Monday, January 16, 2012

Update! (Or, Where in the World Have I Been?)

Well, hello again, blog! I am sorry to say that as soon as I began getting ready for my new high school choral position, I completely stopped updating this blog! It's hard to believe it's already been a half a year! Here we are, already half-way through January of 2012! It's amazing how time flies when you're having fun.

I don't know if you're into New Year's Resolutions, but it's something I try to do each year, and I attempt to make them attainable things in different areas of my life that need work. Several of my musical goals I'll list here: one of them is to update my blog regularly (that is, at least once per month) and also to get some songwriting done this year. I didn't do a whole lot of writing in 2011, and I miss it! So in 2012, I hope to tap back into my creative side and write at least 5 songs.

Now onto the update. Since my last post, I have started my new choral job and have already completed the first half of the school year. All I can say is that the cliche is true: nothing can prepare you for teaching like your first year! It has been a whirlwind!

First of all, I have some really talented students. They have totally upped the stakes for me. What I used to spend minutes on checking before I would teach, now I'm sure to study out to make sure I really, really know what I'm talking about! High school students can sniff a fake or a lie in an instant! But I am amazed at my students' abilities to learn music. I have each of my choir students five days a week, and I wouldn't have it any other way. We can really dive into the material, learn it well, and have some fun while doing so.

I am also proud to say that once-foreign words to me like All-County, FVA, ACDA, and MPA are no longer a major source of confusion for me. My motto this year has been to take every thing one step and one day at a time, while learning along the way. I can't believe how much I've learned in such a short period of time!

My students had the opportunity to audition for Disney World's Candlelight Production, which is a spectacular Christmas program that runs from the end of November through New Years at Epcot. We started working on the audition pieces probably around the first week of school. We sent in our audition dvd, and received word that we'd been accepted! Then came the really hard part of learning fifteen songs for the show, all of them SATB scores including Handel's "Hallelujah Chorus". On December 5th, I accompanied 48 of my high school choral students to Disney World and got to hear them sing in Candlelight! It was one of the proudest moments of my life and one of the coolest things I've ever done in Florida!

Finally, while settling into my new job as chorus teacher, I was observed by another teacher at my school, and given the great honor of Teacher of the Month for December! It made me so proud to know that my hard work is paying off and someone else is taking notice that I am trying to make a lasting difference in the lives of my music students.

That is an update on my little world. I will be sure to address many exciting singing topics this year such as auditioning, taking criticism, finding your voice part, and song-writing! It's good to be back! Please remember, if you have a voice question or comment, you can always post it to this blog! Happy New Year!

(This is a pic of me posing with the Golden Apple Award, for receiving Teacher of the Month at my school in January!)

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