Friday, February 10, 2012

Pre-TMEA thoughts

Tomorrow I leave for San Antonio for the annual Texas Music Educators Association clinic and conference. This is one the best of it's kind in the nation and highly effective in helping music educators, young and old alike, learn amazing techniques that they can take back to their classroom and use.

I first arrived at this conference in 1999 when I was in the ATSSB All-State Band. Although most of my time was spent in rehearsals for the All-State Band, I did have some free-time each of the 3 days I was there to venture my way down to the San Antonio Convention Center and see the amazing exhibits and excitement just booming from the building. I already knew I wanted to teach band at this point in my life but this just sealed the deal and was icing on the cake. I also attended this conference in 2001 when I was selected for the ATSSB All-State Band a 2nd time.

When I arrived at OU and the spring semester of my freshman year arrived I was anxious to be able to go to TMEA as a college student and attend sessions specifically geared towards upcoming music educators. Unfortunately, OU encouraged and in some cases required all music ed college students to attend the Oklahoma Music Educators Association Convention instead. I attended OMEA all 4 years while was in college but during my sophomore and junior years at OU I applied to be a housing chaperon for the ATSSB All-State Band. This allowed me to go to San Antonio for TMEA and attend numerous clinics for college students. It was fabulous being able to go to clinics about teaching music and band. This really "lit my fire" and pushed me to get my degree faster. In fact in part of TMEA I was able to turn a 5 year degree plan into 4 years.

Now OMEA was not near what TMEA is. They really did try and as the years passed and I attended OMEA more and more, it began to get better and attract better clinicians and exhibitors but they were still only about 10% of what TMEA is. Often times, OMEA would bring in clinicians that would be local and good but didn't bring the "draw" that TMEA did.

I am so excited to be able to go to TMEA this year. I have several clinics about teaching elementary music I am planning on attending. I am excited about these because while I Was teaching at Grove and going to OMEA I would always attend the band clinics. It has been years since I have attended an elementary music clinic. I am excited to get new material and new ideas to use in my classroom. I am hoping I can go to TMEA and reclaim the passion and fire I used have in years passed. Even though I am teaching elementary music and would prefer to be teaching band right now, I do still have a passion for teaching in general and I have let this passion and fire dwindle a little in my frustrations of this year. I hope and pray TMEA can relight this fire and get me closer to where I need to be.

I will follow-up with a post-TMEA thoughts blog next week.

God is good... ALL THE TIME!

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