Music Education Faculty: Elise Sobol

Elise Sobol, Ed.D. educator/pianist has made unique contributions to the field of teaching music to special learners. Author of An Attitude and Approach for Teaching Music to Special Learners (Pentland Press, USA . 2001, first edition, and MENC/Rowman & Littlefield Education, second edition, 2008, third edition, 2017), numerous journal articles, contributing author to city, state, and national education publications, she has received recognition for her work in music in special education. One of the National Honor Roll of Outstanding American Teachers Professor Sobol is included in distinguished biographical publications such as Marquis' Who's Who in American Education, Who's Who in the World, Two Thousand Notable American Women, and the International Dictionary of Distinguished Leadership.

Professor Sobol has K-12 experience teaching from early childhood through high school in regular and special education settings. Serving on the music education adjunct faculties of NYU, Long Island University College of Arts, Communications and Design and Brooklyn Conservatory of Music, City University of New York.  Professor Sobol retired in June 2016 from teaching high school music for students with developmental disabilities including autism spectrum disorders at the Rosemary Kennedy School, Wantagh, Long Island.  Since 1993, she has been the New York State School Music Association (NYSSMA) Chairperson of Music for Special Learners acting as an important resource for educators not only state wide, but nationally too.  She additionally serves as Co-Chair of the Portfolio Community for the Regents Blue Ribbon Commission on the Arts helping to develop the 4 + 1 Arts Pathway. Active as an international clinician, Professor Sobol has brought her interactive style of facilitative instruction to participants throughout the Americas, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, and Asia. Topics draw upon her extensive research and experience teaching students with social, emotional behavioral, developmental, and learning disabilities with titles such as "Building Bridges for Learning with Music," "Cultivating Cognition with Musical Interventions," "Reaching Higher with Music in Education," "Music for Milestones," "Rehearsal Techniques for Successful Inclusion Practices in Music Performance,” and “Music-Assisted Learning for Students on the Autism Spectrum.”

A three-time Grammy nominated Music Educator, Dr. Sobol was named 2016 Education Update, Professor of the Year and 2016 Honoree for the Music Educators Association of New York City. Designated by the New York State Education Department as 2015 New York State Teacher of the Year Finalist, in all her professional activities, she continues her advocacy to serve the underserved. “Every child should and can have school success. It is up to us as teachers to find out how the child learns best and then to adapt instructional strategies accordingly to optimize his/her potential. Let us join together in this common hymn, to make a difference in the lives of our children in our state, nation and world.”  Further honors include the 2012 New York State School Music Association Distinguished Service Award, the 2004 Ernest Kay International Foundation Award), the 2003 Certificate of service in recognition of continuing contributions to Music Education at New York University,  citations from the Town Board of Oyster Bay, The New York State Assembly, nomination for the New York State "Women of Distinction" Program, the Very Special Arts Award of Honor, appearances on channel 12 News and NewsDay's Long Island Life Winners column.  Active professionally as a pianist, Sobol has appeared as speaker/performer in New York City, Boston, Washington, D.C., San Francisco, Chicago, Dublin, Lisbon, Portugal, Melbourne, Australia, New Zealand, Oranjestad, Aruba, in both Cambridge and Oxford, England and recently made her debut in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. In 2007, Sobol was re-engaged by the Melbourne Musicians Chamber Orchestra, Melbourne, Australia for the world premiere performance of the Walter Skolnick Piano Concerto composed for and dedicated to her.  With specialized performance and theory studies at both the Mannes College of Music and the Juilliard School, Professor Sobol earned her Bachelor of Arts from the New School and her Master of Arts from Teacher College, Columbia University and her Doctorate in Education from St. John’s University, New York.

On faculty in the Department of Music and the Performing Arts Professions since 2000, teaching music in special education courses and serving as a thesis mentor; this Fall, 2017 Dr. Sobol will assume a greater role in the Department of Music Education in the Music Licensure programs as Department Coordinator for Field Observations and Student Teaching and Senior and Graduate Music Education Advisor. Office hours by appointment. Email contact: es86@nyu.edu.

Publications as Author:

Sobol, E. S. (August 1994). Music Success for Special Learners, Inclusion Buzzword- Hope for the Future!  New York: New York State Council of Educational Association.

Sobol, E. S. (September 1994). “The Red, Green, Yellow, Songin NYSSMA Notes. Westbury, NY: New York State School Music Association. 

Sobol, E. S. (January 1995). Assembly Programs in NYSSMA Notes. Westbury, NY: New York State School Music Association.               

Sobol, E. S. (March 1995). “Music Success for Special Learners.” in School Music News. Westbury, NY: New York State School Music Association.

Sobol, E. S. (May/June 1995). “Music and the Mouse.”  In NYSSMA Notes.  Westbury, NY: New York State School Music Association.

Sobol, E. S. (November 1995). “Magic Microphone and Awesome Video Camera.” NYSSMA Notes. Westbury, NY: New York State School Music Association.

Sobol, E. S. (February 1997). “It Depends on Y.O.U.” in NYSSMA Notes. Westbury, New York State School Music Association.

Sobol, E. S. (December 1998). “Loud, Louder, Loudest.” in School Music News. Westbury, NY: New York State School Music Association.

Sobol, E. S. (October 1999). “Communication through Music: A Language beyond Words” in School Music News. Westbury, NY: New York State School Music Association.     

Sobol, E. S. (August 2001). “Is That Your Joanna There? The Musical Rhythmic Intelligence- How Fantastic!” School Music News. Westbury, NY: New York State School Music Association.      

Sobol, E. S. (December 2001). “Instructional Music Teaching for Special Learners” School Music News. Westbury, NY: New York State School Music Association. 

Sobol, E.S. (2001). An Attitude and Approach for Teaching Music to Special Learners. Raleigh, NC: Pentland Press.

Sobol, E. S. (2004). “Loud, Louder, Loudest-Teaching the Dynamics of Life.” in Spotlight on Making Music with Special Learners. Reston, VA: MENC: The National Association for Music Education, 68–71.

Sobol, E. S. (January 2006). “Battle Victorious with Music.” in School Music News. Westbury, NY: New York State School Music Association.

Sobol, E. S. (March 2006). “Literacy Support: Applications of the Color Scheme Red, Yellow and Green” in School Music News. Westbury, NY: New York State School Music   Association.

Sobol, E.S. (July 6, 2006). Speech Transcript: “Reaching Higher with Music in Special Education.” ABI/IBC Inaugural World Forum, July 4–9, 2006, St. Catherine’s College, Oxford University, Oxford, England.

Sobol, E. S. (2008). An Attitude and Approach for Teaching Music to Special Learners,2d ed. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield Education in Partnership with the National Association for Music Education. Translations: 2011 Hebrew Edition Ach Publishers Ltd., Israel, and 2013 Korean Edition, Sigma Press, Korea

Sobol, E. S. (Spring 2011). “Use of Music to Increase Cognitive Development in Math and Reading for    Students with Severe Learning Disabilities” (Unpublished doctoral manuscript). St. John’s University, Queens, New York.

Sobol, E. S. (Spring 2012). “Ethnography—Standards-Based Music Instruction to Enhance Literacy with Students with Severe Developmental Disabilities” (Unpublished doctoral manuscript). St. John’s University, Queens, New York.

Sobol, E. S. (Summer 2012). “Quantitative Mini-Study—Autism Music Research: Guitar Instruction to   Enhance Numeracy Skills for Students with Developmental Disabilities” (Unpublished doctoral manuscript). St. John’s University, Queens, New York.

Sobol, E. S. (2014). Autism Research: Music Aptitude’s Effect on Developmental/Academic Gains for Students with Significant Cognitive/Language Delays. Order No. 3581407 (St. John’s University, New York, School of Education and Human Services), ProQuest Dissertations and Theses, 127.

Sobol, E. S. (January–February 2015). “Academic Improvement for Students with Signiicant Disabilities.” School Music News. Westbury: New York State School Music Association, Volume 78 (5), 15–17.

Sobol, E.S. (2017). An Attitude and Approach for Teaching Music to Special Learners, Third Edition. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield Education co-published with     National Association for Music Education.

Publications as Contributing Author:

The State Education Department (2001). Tools for Schools, Improving Student Achievement through the Arts. Albany: The University of the State of New York.

NYSSMA and State Education Department (2002). Music: A Resource Guide for Standards Based Instruction. Albany: The University of the State of New York.

MENC (2004). Spotlight on Making Music with Special Learners. Reston, VA: MENC: The National Association for Music Education:

MENC (2006). Jennifer Scott Miceli, Elise Sobol, Maureen T. Makowski, and Izzet Mergen.“A Four-Way Perspective on the Development and Importance of Music Learning Theory-Based Pre-K–16 Music Education Partnerships Involving Music for Special Learners. Journal of Music Teacher Education 16 (1), 65– 78.

New York City Board of Education (2008). New York City Blueprint for Teaching and Learning in Music, PreK– 12, 2d ed., New York: New York City Board of Education.

MENC (August 2009). P. Moore, ed. “Confronting ADHD in the Music Classroom.” Teaching Music 17, no. 1, 57; www.nafme.org.

MENC (June 2010). L. Brown, ed. “Tips for Teaching Students with Instructional Strategies for Strategies with ADD or ADHD.” General Music Today. This was part of the Special Needs Series that Elise Sobol contributed to under Linda Brown in 2010. The articles are listed and were a part of the General Music Section Archives Forums There were other articles too including “Strategize for Students with Vision Loss,” “Don’t Let Physical Disabilities Stop Students” and “Music and Students with Hearing Loss.”

R. Colwell and P. Webster, eds. 2011). “Music Learning in Special Education: Focus on Autism and Developmental Disabilities.” MENC Handbook on Research on Music Teaching and Learning, Vol. 2: Applications: New York: Oxford University Press, 6. 233–55.

New York City Department of Education (2015). New York City Blueprint for Music                                  Teaching and Learning, PreK–12, 3d ed. New York: New York City Department of Education.

Educational Videos with Elise Sobol and Special Education Students.

Demetrio Maduro, Lila Mackaay, and Glenda Arends (July 1, 2006). “Programa Nos Amigonan Special y Unico. Mihor cu nunca y exclusivamente na Kooyman,” Oranjestad, Aruba.

C & M Communication & Business Management Consultant (2006). “Reaching Higher at Emma School, Aruba.” Oranjestad, Aruba: U.N.O.C.A. and Muchilo Fundacion Creativo.

NYSSMA (2010). “Music Views across the State.” Standards-Based Teaching and Learning across the State- Elise S. Sobol Directionality in Sound, Shape and Space.

NAfME. (2012). The 2012 Concert for Music in Our Schools Month. Rosemary Kennedy School Glee Club, under direction of Elise S. Sobol, “The Star-Spangled Banner.” This historic appearance was the first time a special education high school glee club with students with severe developmental disabilities, including autism spectrum disorders, was featured singing our national anthem as part of the Music in Our Schools inaugural online concert.

Recordings

Mozart, W. A. (2003). Piano Concerto No. 17 in G Major, K. 453. Melbourne Chamber Orchestra, under the direction of Frank U. Pam, Artistic Director; Elise Sobol, piano soloist. Melbourne, Australia: 3 MBS-FM Melbourne.

Sobol, E. S. (2004). From Elise: Melville to Melbourne. Works by Arlen, Bach, Chaminade, Grieg, Mozart, Ravel and Skolnick. Hempstead, NY: Garrick Studios.

New York Classics (July 5. 2005). Music of Walter Skolnik & Vladimir Groudine. New York City: Donnel Library Concert Hall. Elise Sobol, Pianist with other contributing artists including Petina Cole, Rafael Wenke, Peter Tarsio, Yris Gute, Jeffrey Lance, and Dennis Dougherty.

Sobol, E. S. (2011). From Elise: Melville to Melbourne. Works by Arlen, Bach, Chaminade, Grieg, Mozart, Ravel, and Skolnick.Elise Sobol, Piano; Petina Cole, Flute; Lillemor Klang Zakkay, Voice. New inclusion of Educational Commentary and Introduction from University of Waikato, 40th Anniversary Celebration, Tauranga, New Zealand. New York: R & S Wilhelm Recording Remastering and Design.

Updated May, 2017.