Thursday, May 22, 2014

Summer Professional Goals - workshops at CCM, TPT, and More!

My last post was about how I am helping my students to practice over the summer, but this one is my professional goals for the summer.  This will be the first summer where I don't have anything official planned yet for Professional Development.  For the past 4 summers I have been completing my Masters and then studying in Hungary to become a better teacher, but this year will be focused more on using the knowledge of Elementary Teaching that I already have to create new and better year plans, daily plans, and Teachers Pay Teachers resources (which of course are things I would and will use in my classroom next year!) Comment below with your professional goals- or tips to help me reach mine!

1.  Attend at least one Kodaly Class.  While I will not be doing an Elementary class this summer, as I have the past 4 years, I am planning on attending a two week intensive workshop at the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music in July called "Kodaly in the Choral Classroom"  After having completed my Elementary Levels AND taken elementary courses in Hungary last year, I decided this year would be a good time to get more info on how to implement the Kodaly method into my Chorus Classes for 5th and 6th grade.  This course is taught by Eva Floyd and I am super excited for it. We got to hang out a little in Hungary last summer and I attended one of her workshops so this I know that this class will be amazing.  You can get more info on the class here.  I will be sure to post frequently during those two weeks with all the great ideas I get!  CCM is also offering Intro to Kodaly courses, as well as 2 weeks of Solfege bootcamp!

2.  Retrieve (or make master copies of) songs that I used this year or have learned in workshops recently but have not gotten into my index system yet.  I use i Retreival and I love it! 

3.  Year plan for all grades next year.  I have a basic year plan with rhythmic and melodic elements, but I want to get more specific with other music terms and when to teach them (ex. 1st and 2nd ending, fermata, repeat sign, articulations like staccato and legato and accent, etc.).  Once the sequence is planned down, I want to move down to month by month teaching and maybe even start planning lessons.  I tend to get caught up during the year on rhythmic and melodic elements and sometimes forgot about other important things like other musical symbols that are key when reading music!

4.  Make MANY more TPT files.  I have a few up but have been pretty busy lately (you may have noticed the lack of posts since spring break).  I want to do basic solfa and rhythm files like: I Have Who Has, Bingo, and bundles for rhythmic and melodic elements with song slides, mystery chant slides, etc.  Once I have those established I hope to get more creative.  I also hope to update those files I have up there by scanning in my Retrievals for the songs used in each file so that buyers are sure of the versions I am using for each song. 

5.  Read and review many of the Kodaly and Orff resources I have acquired this year. I need to read Kodaly Today, and just got a bunch of Jill Trinka books that I have used a bit but want to go through with a fine -tooth comb.  I also just got a new music notation software called FORTE that I have been playing around with and I plan to review that soon too!  Lots of great features I have seen so far. 

Finally- aside from all this professional stuff I need to find time to plan and prepare for my December Wedding, I will have rehearsals for a community theater production AND a 10hr a week summer job! Yay!   I will be busy this summer, but I wouldn't have it any other way.  I was worried before I found out about the Kodaly class in July that I would be bored at home- but the class is right in the middle of my break- the perfect time to re-energize my summer work! Don't forget to comment with your professional goals or tips!

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

In SUMMER- summer practice packets

This year I decided that for each grade I would make a summer fun packet for them to use to practice all things music in the coming months.  I have a few weeks left of school (our last day is June 2) and have 1st grade finished, with 2 and 4 close behind.  Hopefully 3, 5 and 6 will be done by the end of the week!  Each packet is scanned and sent to parents via a dropbox link where there is not only the packet, but also music activities we have done on the SMARTboard this year.  I have also included a list of favorite apps, websites and more.

For each grades packet, I have copied my Retrievals (master copies) of all songs learned, worksheet students have done, rhythm practice sheets, solfa practice sheets, as well as vocab sheets.  These may be "color by note", flashcards, fill in the blank worksheets, vocab word searches, etc.  Many of my worksheets I got from Teachers Pay Teachers.  Love that site!

I made a fun bulletin board (again loosely related to FROZEN, as my last one was) titled "IN SUMMER" where this information is posted along side pictures of OLAF. There are pockets at the bottom for 1 copy of each packet so kids can look through before they print at home. Along with the pockets to preview the take-home packets,  the board gives many ideas on how to practice songs and music vocab over the summer, including: 

~Teach friends and family music songs and games
~Write a song or musical
~Go to a music camp (I also give info on music camps on the Board)
~Sing music songs from the packet on Rhythm, Solfa, and Words
~Test your brain by isolating a word or rhythm and either sing ONLY that element oreverything BUT that element
~Complete some of the music worksheets in the packet
~Play music games online or on your IPAD (favorite websites and APPS are listed)
            Rhythm Cats
            do-re-mi 1-2-3

My students are actually really excited about these and I have gotten great response from 1st grade parents so far.  I plan to make them this year, and then just adjust next year if we move at a different pace.