The Countdown is On!

The new teaching year begins on Tuesday and it has been a mad race to get everything ready by then. Bookkeeping has been postponed to contact my students’ families to confirm their lesson times (and yes, to see if they're still coming for lessons. You never know). The prize drawer and sticker tin are overflowing with the latest and greatest that's out there. All prizes have been inspected and approved of by my trusty assistant Maestro. I'm trying out a few new piano and theory books and had to buy them for planning purposes. While I was at the store, I perused through the clearance sections and found the funkiest rhythm puzzle. It was originally $35 and it was on sale for $5. When I saw it, I could picture myself clapping a simple rhythm to a young student and having him/her grab the appropriate foam pieces to create the pattern s/he heard. I also added a small set of cymbals, which the kids will fight over at group class.

I had coffee yesterday with a teaching colleague who specializes in Musikgarten and adult workshops. I had a brief introduction to Musikgarten at the Canadian Federation of Music Teachers' Associations' (CFMTA) national conference held in Calgary in July. Dr. Lorna Lutz Heyge, the President and co-founder of Musikgarten gave the clinic.

My colleague gave me a more in depth look at the curriculum and I must say I like it a lot. Musikgarten is an introductory music program for children aged 5 - 9 years. The curriculum is set up so the students learn music as they learned their mother tongue - by listening, babbling, using bigger sentences, storytelling and finally, reading. The group lessons are filled with singing, dancing and clapping. The kids don't even touch the keyboard until they have internalized the song.

I can't say that I am up for teaching the program but I will definitely recommend it to parents with young children. For more information, visit the Musikgarten website.

Well, my time is up here. The piano is calling me to run through some of the intermediate repertoire. I actually have to practice some of that stuff.

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