“Tones sound, and roar, and storm about me until I have set them down in notes.”
— Ludwig van Beethoven
“Tones sound, and roar, and storm about me until I have set them down in notes.”
— Ludwig van Beethoven
I almost forgot to post a photo of all the freebies I took home from the NCKP. (I love freebies!)
Each day, there is an Exhibiter Showcase in the morning and late afternoon. These sessions often offer freebies of some the latest releases from major publishers, usually in a free tote bag. Here is a photo of the free music I took home with me:
The value of these books is nearly $200! That certainly helps defray the costs of attending a national-level conference, and it is fun to hear about the latest books and resources available.
The National Conference on Keyboard Pedagogy is awesome. I learned so much and it was wonderful to connect or re-connect with other teachers. The schedule is intense — there are sessions, master classes, recitals, teaching demonstrations, etc., scheduled throughout the day. At certain points in the schedule, you must choose between a handful of sessions to attend — and it is very difficult to make just one choice!
As you know, I blogged quite a few of my conference notes. I used my new iPad Mini to take notes. I really should have invested in one of those little keyboard case things, because typing with the on-screen keyboard was a bit tricky. I apologize about any typos you find in my notes — editing with the touch screen was not easy and auto-correct was also working against me. I have fixed some of the typos, but still have more editing to do.
Typos or no, I hope some of you enjoyed reading about some of the sessions I attended. You should know that reading my notes is nothing like being there in person, though. Start saving for NCKP 2015! ;)
In case you are interested, you can check out some of the handouts from the sessions here on the Francis Clark Center website. Some of the sessions were recorded and live-streamed — you can view those here.
This year at the conference, I made a point of taking more photos. At past conferences, I’ve returned home to realize I had only taken one or two. I did better this time!
Below is a photo of me with some colleagues: my cousin, Sarah; my friend from grad school, Loretta; my friend Yen-Lin from my local MTNA chapter; and my new friend Drema from Vancouver. This was taken in the hotel lobby. Continue reading “NCKP 2013 – Wrap-Up Post”
Sat 2013 July 27 @ 2:15pm – Building Firm Foundations for Music Literacy by Janna Olson.
Edwin Gordon is a music education researcher who began what is known as the Music Learning Theory (MLT). MLT help students gain audiation. It uses a brain friendly learning sequence.
Ms. Olson shared how MLT has changed her life. MLT helps give students an excellent music education, not just skills in piano playing.
(1) The process is more important than the performance. Audiation is the focus.
(2) Student motivation (immediate, not long term) and musical independence are the primary focuses.
(3) Everyone has musical aptitude. Aptitude is about potential. When you think about the things required to be a good pianist, they are largely non-musical. Concentration, focus, ability to memorize, grit, work ethic, discipline, etc.
Continue reading “NCKP 2013 (17) – Building Firm Foundations for Music Literacy by Janna Olson”
Sat 2013 July 27 @ 11:15am – Singing Through Your Instrument, by Scott Donald and Klondike Steadman.
Mr. Steadman began the Orpheus Academy of Music with the intention of being able to offer private and group classes for students and constant interaction between teachers.
Singing is so beneficial because it brings students joy and allows students to internalize the music before playing. Singing is also a helpful tool for teachers to be able to assess understanding.
Among many of the approaches and methods that teachers at the Orpheus Academy bring, the Kodaly approach is fairly central. It begins with listening, goes on to experience through kinesthetics or visuals, and ends with the presentation of a concept. Continue reading “NCKP 2013 (16) – Singing Through Your Instrument, by Scott Donald and Klondike Steadman”
Sat 2013 July 27 – Teaching Demonstration: It’s Only Natural: Planting the Seeds for Growth in Elementary Teaching, by Amy Glennon and Angela Triandafillou
Ms. Glennon and Ms. Triandafillou suggested that students are like seeds: we must provide the correct environment but we cannot force them to grow. They must grow themselves naturally.
What is the natural learning sequence? Sound, Feel, Sign, then Name. Go from the general to specific. The presenters showed a number of short video clips showing weekly group classes where students are learning concepts through this method.
One of the activities from the videos was called the “circuit activity.” Students walked like a tight-rope dance on Bass F to the piano, played Bass F, moved to the next station to play Bass F on the next piano, and then to the whiteboard on the table where the marked Bass F, etc.
Ms. Glennon and Ms. Triandafillou showed many more video examples demonstrating this natural learning sequence. It was a great session!
Fri 2013 July 26 @ 3:15 – Teaching Demonstration: Masterclass with Peter Mack.
The three students who played in this masterclass were winners of MTNA competitions. The first student, Katrina Jia, performed the Schumann Arabeske, Op. 18.
Dr. Mack first discussed how gesture is important for establishing the intended mood, even before playing a note. He demonstrated two different gestures for pieces he had in mind and asked the student to guess at the time period, composer, type of piece, and exact title of the piece. It was entertaining to hear the student guess each aspect nearly accurately, based on only the movement observed! The first was a Chopin Nocturne (the Eb major one) and the second was a movement from a Prokofiev sonata.
Then, he suggested that the student consider how to plan to play the theme each time it appears throughout the piece: it could perhaps have different voicing each time. In a piece where a theme is repeated, a teacher should be able to ask, “Play the theme the first time” or “Play the theme the third time” and hear each version. Variety is a wonderful thing. Your favorite food (ice cream) isn’t quite as good anymore after having it five days in a row! Continue reading “NCKP 2013 (14) – Teaching Demonstration: Masterclass with Peter Mack”
Fri 2013 July 26 @ 2:15pm – Teaching Piano Using the Dalcroze Method, by Seung-Ji Ryu.
Seung-Ji Ryu is the director of the Hansei Dalcroze Center and is Professor of piano pedagogy at Hansi University in Korea.
Dalcroze believed in connecting movement and music. He was influenced by Laban’s ideas about movement.
Ms. Ryu asked us to clap the rhythm of a melody. She encouraged us to clap musically, thinking about the relationship between time-space-energy.
Dalcroze worked with Clareid, a psychologist, to realize that students focus better with games.
Example of a game used in eurhythmics classes: As the teacher improvises using a simple tune such as “Are You Sleeping?” students listen carefully and respond. When students hear high sounds, they must clap along and when they hear low sounds, they must stamp their feet. Continue reading “NCKP 2013 (13) – Teaching Piano Using the Dalcroze Method, by Seung-Ji Ryu.”
Fri 2013 July 26 – PEDx3 Sessions
Session #1 – Opening Recital; then “Pirates and the Importance of ‘Lisztening,'” by Jarrod Radnich.
Mr. Radnich began by performing a few of his arrangements and compositions, including the Harry Potter “Hedwig’s Theme,” a beautiful new Christmas arrangement of “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen,” his signature arrangement of the “Pirates at the Caribbean” theme (of course!), and “Don’t Stop Believin'”. Mr Radnich is obviously a very talented composer/arranger – his music is so pianistic, yet orchestral.
Then, Mr. Radnich began his presentation. Mr. Radnich’s philosophy is that students can play difficult repertoire if they are inspired. He showed a video example from a young boy on YouTube who hated piano practice and then became greatly inspired by Mr. Radnich’s YouTube video of “Pirates.” Next, he showed a series of similar videos by other students who became similarly inspired and motivated. Continue reading “NCKP 2013 (12) – PEDx3 Sessions”
Th 2013 July 25 – Teaching Demonstration: Magic Not Required! How Planning and Persistence Produce Young Pianists, by Catharine Lysinger and featuring 6th grade student Natalie Grimes and mother Rhonda.
Broad Teaching Goals:
– To become nearly dispensable.
– Empower students to learn effectively.
– Build confidence for preparation and performance. Frequent performance allows this.
Long term goals include technique and theory through the Texas MTA programs. Repertoire is learned from various periods and performed. Events: Monthly performance classes (by memory), recitals twice a year, theory exam, festivals.
Th 2013 July 25 @ 2:15
Beyond Mozart, Schubert, and Brahms: Forgotten Gems for Piano 4-Hands, by Steven Harlos with Laura Melton, Carolyn True, and Bradley Beckman
After Mozart and his contemporaries, composers began producing a tidal wave of piano duet compositions. It was a fantastic pastime of amateur pianists.
The program of lesser known piano duets included:
Mvt 1 from Sonata in G, Op. 23, by Woldemar Bargiel
Scherzo in E minor, Op. 91 No. 1, by Philipp Scharwenka
Mvt 3 and 4 from “Silhouetten,” Op. 62, by Adolf Jensen
Sonata in D major, by Gaetano Donizetti
Mvt 1 from “Traumbilden,” Op. 48 Heft I, by Robert Fuchs
Mvt 3 and 4 from “Neue Ungarische Tanze,” Heft II, by Heinrich Hofmann
Th 2013 July 25 @ 11:15
A Teacher’s Companion for All Methods, by Craig Sale and Judith Jain
This session was all about the essential role of preparation. Most method books do a great job with presentation, but not necessarily with preparation. Often, we as teachers end up being “turn the page and see what is next” teachers.” This session will discuss how we can easily prepare students for new concepts.
If we teach how children learn best, we will not encounter missing knowledge in students later. How students learn best through concrete experiences through the senses. We begin with the sound, proceed to the feel, then the sign, an lastly the name. Aural, kinesthetic, and then visual. Always proceed from the “known” to the “unknown.”
Mr. Sale demonstrated this with a student by playing two different kinds of sounds (legato and staccato) and asking the student to describe what they heard. Then, they experienced making those sounds, seeing the symbol, and then learning the name.
Continue reading “NCKP 2013 (9) – A Teacher’s Companion for All Methods, by Craig Sale and Judith Jain”
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