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Starting Out Right: Beginning Band Pedagogy is the only complete resource for organizing, planning, and teaching beginning woodwind, brass, and percussion students. The book covers every aspect of teaching beginning band students from the first sounds on the instruments through the first full-band performances. It is the only comprehensive reference that offers step-by-step guidelines for teaching each beginning band instrument, as well as organizing and running a successful beginning band program. Based on the public school teaching experience of the author, the book is designed for use in undergraduate methods and pedagogy classes as well as for clinics and workshops at the undergraduate and graduate levels. This book is also designed to be a reference for the many novice teachers who lead beginning bands or those teachers whose expertise is not in the band realm.

While the focus of the book is on teaching beginning band, much of the book can be of use to band instructors at any grade level. The book is divided into several parts, which cover the sound-to-sign-to-theory approach to teaching musical literacy; child development as it relates to teaching music; recruiting and retaining students; developing fundamental sounds and skills on each woodwind, brass, and percussion instrument; teaching students to read tonal and rhythmic music notation; and selecting and rehearsing beginning band solo, ensemble, and full-band music. The book also addresses curriculum design, scheduling, and staffing of band programs. Ideas about managing student records, inventory, and equipment are also given special attention.

Written in a casual narrative style, the book features real-world examples of how the principles in the book might be applied to actual teaching situations. Another special feature of the book is a set of early field-experience application exercises. Starting Out Right guides readers as they explore a comprehensive individual and ensemble approach to teaching each woodwind, brass, and percussion instruments.