The purpose of this instrumental case study was to explore the perceptions and practices of four music teachers as they participated in a professional development community (PDC) to discuss and implement informal music learning practices. Participants met bimonthly as a PDC to discuss research articles on informal music learning, share student work, socialize with peers, and develop ideas to use in their classrooms. Data included video recordings of PDC meetings, audio recordings of semistructured interviews, in-school observations of informal music learning activities, field notes, and written artifacts; these were coded and analyzed for emerging themes. Three themes that emerged from the data included experiments and modifications, pedagogical practices, and finding value. The participants implemented a variety of activities using informal processes, which they developed by modifying ideas presented in research articles they read and lessons they taught previously. They used many pedagogical practices during informal activities, which fell on a continuum of teacher and student control and a continuum of teacher scaffolding. The participants found value in informal music learning because it provided a new avenue for them to help students develop independent musicianship. Exploring informal music learning in the PDC helped participants feel validated in using this new pedagogical approach. Implications for the use of informal music learning with younger students and suggestions for professional development are also discussed.

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