This blog was inspired by another collaborative blog, called "Blog Hoppin'" (at imbloghoppin.blogspot.com.) We thought it would be great to have a site just like this, dedicated to the Kodály philosophy. So the Kodály Corner was born!
The idea of the blog is this: at least twice a week, a Kodály-inspired teacher will post a blog about something that could help you in your music classroom. We started the blog with Aileen Miracle, Amy Abbott, and Lindsay Jervis, and so far, have added five more collaborators to the list! Today, we'd like to introduce you to the three of us...you will meet the other teacher bloggers soon!
So you can get to know us better, we are answering the following questions:
1.) Tell us a little bit about yourself
2.) Where and what do you teach?
3.) How long have you been teaching?
4.) Where did you do your Kodály levels?
5.) Which Kodály-inspired teacher has been the most inspiring to you?
6.) What is your favorite Kodály levels memory?
7.) What is your favorite teaching memory?
During my first year of teaching, I knew I enjoyed what I was doing, but felt like something was missing. I researched masters programs in music education, and found Capital University's Kodály program, where a college friend had already started taking levels. She gushed about how great the program was, and sold me on it (and luckily, the masters program had just begun at Capital!) Sitting in my first day of class at Capital, I knew it would be life-changing, and of course, it has been!
2.) Where and what do you teach? In Olentangy Local Schools, which is about half an hour north of Columbus. I teach K-5 music, 5th grade band, and 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade choir. I started teaching at my elementary school when it first opened, and it is such an amazing place to work!
3.) How long have you been teaching? 15 years...I can't believe it's been that long!
4.) Where did you do your Kodály levels? At Capital University in Columbus; I took level III at the Kodály Institute in Kecskemét
5.) Which Kodály-inspired teacher has been the most inspiring to you? I have had so many amazing teachers, so it is hard to pick, but I will say Julie Swank. She was the first person to open my eyes to how amazing this philosophy can be!
6.) What is your favorite Kodály levels memory? Studying in Kecskemét, Hungary, at the Kodály Institute was so incredible...taking in the Hungarian culture, listening to the remarkable musicianship of Hungarian children...I am so glad I was able to experience that, even if only for three weeks!
7.) What is your favorite teaching memory? Wow, so many to choose from! I feel so blessed to go to work every day and sing and play with my students. Every Friday morning, before school, I direct a third, fourth, and fifth grade choir. I am often groggy (as I don't have time to drink coffee until after choir!) and with a 16-month-old who sometimes wakes in the middle of the night, I need a boost of energy! There have been several rehearsals, though, that the students have sung so beautifully and joyfully, with huge smiles on their faces, that I get more than enough energy I need for the day. It is even better when I see students skipping out of the room, thanking me for choir, and still singing. I am so happy to help bring that joy to students' lives--the same joy that music has given me!
I am happily married to my best friend, who also comes from a family of teahcers. In fact, I had both of my in-laws as teachers in high school and my husband and I were in high school band together but didn't start dating until 8 years after we graduated. We have two amazing kids, Noah and Hannah. They both attend my school and it's so much fun having them in music class!
2.) Where and what do you teach? My first three years of teaching were in Salem, OR and for the past 13 years I have taught in the St. Vrain Valley School District, with 10 years in Longmont and the last 3 in Erie (where we live)
3.) How long have you been teaching? This is my 16th year teaching music
4.) Where did you do your Kodály levels? Portland State (all four levels) and Colorado State (levels II & III.) I have certification from both.
5.) Which Kodály-inspired teacher has been the most inspiring to you? Susan Brumfield. She was my pedagogy teacher for 4 years and I still email her all the time. She coached me through teaching level II last year!
6.) What is your favorite Kodály levels memory? Performing Susan's arrangement of No Time at one of our PSU concerts, and Jill Trinka starting it as a solo with dulcimer accompaniment. Still gives me goose bumps!
7.) What is your favorite teaching memory? There are so many! I love those "Ah ha!!!" moments, when students share how they taught their parents or grandparents their songs from music and how they all sang them together as a family, when they take what they've learned in music class and applied it to something else or built on their knowledge. I love seeing the kids play the singing games that they learned in music outside on the play ground. And I love it when the younger siblings come into music already knowing the songs because their older sibling loves the songs so much that they sing them "all the time" at home.
2.) Where and what do you teach? I live in Wichita, KS and am currently teaching Pre-K through 5th grade music in one of the suburb school districts.
3.) How long have you been teaching? This is my fourth year teaching.
4.) Where did you do your Kodály levels?4 I did all three Kodály Levels at Wichita State University and am currently working towards my Masters in Music Education 5.) Which Kodály-inspired teacher has been the most inspiring to you? There are two Kodaly teachers who got me started on the right track, and without them, I would never be where I am today. Much thanks and love goes to Leigh Ann Mock Garner and Jo Kirk! 6.) What is your favorite Kodály levels memory? Solfege classes with Gabor 6.) What is your favorite Kodály levels memory? Several favorite teaching moments come to mind. I LOVE when you are presenting a concept and you can see it "click" and the students say "OH! This is...." another favorite moment happened last year right after our evening performance of our 2nd and 3rd grade program. One of my 2nd grades went yelling down the sidewalk at the top of his lungs, "THIS IS THE BEST NIGHT OF MY LIFE!". I will never forget that.
For more information about Aileen, Amy, and Lindsay--including our bios, please see the About Us page. We are very excited to be able to share the joys of the Kodály philosophy with you! Stay tuned to meet more of our bloggers soon!