ETM took advantage of two school holidays to hold training sessions for teaching artists.
In November, on Election Day, teaching artists and interns convened at East Harlem's P.S. 155 for the first formal training workshop since the Teaching Artist Academy concluded in September. The morning was spent sharing successes and challenges that teaching artists had experienced in the first two months of school. Despite the challenges faced in the beginning (most notably, the difficulty of learning hundreds of students' names), most teaching artists had been enjoying their teaching experiences.
Teaching Artist Kim Garey presented a clinic on drum set and drum line activities for 6th-8th graders. In the months since this training, her techniques have been used with great success in several of ETM's partner schools. Teaching Artist Jennifer Greene also shared her time-tested methods for producing a fantastic winter concert.
On January 15th, Martin Luther King, Jr., Day, teaching artists met at P.S. 38, also in East Harlem, for additional training. Special guest Sherry Luchette, a music teacher and jazz bassist from Los Angeles, shared her jazz improvisation methods for grades K-2, including improvising with recorders and Orff instruments, and vocal improvisation games. Her ideas were met with a great deal of enthusiasm.
The teaching artists then watched video footage from the winter concerts and compared notes on productions and student ability. Director of Programs Stephen Herx also took time to reestablish the importance of the concepts of collaboration and integration in the music classroom.
More workshops will be held in the spring. In addition to these training sessions, ETM provides ongoing support and oversight, including on-site observations.