Classroom Maestro: FAQs

Classroom Maestro: FAQs

Classroom Maestro 5

Is Classroom Maestro 5 available for Windows?

Classroom Maestro 5 is not yet available for Windows. We plan to provide an upgrade for the Windows version, but we do not have a timetable that we can announce.

The current version for Window is Classroom Maestro 3. Although the version number may suggest that it is two revisions behind the Mac, it is actually just one revision behind as far as the feature set is concerned. (Classroom Maestro 4 for the Mac represented a rewrite of the Mac code as a 64-bit app for compatibility with the current Mac operating system. Version 4 for Mac had feature set that was identical to that of version 3 for Windows.)

What are the new features of Classroom Maestro 5?

Classroom Maestro 5 has a brand new look that includes a resizable, on-screen keyboard. It provides a choice of 6 keyboard styles, each of which can appear flat or 3D. There are four styles of pedals and seven choices of keyboard frame. These choices, combined with 10 background colors and four colors for the animated keys, provide over 13,000 graphic appearances.

Other features include:

  • custom keyboard range
  • optional note names above the keyboard
  • optional solfège names
  • melodic intervals
  • choice of interval analysis
  • option to hide staff or keyboard
  • 120 instrumental sounds

How do I upgrade to Classroom Maestro 5?

If you are using Classroom Maestro for Windows, you should not upgrade at this time. An upgrade at this time will not provide you with new features on the Windows platform.

If you are a Macintosh user who previously purchased Classroom Maestro, you are eligible for an upgrade price. The precise upgrade price is determined by whether you purchased Classroom Maestro on or after January 1, 2021 or whether you purchased it previously.

To obtain Classroom Maestro 5 for the upgrade price, you should:

  • log into your account
  • then access the Classroom Maestro product page

Assuming that you had previously purchased Classroom Maestro, the website will adjust the price of Classroom Maestro accordingly. You may then proceed to purchase the new version.

Classroom Maestro Orchestra Edition

Is Classroom Maestro Orchestra Edition available for Windows?

Classroom Maestro Orchestra Edition is not yet available for Windows. We plan to provide a Windows version, but we do not have a timetable that we can announce.

Classroom Maestro 3 for Windows is the most recent version of Classroom Maestro on the PC platform. It includes the core set of Classroom Maestro features that are available on the Mac. However, it does not include the instruments available in the Orchestra Edition nor the resizable keyboard that is available in Classroom Maestro 5 for Mac.

How is Classroom Maestro Orchestra Edition different from the standard version Classroom Maestro?

Classroom Maestro Orchestra Edition includes all of the features of Classroom Maestro 5 for Mac. In addition, it include instrumental displays for:

  • Recorders: Sopranino • Soprano • Alto
  • Woodwinds: Flute • Oboe • Clarinet • Bassoon
  • Brass: French Horn • Trumpet • Trombone • Euphonium
  • Strings: Violin • Viola • Cello • Bass

Can I upgrade to Classroom Maestro Orchestra Edition from the standard edition?

Classroom Maestro Orchestra Edition is offered as a new, standalone application. We do not offer an upgrade from the standard edition to the Orchestra Edition.

Setting Up a Classroom or Private Studio

What do I need to set up Classroom Maestro in the classroom?

Classroom Maestro requires a display that is large enough to accommodate the number of students who are being taught. Here are some examples:

  • Large Class
    Usually requires a projector and screen, an interactive whiteboard, or a large flat panel display
  • Small Class
    Any of the items listed above or a small flat panel display
  • Individual Lesson
    Laptop screen
  • Long Distance Lesson (with computers and keyboards connected over the Internet)
    Laptop computer, Internet MIDI software, and Classroom Maestro software at both ends of an Internet connection

Can I use Classroom Maestro as a private instructor?

Yes. Many teachers use Classroom Maestro during individual lessons. Classroom Maestro provides an interactive, electronic display for both the student and the teacher. The teacher can use Classroom Maestro to quiz the student or to ask the student to demonstrate an understanding of note names, intervals, scales, or chords.

What kind of keyboards work with Classroom Maestro?

You can use any MIDI keyboard with Classroom Maestro.

I don’t have a projector, is Classroom Maestro still useful for me?

Classroom Maestro requires a display that is large enough to accommodate the number of students who are being taught. Here are some examples:

  • Large Class
    Usually requires a projector and screen, an interactive whiteboard, or a large flat panel display
  • Small Class
    Any of the items listed above or a small flat panel display
  • Individual Lesson
    Laptop screen
  • Long Distance Lesson (with computers and keyboards connected over the Internet)
    Laptop computer, Internet MIDI software, and Classroom Maestro software at both ends of an Internet connection

Can I use Classroom Maestro with a Smart Board or similar touchscreen display?

Yes. Double-tap the display to show or hide the floating Tools palette. This palette gives you access to the various functions that are normally engaged by pressing a key on your computer keyboard.

Position the on-screen keyboard above or below the staff as desired (where you can reach it), and use the on-screen keyboard to enter notes. The Tools palette has a button for freezing the notes onto the display.

Classroom Maestro Tips

How do I move the on-screen keyboard to the top of the screen?

Hold down the Option key on a Mac or the Alt key on a PC and then press the K key. Doing so will enable you to toggle the position of the on-screen keyboard between the bottom and the top of the window.

How do I show or hide the pedals for the on-screen keyboard?

Hold down the Option key on a Mac or the Alt key on a PC and then press the P key. Doing so will enable you to toggle off and on the display of the keyboard pedals.

How do I change the background color?

Hold down the Command key on a Mac or the Control key on a PC and then press any of the number keys from 0 to 9. Doing so will enable you to cycle through 10 different background colors.

How do I keep the notes displayed without holding the keys down on my MIDI instrument?

You can freeze the display by engaging the Caps Lock key on your computer keyboard. You can also hold down the Shift key or you can press and old a pedal on your MIDI keyboard that has been designated for this purpose.

To use a foot pedal, select Display Options… from the Options menu, check the box next to “Freeze Display with this Pedal,” and then choose the pedal that you would like to use from the drop-down menu. If you are using an interactive whiteboard, double-tap the whiteboard to bring up the floating Tools palette. This palette has a button for freezing the display.

NOTE: If you are in chord progression mode, the simplest way to freeze chords on the display is to designate the sustain pedal for this purpose. Then, you can simply play chords and pedal in the normal fashion. With each depression of the pedal, the currently notated chord will be frozen onto the display. Don’t use the sustain pedal simultaneously with the Caps Lock key.

How do I hide the ”answers?”

You can give quizzes by displaying notes on the staff and then toggling off and on the analysis feature.

Press the A key on your computer keyboard to toggle off and on the analysis feature.

How do I switch between jazz/pop chord notation and Roman numeral analysis?

You can press the J key on your computer keyboard to switch between jazz/pop chord notation and Roman numeral analysis.

Troubleshooting

Why aren’t my chords spelled the way I expect them to be spelled?

Classroom Maestro uses two different methods for spelling notes. You can determine which method is used by checking or unchecking “Use Bass Note to Determine Chord Spelling” in the Display Options window. (You can access the Display Options window by holding down the Command key on a Mac or the Control key on a PC and then pressing the D key.)

If this box is unchecked, Classroom Maestro will spell the notes according to the key signature and the current major/minor modality. If you play a note that is not included in the current major or minor scale, Classroom Maestro will choose a particular note spelling based on the likelihood that the note in question is an alteration of a particular scale degree.

If you check this box, Classroom Maestro will use the rule mentioned above to spell the bass note and will then look for common chord intervals above the bass, and will spell the notes accordingly.

Most users get the results that they are looking for by checking this box.

NOTE: After entering a chord, you can cycle through all possible spellings of the chord by repeatedly pressing the E key. Alternatively, in Chord mode, you can enter a chord, freeze the display, and then target a particular note by playing it again. After that, you can repeatedly press the E key to cycle through various spellings of that one particular note

Classroom Maestro will not run on my Macintosh. How do I fix the problem?

You have an older version of Classroom Maestro, and your Mac is running OS X 10.7 or later.

The original Classroom Maestro was developed for older Macs and used a system software feature called “Rosetta” to operate on both older and new Mac hardware. Apple’s OS X 10.7 and later operating systems no longer support Rosetta.

Please log into your TimeWarp account and download a newer version of Classroom Maestro.

Issues when using ManyCam

A couple of users have reported issues, such as a flashing screen, when using Classroom Maestro together with ManyCam in an online lesson. ManyCam is a virtual camera application with a lot of cool features.

The screen-flashing problem is apparently solved by turning on the Hardware Acceleration feature of ManyCam. Details about Hardware Acceleration in ManyCam can be found here: https://help.manycam.com/knowledge-base/hardware-acceleration

Creative Uses of Classroom Maestro

How can I use Classroom Maestro during a long distance lesson?

Classroom Maestro works inside of TimeWarp’s Internet MIDI program. If you and a long distance student both have Internet MIDI and Classroom Maestro installed on your respective computers, you can use Internet MIDI to establish an Internet connection between your computer and your student’s computer.

Once you have established an Internet connection between your computers (and therefore between the keyboards that are connected to your computers), both you and the long distance student can access Classroom Maestro from within Internet MIDI. Either of you can play notes and thus control the display. The same information will be displayed on the staff and on-screen keyboard at both ends of the connection.

How can I use Classroom Maestro to conduct an examination—in person or over the Internet?

As mentioned above, Classroom Maestro can be used interactively over the Internet when combined with TimeWarp’s Internet MIDI program.

In either a local or long distance situation, you can ask a student to illustrate his/her understanding of note names, intervals, scales, and chords by playing the appropriate notes on the MIDI keyboard. The analysis feature can be turned on to confirm whether the student’s answer was right or wrong.

How can I use Classroom Maestro with a college piano pedagogy class?

Locate and download the Piano Pedagogy Technology Project Guide from the TimeWarp website. It contains 16 term projects for piano pedagogy students.