Before you start gearing up for another year of teaching, take some time to do a little professional development before the summer is over! Today I am sharing 5 professional development activities to put on your "to-do" list that will give you the opportunity to recharge, reflect, and re-energize your studio for the coming year.
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Attending a pedagogy or repertoire workshop is a great way to refresh your teaching toolbox for the coming year. Here are a few places you might look for online and in-person workshop opportunities:
- MTNA (Music Teachers National Association) offers monthly online webinars on a variety of topics. Archives of past webinars are also available on their website HERE.
- NCKP (The National Conference on Keyboard Pedagogy) offers webinars, video courses, as well as a biennial, in-person summer conference that kicks off at the end of July this year. Read more about NCKP's offerings on their website HERE.
- Check your local music teachers association to see if they have any educational programs planned for this summer.
- Check your local music store to see if they will be offering workshops highlighting pedagogical repertoire this summer. This is a great way to get acquainted with new-to-you repertoire for the coming year!
2. Attend a concert.
Nothing recharges your creative batteries like attending a live concert. Whether you attend a classical piano concert or a rock show, attending a concert can help you to re-connect with your love of music and offer inspiration for the upcoming year of teaching and performing.
3. Explore a new-to-you composer.
Summer is a great time to explore music by composers you may not yet have taught yet in your studio. Here are a few resources that can help you discover new works:
- The University of Iowa's Pedagogy Project YouTube channel is a great resource for browsing pedagogical music for students of all ages, with video performances of thousands of pieces that you can view HERE.
- The Creative Piano Teacher YouTube channel is another great resource for recordings of pedagogical works. Check out their channel HERE.
- Amie Webster of Motif Music Studios highlights the music of contemporary pedagogical composers and shares insightful teaching tips on her YouTube channel HERE.
4. Update your studio policy sheet.
Make sure your policy sheet is in tip-top shape before the new school year! Read my article on writing the perfect studio policy sheet HERE.
5. Make a list of your "successes and messes" from the last school year.
What worked well for you in your studio last year? What pieces, activities, or events did you and your students particularly enjoy? What caused you the most frustration in your studio last year, and what can you do to change it?
Take some time this summer to evaluate what worked well for you and your students, and what didn't, so you can plan accordingly to make the coming year the best one ever for your studio!
What do you think? What activities do you have planned to recharge your batteries before the new year of teaching begins? Are there any professional development resources that you have found helpful? I'd love to hear from you in the comments!