Electronic Musical Instruments

Electronic Musical Instruments

  1. Keyboards
  2. Controllers (Other)
  3. Synthesizers & Samplers
  4. Ensemble Performance


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This is an example of an electronic keyboard. It is a Casio Privia PX-150 Digital Piano. It has 88 keys and can be connected to another device via USB, it also has 2 stereo phone jacks. It has built in speakers for when it is not connected to other devices. Something like this would be extremely useful in the classroom for recording straight on to a computer or for learning keyboard techniques without having to purchase a full piano.


A controller is a keyboard that doesn’t have it’s own sounds, instead it must be connected to another device to produce a sound. Controllers are really useful for using programs such as finale and garage band.

Synthesizers and Samplers

Samplers use recordings of the instrument they are trying to emulate in order to produce a sound while synthesizers create their own sound that is not quite like the actual instrument.

Ensemble Performance

Interesting performances can be created using electronic musical instruments such as this performance by an Indonesian band performing Payphone by Maroon 5

This type of performance would be really useful in a classroom setting to get students who don’t play an instrument to still create music.

TI:ME Areas of competency for Electronic Musical Instruments include:

  • Operate electronic instruments
  • Understand their unique characteristics.
  • Use them in the classroom.
  • Connect instruments to computers and other instruments using MIDI
  • Create layered and split keyboard sounds for performances.
  • Choose and edit sounds from stored libraries
  • Create sounds using an electronic instrument.
  • Create simple to complex musical pieces.
  • Teach dexterity and technique.
  • Teach musical processes with electronic keyboards.
  • Integrate electronic instruments into existing ensembles
  • Create entirely new electronic ensembles.
  • Operate sound reinforcement equipment
  • Set up and connect a variety of electronic instruments for use in concerts in the school environment.

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