Vocal Warmups Review & Giveaway!

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As you can tell by the blog title, I’m both a piano and a voice teacher. Over the past several years, I’ve made it a priority to further my education via well written teaching blogs and magazines. New and interesting piano resources are generally easy to find.

Vocal resources? Not so much. Unless you’d like to sign up for expensive monthly or even yearly payments, well-made and reasonably priced vocal resources are generally  much harder to find.

That’s why I’m so thrilled to introduce you to

a fresh new blog that entered the scene last year.

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Meet Janelle Laarakker, the creator of The Vibrant Vocalist. Janelle is a soprano, pianist, and composer. She completed her Grade 10 Royal Conservatory of Music certificates in both piano and voice, achieving First Class Honors, and is now completing a degree in Vocal Performance from Wilfrid Laurier University in Ontario.

Her blog, The Vibrant Vocalist, is an up-and-coming resource for voice teachers and vocalists. Over the past several months she’s featured a number of free resources, several of which I’ve been implementing in my studio.

Earlier this month, Janelle gave me the opportunity

to work with a brand new resource that she created

to “shake up” the typical student warm-up routine:

Vocal Technique in a Jar

If you’re looking for some fresh warm-ups for your students, this is a great resource. Janelle even offers a sneak peak of the exercises in her blog post. Here’s a snapshot of one of the exercise samples:

samplevoiceThe Specs:

  • 20 different vocal exercisethat focus on developing dynamics, clear articulations, and breath control.
  • Exercises use a variety of different vowels and feature interesting rhythms.
  • Studio Licensing so that you can reproduce the warmups for your entire studio.
  • Unique Instructions to help students learn a few exercises each week.
  • At only $5, this is a really great resource!

How Does it Work?

Here are the Vibrant Vocalist’s Instructions:

The Basic Idea: The teacher selects a number of exercises to tuck into the student’s jar each week, and every day when warming up the student draws one (or several) exercises from the jar to practice.

For more advanced singers with the ability to read music, the exercises I choose to put in their jars remains a surprise until they go home to practice. They learn the exercises independently, and at their next lesson we review the exercises together and discuss improvement strategies. Every week I add a few new exercises, until the student has gradually mastered all 20. I ask these students to draw three exercises from the jar each day.

For younger singers, we review the exercises I select before I place them in the jar, so that they are familiar with them before practicing alone at home. I generally trade old exercises for new exercises every couple of weeks, so that they do not become overwhelmed. I ask these singers to draw one or two exercises from the jar each day.

My Variation: Since most of my voice students just carry their books and binders (no bag), I’m using these warmups a little differently. Rather than putting them in a jar, I’ve printed them on card stock, and put them onto lobster clasp key rings so that we can change them out easily each week. The key rings can be clipped to the inside of a 3-ring binder. I’ll try to upload a picture of this in action later this week!

The Giveaway

On Friday, February 20th , I will be giving away one FREE copy of the Vocal Technique in a Jar. Entering the Giveaway is simple. There are 3 Ways that you can enter. (Complete all 3 tasks for more opportunities to win!)

  1. LIKE the Vibrant Vocalist on Facebook and comment here to let me know you’ve completed your task!
  2. SHARE this blog post on Facebook, Pinterest, or Twitter and leave a comment below!
  3. Leave a Comment with an idea about how YOU would use Vocal Technique in a Jar in your studio!

Remember: You must leave a comment for each entry! Good luck!

Stay TunedBe sure to SUBSCRIBE to the blog for future updates!

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31 Comments

  • by Heather Posted February 16, 2015 11:34 am

    I really like the idea of the key ring. I would expand it further by printing different types of exercises on different colored card stock. That way a student can select one from each color and get a varied warm up routine. Ex. Breathing, articulations, vowels, etc.

  • by Jeannie Posted February 16, 2015 11:42 am

    I, like Heather, like the lobster key ring. I have been looking for vocal curriculum that really works and keeps students interested.

  • by Jeannie Posted February 16, 2015 11:43 am

    Shared on my Facebook page

  • by Jeannie Posted February 16, 2015 11:47 am

    Liked and commented on Blog

  • by Valerie Sampson Posted February 16, 2015 11:47 am

    Shared on FB. Would love to win this and use with my students!

  • by Christina Posted February 16, 2015 12:32 pm

    This is exactly what I’m looking for! I am anxious to find some new techniques in my studio because I feel I am getting bored of the same techniques and warm ups everyday. I’d like to take more courses and workshops to learn more but I’m just starting my family and it’s just not feasible right now. I have completed all three requirements for this draw!

  • by Anola Posted February 16, 2015 1:01 pm

    Liked and shared 😀

  • by Melissa Posted February 16, 2015 1:29 pm

    I’ve liked Vibrant Vocalist on facebook!

  • by Doreen Canzanella Posted February 16, 2015 1:40 pm

    teaching vocals to young learners and beginners is daunting at best. New ideas and techniques help keep the interest alive. Thank you

    • by Doreen Canzanella Posted February 16, 2015 1:41 pm

      Liked and shared

  • by Valerie Wilkerson Posted February 16, 2015 2:16 pm

    Liked the FB Page

  • by Valerie Wilkerson Posted February 16, 2015 2:16 pm

    Shared on my FB page

  • by Valerie Wilkerson Posted February 16, 2015 2:17 pm

    I think I would make the suggestions into cards (printed on card stock) and keep the “deck” in each students folder and have them draw from deck at the start of each lesson. Seems like wonderful resource!

  • by Carla Posted February 16, 2015 2:59 pm

    Voice has always been a hard class for me to teach because I am usually bored with what I am teaching. Shared on FB.

  • by Carla Posted February 16, 2015 2:59 pm

    Liked Blog

  • by Carla Posted February 16, 2015 3:01 pm

    I like the key chain idea as well as Valerie’s idea of keeping the deck in the student foler

  • by Christie Posted February 16, 2015 5:24 pm

    I would use the cards for sight-reading for not only my voice students, but also my piano students.

  • by Ian Posted February 16, 2015 5:38 pm

    Liked! Looks fantastic! 🙂

  • by Melanie Tapson Posted February 16, 2015 9:44 pm

    Liked and shared! I’d use it to help add to my repertoire of voice exercises as a voice teacher and voice therapist (SLP) so that I could help my singers find their easiest, best voices – new ideas for exercises are always welcome! And it would be a great resource to recommend to my singers and other voice clients!

  • by Hannah Berko Violette Posted February 17, 2015 12:01 am

    Hello…”Liked” the Vibrant Vocalist on Facebook…too bad there’s not a LOVE button! I share your frustration in the dearth of vocal pedagogy materials…

  • by Hannah Berko Violette Posted February 17, 2015 12:02 am

    AND I shared your blog post with my own audience…who knows, maybe it will drum up some vocal business for me! https://www.facebook.com/bchms?ref=bookmarks

  • by Hannah Berko Violette Posted February 17, 2015 12:04 am

    I don’t have any regular vocal students right now, but I do have some occasional “coachees” and work with the soprano section of our community choir; always looking for creative and skill building warmups. Also, I liked a previous comment about using the exercised with piano students as well; I think getting them singing as well as playing really helps cement skills and concepts AND develops new vocalists.

  • by Brad Posted February 17, 2015 8:41 am

    liked on FB

  • by Brad Posted February 17, 2015 8:42 am

    signed up for Blog

  • by Brad Posted February 17, 2015 8:43 am

    Vocals are hard to teach since so many students only want to come in and sing a song from YOUTUBE. Need new ideas to curtail “I just wanta sing” students into actually learning to perform correctly.

  • by Lena Purnell Posted February 17, 2015 9:02 am

    Liked on facebook

  • by Lena Purnell Posted February 17, 2015 9:02 am

    Shared on facebook

  • by Lena Purnell Posted February 17, 2015 9:07 am

    I would use it for my daughters voice practice and exam preparation. I would also use it with piano students to practice vocalization and solfege skills and ear training.

  • by Lori Posted February 17, 2015 9:52 am

    I liked the FB page.

  • by Lori Posted February 17, 2015 9:53 am

    I would also use it with my piano students so they can learn to be better accompanists. We’re already learning 5-finger scales, so why not show them a practical application!

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