What’s with the chives? Well, I’ve got “gardening” on the mind. Memorial Day comes this weekend, which means that it will be “safe” to plant your gardens here in Western Pennsylvania. Lately, I’ve been doing a lot of “Digging In” down at the studio, so it just made sense to start this post with a little bit of gardening…
Digging In? What does that mean?
Well, it all started with a May whirlwind of activity in the studio. This time of year is always a bit hectic for teachers, students, and well… just about everyone else that I know. Here’s a brief list of some things that happened in and around the studio in the past 21 days:
- Pianos were tuned! Hooray!
- A vocal student performed with the Greenville Symphony Orchestra
- Two sibling students were added to the schedule — Welcome!!
- New Student Interview Lessons — Can’t wait to start working with you all this summer!
- Workshops and Summer Camps Registration: Only 3 spots left in the Composition Workshop, 1 spot left in Music Blast Camp, and 6 spots left in the Voice & Movement workshop. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to sign up.
- We had a Spring Recital on Mother’s Day!
As most of you have probably noticed, it’s been a while since I added reviews or original materials to the blog. The above list only explains part of why I’ve been so silent here as of late. The studio schedule is buzzing with 37 full-time students right now, and I’ve also been busy trying to keep up with summer lesson sign-ups and workshop registrations… but that’s not all that I’ve been up to this month!
So why all the blog silence? What ELSE have I been doing?
I’ve been a busy bee getting to know all the new materials that we’ve been using in the studio. Over the past year, I’ve added so many new things to the studio — new music, new method books, new rhythm activities, new invoicing and scheduling systems, and tons of new apps! We have so many new things, that it’s been a real challenge to get to know the ins and outs of those things. So lately I’ve been spending a lot of my “non-studio time” getting to know all these new materials.
It’s just not enough to simply have new things, as teachers we need to also understand new things so that we can use them effectively with our students… after all, what good is a new resource, book, or tool if you don’t know how to use it properly? I’m sure there are a lot of teachers out there who understand where I’m coming from with this post. There are SO MANY resources out there right now, and if you spend any amount of time in the “teachers circuit” online, you might find yourself overwhelmed with possibilities.
Over the past month, I’ve made a concerted effort to “dig in” to these resources so that I can use them to their full potential. (Ok, so I haven’t *quite* gotten there with Quickbooks yet, but I’m trying!!) Here’s a short list of the resources that I’ve been spending time with over the past month:
- Quickbooks Online
- The Piano Pronto Method Series
- 4 new vocal anthologies – including Contemporary Musical Theatre for Teens: Young Men’s Edition Volume 1, Contemporary Broadway Vocal Duets, Kids’ Musical Theatre Collection – Volume 1, Alfred Broadway Presents! Kids’ Musical Theatre Anthology
- Rhythm Cups Explorations 2
- Piano Maestro Home Challenges
“Digging in” can take on many different forms. It can be something that you do actively and it can be something that you do passively. On the active side: sitting down at the piano and sight reading/singing new method books or vocal anthologies — this is one of my favorite ways to get to know new piano method books! On the passive side: making Spotify lists so that you can get familiar with new vocal duets and solos for your students.
… I have yet to figure out a passive way to get to know Quickbooks. If anyone has suggestions, let me know! 😉
Don’t worry, I haven’t given up on blogging, and you WILL get some new resources/reviews here in the future! I’m just in a bit of a dormant period while I get to know some of the new resources that I’m using. These resources will be integral to the summer programs that I’m running this year, and they will help me prepare for the 5 day Estill Voice Training that I’ll be attending at the end of June.
One “small” thing that should be out soon will be a set of Summer Assignment Sheets. You can check out my fall, winter, Valentine’s Day, and spring themed assignment sheets here. If anyone has any requests for specific summer-themed sheets, feel free to leave a comment below!
How are YOU “Digging In” this Spring? What do you plan on growing this summer in YOUR studio?
Stay Tuned — Be sure to SUBSCRIBE to the blog for future updates!