I was really looking forward to attending the MusicEdConnect 2019 conference! From past experience I know the content will be great & the presenters approachable. My students also know (& lightly teased me) that next week I will be back in the studio with many ideas & an infectious excitement!
If you haven’t attended a MusicEdConnect conference before, I would highly recommend checking it out. Not only is the cost very reasonable, but attendees have access to the videos & content until the end of 2019. Finally a conference that works around YOUR schedule!
Below is an overview of the MusicEdConnect sessions.
AKA: Why you should attend the conference!
Working with adults
This is a demographic that is more & more interested in music lessons. Dr. Pamela Pike had a great overview of the benefits, challenges & thoughts on teaching adults. Each demographic of adults has a different need & focus. So, clumping all adults to together is almost as bad as pretending they need the same approach as the children in our studios. Being patient, understanding, positive & flexible with our adult students ensures they are able to balance life with the realities of taking piano lessons. I know I’ve had my twins sleeping on my lap as babies while I practiced!
How to teach online
Bradley Sowash had another engaging workshop on the basics on teaching online. Everything from the why to the nuts & bolts of actually teaching online were covered. I especially liked seeing his teaching set up & how he used simple tricks to get the most out of his equipment. If you are interested in teaching online or offering make-up lessons using live video calls, I would highly recommend this session.
Click it to stick it
What does dog or dolphin training have to do with teaching students? Well, it turns out clickers work on us humans as well! Perhaps you find yourself talking more than listening in lessons. Or, perhaps you want students to think through their repetitions more. A clicker approach meets both needs.
Gifted & talented are dangerous words
Samantha Coates kept every attendee engaged with thought-provoking question & stories throughout her workshop. Her argument for doing away with “gifted” & “talented” as labels was compelling. And, her encouragement to instil a growth mindset in our students was wonderful to hear.
Women who dared to compose
George Litterst & Stella Sick gave us a wonderful end to our first day of the conference. Their entire presentation took us on a journey of female composers from the 12th through to the 20th century. Filled with stories of determination to success in a male dominated profession & beautiful musical excerpts, the only downside was that I had forgotten to get a cup of tea first. (This was by no means George or Stella’s fault.) Honestly, I could have happily spent the rest of my afternoon listening to the music they presented!
Creative Marketing for Independent Teachers
Davis Dorrough & Angela Marshall were able to grow their studio from 0-60 students in 6 months. Their session went through the marketing strategies that worked, the ones that didn’t work as well & how to get the most of your efforts. If you are looking to increase your studio size, this session will be sure to help you a lot.
Helping Students Perform
The real title of this session by Thomas Lanners was “Helping Students Develop the Courage to Command the Stage”. As someone who suffers from performance anxiety, it was great to get strategies not only for myself, but my students as well! I really liked Thomas’ process for preparing his students for performances with a scaffold approach.
Efficient Business Practices
Davis & Angela were back for a session that, in some ways, picked up where their first session left off. Once you have a thriving studio the administrative side can become overwhelming. They had so many great ideas to increase efficiency & what to focus on for the best use of your time.
Maybe you didn’t know about this conference. Or, perhaps you didn’t have time to attend the live sessions.
MusicEdConnect is set up for the working studio teacher. Yes, there are live sessions & I highly recommend attending live if you can. But, having video access to any workshop you missed makes it well worth the cost. Including additional webinars that go beyond the live sessions? It’s hard to say no.