Orff-Schulwerk Teacher Education Program

Orff-Schulwerk Teacher Education Program

  • Registration opens soon for Orff Extended! June 17-21, 2024. (For individuals who have completed Level III.) Learn more here.
  • Registration opens soon for Orff Level II! July 8 - 19, 2024. Learn more here.

Scholarship Applications are due May 15 (including this scholarship application form and a letter of reference). The scholarship application includes...

  1. (In the form) Information about your background and employment
  2. (In the form) A 500-word essay describing your interest in participating in an Orff-Scholarship teacher education course at the chosen level. If you are enrolling in Level III, the essay should include a discussion of the impact of previous level(s) on your teaching. Use specific examples whenever possible. 
  3. (Emailed to Dr. Lisa Runner) A letter of recommendation to support your scholarship application from a principal, supervisor, or recent college instructor who is familiar with your teaching in the school or church setting or with your work as a therapist. This recommendation letter may not have been used the previous year to support a scholarship application. Please have your reference email the recommendation directly to Dr. Lisa Runner at runnerla@appstate.edu. Letters must be received no later than Wednesday, May 15, 2024.

The cost for each level is $475, which includes all required materials. On-campus housing (single room) is available for an additional fee. For more information, please contact Dr. Lisa Runner at runnerla@appstate.edu.

The Hayes School of Music at Appalachian State University offers all levels of Orff-Schulwerk teacher education courses in sequential summers. Each Levels course involves 10 days of study spread over two weeks. The daily schedule includes time in Orff-Schulwerk pedagogy, movement, recorder, and special topics. While the materials presented are intended for use with children, one of the goals for each course is to improve our own musicianship. Expanding our abilities, experimenting with new ideas, and exposing ourselves to new challenges not only makes us better musicians but also allows us to view learning from our students' perspective.

About the Orff-Schulwerk Approach

Orff-Schulwerk is a unique approach to music education that includes multiple areas of musical expression. Based on the teachings of Carl Orff, this child-centered approach incorporates speech, movement, song, and instrument playing in a creative atmosphere where students are actively engaged in the music making process. The concepts of music (rhythm, melody, form, expression, harmony, and timbre) are explored through the musical skills of singing, moving, playing instruments, listening, creating, and speaking. Throughout this process, children learn actively via imitation and exploration leading to improvisation and music literacy. The instructional goals of the Orff-Schulwerk teacher are the same as the "traditional" teacher – the development of musical skills and understandings. The difference lies in the means by which these goals are achieved.


Pedagogy and movement instructor Dr. Maribeth Yoder-White, Adjunct Professor of Music Education in the Hayes School of Music at Appalachian State University, is also a choral and general music education specialist. She is a frequent Orff-Schulwerk clinician as well as a respected choral conductor and adjudicator. She holds degrees from Lenoir-Rhyne College (B.M., Music) and the University of North Carolina at Greensboro (M.M., Music; Ph.D, Music) where she was a faculty member for nine years. Maribeth studied Orff-Schulwerk with Konnie Saliba, Jeff Kriske, Randy Delelles, and Jos Wuytack.

The recorder instructor will be Dr. Lisa Adkins Runner, Associate Professor of Music Education in the Hayes School of Music at Appalachian State University. Lisa holds degrees from Milligan College (B.A., Music, Education), East Tennessee State University (M.A., Media Services/Instructional Technology), and Appalachian State University (Ed.D., Educational Leadership). She completed all levels of Orff Certification at Western Carolina University with Konnie Saliba.

Music Education at Appalachian State University

The Hayes School of Music offers a Bachelor of Music in Music Education, which provides skilled musicians the opportunity to develop expertise in the classroom, ensemble, and private studio in preparation for careers and state certification as public music school teachers and directors. Read more about the Music Education program in the Hayes School of Music.