groups can make use of the lessons. It requires no musical expertise from the teacher and no previous experience in making music, singing or playing instruments from the students.

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Intended Outcomes
Target Group
Resources Needed
A music classroom and music equipment, tablet computers, 1-3 months for implementation.
HundrED Criteria
This innovation shows how you can make music with the help of technology without any previous experience.
Students work together on the project to learn new things and improve their self-confidence.
As long as you have access to a few tablets, you can implement this innovation.

How do you implement it?


Getting to know the concept

INTO MUSIC - Technology Supporting Creativity concept was developed by an award-winning composer and producer team made up by three Finnish experts in music and teaching.

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You can get to know the team, innovation as well as the parties and foundations supporting the concept on the soon to be opened web page.


Contacting the team

If you represent a municipality, city, or school, contact members of the INTO MUSIC team:

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Janne Hiedanniemi
Producer, Educator & Co-founder

Tuomas Hiedanniemi
Producer, Educator & Co-founder

Kari Saarilahti
Producer, Educator & Co-founder

Tell us that you are willing to organise an INTO MUSIC project in your area or at your school. The project will include teacher training on how to use modern music technology to create music.

Discuss the practical details, the timetable and any expenses that might apply.

The project can be started at earliest in 1-2 weeks after first contacting us.


Checking the school’s equipment

The INTO MUSIC team will check the equipment and other things required for the project and help you figure out how you can update your devices most cost-efficiently.

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This allows the team to support your school’s, city’s or area’s goals in the best way possible and plan a learning unit that is suitable for your level.


The training and classes

The INTO MUSIC team will train teachers and teach the student project at your own school.

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This will allow teachers to observe and participate in the music pedagogy in the same environment they themselves teach in.

Through their personal experience, the training, and the support material, teachers can continue the work with the students and apply what they have learned to teaching music after the project.

The teacher training and student project at your school will take around 1–3 months altogether.

The project will include:

  • Using modern music technology

  • The basics of composing and writing lyrics

  • Analysing the basic elements of music (rhythm, melody, structure, harmony)

  • Learning music recording and production techniques and

  • Discussing and expressing emotions with music

The student project always includes a recording artist, who will come to the school to talk about their music and encourage students to make their own creative decisions when writing songs.

If you have iPads, the project will use the free GarageBand-application. Other platforms and devices can also be used during the project. The school’s own instruments and other equipment will always be included as a part of the project.


Evaluation and support after implementation

The project will be evaluated before, during and after the project.

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The evaluation model includes self evaluation, peer evaluation among teachers, reflection, and updating best practices.

The evaluation is used to determine the success of the project and define what kind of further support is required after the project. Continuous evaluation also has an important role in the development of this innovation.


An example of an INTO MUSIC project

The Rastaala school in Espoo is one of the INTO MUSIC schools. During the project, sixth graders composed, wrote and produced their own songs. Most of the students had no previous experience in music or playing instruments.

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The project started with applied training sessions that were attended not only by the teachers but also by the school principal. The students started from the basics of making music and trying out modern tools and applications, and their most useful functions.

During classes, students listened to and analyzed their favourite music and studied the structure of songs and musical instruments. Students divided up into groups of 4–5 to create their own songs. Everyone got to play to their own strengths; some wrote lyrics, while others focused on sounds and experimenting with music production. The songs were worked on during music, mother tongue, and English language lessons over two months.

The INTO MUSIC team visited the school six times. Students worked on their songs with the help of teachers between the visits. The school was visited by the Finnish platinum-selling pop singer Diandra to encourage the students and give them tips. Your school can invite local musicians to be a part of the music lessons, no matter their professional level, to help increase motivation and to make use of the connections the school has to the local area.

Every group made their own song from scratch. The song genres ranged from acoustic pop to experimental electronic music.

The finished project was celebrated together with the whole school at the INTO MUSIC party. Students presented the new songs to the student body, the faculty, and the families of students.


What does it look like in practice?

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What are others saying?


Ask about this innovation


Want to reach out to the innovators?

Janne Hiedanniemi