In July, music teacher Chris Gignac spent two days in a teacher training for early childhood music educators in Bethesda, MD. The workshop was presented by Lynn Kleiner, a music educator who has a music program for children ages 0-8 in southern California. Lynn not only teaches children's music classes herself but trains teachers for her program, Music Rhapsody.
The workshop focused on using songs as a basis for students becoming better singers, moving to music, playing instruments, learning pre-notation music reading, and having fun making music. Chris says, "The workshop was a hands-on, engaging experience in which we learned the activities by doing them – sitting or standing in a circle singing, creating a dance, playing xylophones on cue, or using props and storybooks as a visual piece to the music." The teaching method shared uses an Orff approach, which means children learn about music through making music and moving to it.
Chris came back with ideas and materials that will be appealing to our youngest learners at TPS. For example, she looks forward to introducing a singing/dancing/xylophone activity that complements Eric Carle's book A Very Busy Spider. Says Chris, "I came away from the training very excited to share new songs and activities with my students in hopes that they will develop a love for music." Here is the link to Lynn Kleiner's bio on her website.