I wanted to create a music education approach, which would take into account the needs of the child, irrespective of their level of talent. My experience taught me that almost every child is musical, and that all have areas in which they can develop.
Carl Orff 1895 – 1982
Orff Schulwerk pedagogy is holistic, learner centered music and movement education. The pedagogy is founded on an interactive teaching process and its elements are listening, moving, speaking, singing and playing. Its approach to music making and dance moves from experimentation to improvisation and expression, and fuses musical expression with other art forms.
Orff Schulwerk pedagogy is not bound to any one environment or target group. It believes in everybody’s learning potential. Orff Schulwerk pedagogy is based on the belief in the importance of leaving room for the music educator’s own skills, innovation, and learning. The originators of Orff Schulwerk pedagoy are the German composer Carl Orff (1895-1982) and the German pedagogue, dancer and composer Gunild Keetman (1904-1990). When developing the pedagogical concepts, Carl Orff searched for a new expression of the Greek word musiké. Musiké means a combination of music, movement, dance and speech.
Carl Orff described his approach as an idea, a “wildflower”. If a flower is handled with care, it can blossom while still retaining its own identity, which is the essence of a wildflower.