Last weekend I was able to go to the Texas Music Education Association Conference down in San Antonio. I've been a couple times before, and it's always fun and you hear some really cool, fun ideas to use in your classroom. But this year was the first year that I went as a teacher!
It definitely felt a lot different going as a teacher instead of a college student just enjoying the experience. When I would go to a session, I could really picture my students and think of how they would respond to different activities and whether or not that would be something I would like to do with them. Of course, sometimes you just go to so many good workshops that there are too many ideas and you leave a little overwhelmed... I did feel a little overwhelmed, but in a good way. It made me excited for the rest of the year and what the possibilities could be for the years to come!
So this is how TMEA works. You get this huge booklet of all the workshops that are happening. It includes all things band, choir, orchestra, elementary, and college. From "African-American children's games" to "how to pick the right music stand for your band". Personally, I think that last one sounds atrociously boring! But it's not just one session for you an hour. It's more like, ok, now you have to decide between these 3 really good ones which you one you are going to. Every hour. For 3 days. (It's awesome, and totally nerdy.)
So they bring in clinicians from all over the state and country. The best of the best. And they can talk about whatever they are successful and passionate about. They bring in some "special speakers" or whatever they call them. Those are the people that are usually really, really good and you should probably go to one, if not all of their sessions.
(This is John Jacobson. If you don't know who he is, he's the "double dream hands" guy. If you don't know what that means, go youtube that video right now. I'm serious. You need to know how seriously nerdy some people are at this place. And as much as his overly hyper-active self annoys me, I had to go to his session because he has a lot of good programs and I have to do programs, sooo yeah. Anyway, just youtube him, ok!?) But all those ladies were just up and dancing the whole time. I just sat. And tried not to judge.
Anyway, so on Wednesday I left school a little early and headed down to SA. Got myself all registered for the convention and I was SUPER excited because the President of TMEA always selects a concert for that evening. Well, the concert to start off the TMEA weekend was the Vienna Boys Choir! In case you didn't know, I had the amazing opportunity to see them in Vienna, Austria last year and I just fell in love with them! So I was excited to see them again in all their adorable glory.
This was the seat I was able to snag!
When they came out I could recognize some of them from Vienna and that made me smile and feel like I totally knew them way better than anyone else in that room. We're like best friends! Well, they did not disappoint. Honestly, they sounded better than when I heard them in Austria. They gave us 2 encores, 1 of them being "We are the World", which I also heard when they were in Austria. It's fun to hear them sing in English because that's not their first language, so you can hear a little bit of their German accent in their singing. Makes me think of all those Italian, French, German, Russian, etc, songs I had to sing in college and how people probably cringed at my bad accent!
Besides TONS of incredible workshops to choose from, there are hundreds of exhibits to explore! I probably spent way to much money, but surprisingly my school is paying me back for all of it!!! :D (and they wouldn't even get my a sub!)
And that's only half of one side of one of the 2 exhibit halls! It's insane!
So people can kinda go nutso in there...
And of course there are TONS of concerts to go to. I saw one of my friends from college and he only goes to concerts. I went to a couple of elementary concerts, 1 choir, 1 Orff (instrument) ensemble. They were both incredible. Also saw this harp ensemble. Love me some harp!
So I came back with a lot of knowledge, good ideas, programs for next year, 1 elephant hat, 1 frog hat, tons of free music, 4 new recorders, and plenty of notes! It was good seeing my parents too for that weekend. :) Love you mom and dad!
It was kind of funny because on Thursday night I called Mike and I was talking about how nerdy so many of "these people" are and that he needs to come one year just to see all the craziness. Meanwhile, he is waiting in line for the 3-D new and improved Star Wars midnight showing... so I guess we were both doing very nerdy things that we enjoyed. ;)