So as we bid farewell to 2015, let it serve as an inspiration for 2016. MUSIK teachers should feel encouraged to continue moving forward in professional development; practice your instrument, learn new repertoire, read new research, but most importantly, keep listening to your young musicians. It is our students that should inspire and drive our educational practices. It is our duty to capture imagination and teach the whole child. We should utilize all learning modalities and make cross-curricular connections to deepen understanding. We must practice equity, kindness, and patience. The music room should be a safe space, promoting creativity and cooperation. We should learn when to let go of control and let the children take over. Which means sometimes, we should spend those five extra minutes on a favorite song or game – it may be exactly what they need that day. In June, I had the wonderful opportunity to study under Berta Hickox, a master teacher and member of the Kodály Educators of Eastern Pennsylvania chapter, and I’d like to leave you with this idea that she shared. “We teach children, not lessons.”
Thank you for joining Maryland United Specialists in Kodály in your journey towards excellence. It is such a pleasure to see first-hand that spark that that fuels your pedagogical passions. I can’t wait to see you at our next workshop on Saturday, January 30, 2016. Happy New Year!
MUSIK Chapter President
Program Director, American Kodály Institute
Education Director, Children’s Chorus of Maryland
General Music Instructor, Montgomery County Public Schools