August 25

Ep 3 – Being bold with culturally diverse music education w/ Jennifer Walden


Jennifer Walden is a truly inspiring international school music educator. 

Originally from Canada, Jennifer has now worked as an international school music teacher in Taiwan, Colombia, Syria, Malaysia, Singapore, the Netherlands, Canada, Venezuela, and the Dominican Republic. She now works at Carol Morgan School and with Smithsonian Folkways Recordings.

Jennifer describes her approach to music education as truly global, teaching culturally diverse understanding, awareness, and appreciation through music. Jennifer has presented at over 50 conferences and has multiple publications in academic journals. 

In this episode, Jennifer explores:

  • Some of her most memorable experiences working as an international school music teacher in multiple countries over the last 30+ years.
  • Insights on how to connect with the local music scene when you arrive in a new country.
  • How music educators can be bold, yet balanced, when teaching culturally diverse music in the international school setting. 
  • Ideas for how to approach the topic of 'cultural appropriation' in music education.
  • Wonderful ideas for how to integrate music from other cultures into the international school music classroom.

I found this conversation inspiring and uplifting in many ways! Jennifer has such a warm and fun presence. Her experience in the international school music education world makes this episode one for everyone!


Get in touch with Jennifer:




Links to other content referenced in this episode:
Smithsonian Institute Learning Pathways resource: 
Jennifer's recent academic article: "A Drum, a Gong, and a Lion: Three Decades of Culturally Diverse Music Education in International and Canadian Schools" (2019)
Link here


cultural diversity, Curriculum, Dominican Republic, global, Pedagogy