Thursday, April 21, 2011

A Song Story for Earth Day

Literacy is a big focus in our schools right now, partly due to MiBLSi: Michigan's Integrated Behavior and Learning Support Initiative.  However, I have always enjoyed integrating literacy into my music therapy sessions and incorporate a number of "song stories" throughout the year.

Earthsong: Based on "Over in the
Endangered Meadow"
This week I have been using one of my favorite song stories: Earthsong by Sally Rogers, illustrated by Melissa Bay Mathis.  This book depicts Sally Roger's song Over in the Endangered Meadow, which is written to a traditional tune (music notation is included on the back cover) and introduces a number of animals which are, or have been, endangered.  It also includes additional factual information about each animal in a notes section at the back of the book.  I use the book and song as an introduction to discussing Earth Day, including why we celebrate Earth Day and what we can do to protect the Earth.  Both counting and rhyming are included in the book, so it can also be used to develop those academic skills.  Additionally, the pictures are colorful and vivid, which helps capture and maintain attention.

What ways do you utilize music with literacy?  Do you have any favorite song stories or Earth Day interventions?   

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

A Day at the HOME Office!

Really? A day at the HOME office?!? Considering I have been on the GO lately, it has been a long time since I've been able to say that! This week is spring break for both schools I currently service, so I actually have some time to catch up on all the other projects I have going on right now. These are also the projects which have kept me from having time to post much lately.  These include...

Graduate school: I am taking a class on music curriculum through Michigan State.  For both my music therapy certification and my teaching certification, I must participate in continuing education.  This class will complete the number of graduate credits I need to be able to re-new my MI Provisional Teaching Certification.  It also counts towards the 100 CMTE - that's Continuing Music Therapy Education - credits I need to re-new my MT-BC at the end of this year.  This week I will be working on a methodology paper focusing on Dalcroze Eurhythmics and my final project, which is designing a curriculum for a music class of my choosing.  My curriculum project is targeted at secondary adapted general music.

GLR Conference: I attended the 2011 Great Lakes Region of AMTA conference in Wisconsin at the end of March.  It was a great conference and I hope to post some pictures on Facebook during this week.  Additionally, I am the program chair for the 2012 GLR conference - which will be held in Grand Rapids next April - so I am starting to get matters in order for that project.

MMT: I am the newsletter editor for Michigan Music Therapists.  I spent quite a bit of time reworking the newsletter for this spring's edition.  I am glad to have that project accomplished and plan to share some of the articles in a series on here.

Administrative Affairs: There are so many administrative issues that go into running a business.  This week I need to have everything in order to get my taxes done.  This is a project that I do not enjoy and tend to procrastinate each year, but, alas, it can only be pushed aside for so long!  Additionally, CODA MTS will be a vendor in a couple upcoming events, so I need to make sure we have all the appropriate marketing materials prepared and ready to go.

Renovating: As many of you know, I also have a passion for real estate and my partner and I are in the home stretch of finishing up our most recent project.  There will definitely be some tiling going on this week!

Who else is on spring break this week? How are you spending your extra time? I hope it is warmer than 40 degrees where you are! (Brrrr, Michigan!)