Archive for the “News and Views” Category
It’s hard to believe that the year is over and that I’m not coming back to Landings next year. It really hit me this morning, especially when I found out that my school email account has been closed. So, if you want to contact me and you aren’t on Facebook, my email is firstname.lastname@example.org.
I hope you all have a wonderful summer. I’m going to be taking it kind of easy for the next few weeks, although I’ll still be busy. It will be the standard summer stuff for me–doctor’s appointments, cleaning projects around the house, etc. I’ll also probably be out on some long walks to get myself in shape for hiking in Italy. So if you see me climbing the hills at Okeeheelee Park, you’ll know why.
Stay in touch and let me know how your summer is going. Send me pictures and I’ll post them here, at least for as long as the school district lets me keep the blog going.
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I cannot believe how wonderful last night’s concert was! I am still not sure my feet are touching the ground! Everyone sounded so amazing, but the outpouring of love was overwhelming. There are no words to express my thanks.
I hope some of you will send me pictures and/or video from last night. Those are memories I will treasure the rest of my life. I want to all to know that I will miss each and every one of you. But I also know that those of you in sixth and seventh grade will be in good hands with Ms. Morton. She has made me promise to come back and help, so you haven’t seen the end of me! And, in two weeks, when I’m no longer your music teacher at school, if you are interested in taking private voice lessons, I can take you as a student. I’m not allowed to do that while you are in my class.
And I will keep this blog going as long as the school district lets me. Since this site is supported by the school district, I don’t know if I’ll be able to continue. If not, I’ll start blogging somewhere else, to let you know what I’m doing and for you to keep me updated on what is happening in your lives. And, in the meantime, we have two more weeks!
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Well, not the news exactly. There is an article in the current issue of Wellington–The Magazine about our 25th anniversary celebration here at school. There is a picture of Concert Chorus singing the national anthem. You can see the picture here. I wasn’t able to copy the picture to use it as part of the post. Somebody needs to help me with my tech skills!
There are only 19 days of school left. And my daughter’s wedding is three weeks from tomorrow. You are all charged with helping keep Mrs. P. from going absolutely crazy!
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I’m not sure why I have gone so long without blogging. It may have been because, with Ms. Morton teaching, we didn’t have some of the class discussions that tend to trigger blog posts. It may be that I’ve been a bit distracted, since a lot of my spare time has been taken up with the arrangements for my daughter’s wedding, which will take place before the end of school. Whatever the reason, it’s time to write again.
The last day of school for all of you is June 6th, which is six weeks from yesterday. That’s not that far off, is it? And the last day of school for me, forever, is June 7th. I am looking forward to retiring, but I will definitely miss all of you. But I know that it’s the right time for me to do this, and now that Ms. Bennett has hired Ms. Morton to be your teacher next year, I know that I am leaving you in good hands. And I will be around. I told Ms. Morton that I’m not going to be here looking over her shoulder, but if she has questions or needs help with anything, I will be glad to help.
Between now and the end of the year, however, we have a lot of work to do. Here is a list of upcoming performances:
National Junior Honor Society induction ceremony: May 8th. This is a handbell performance.
Fifth grade articulation (when next year’s sixth graders visit): May 16th. Handbells and Concert Chorus.
Spring Concert: May 23rd. Beginning and Concert Choruses and Handbells. This is the biggie! And, since it’s my last spring concert, it will be very special.
8th grade awards: June 3rd, at Wellington High School. Concert Chorus.
6th and 7th grade awards assemblies: June 5th, during the day at WLMS. Handbells.
Boy, that’s a lot to squeeze into the next five weeks. Are you ready?
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This is just something fun that I thought you’d enjoy. I know that I have shared the site for the Tone Deaf online comic before. This is a comic strip about a high school music program–mostly about the band, but the chorus teacher gets in there sometimes. The man who draws the strip is from Orlando, and he’s the one who designed some of the posters that I have up in the chorus room: the choir room rules and the one that compares music directors and Jedi masters. He has a new one that is made up of lots of music notation symbols, and made to look like the periodic table of elements. Enjoy!
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I know that you all know about the Grammy awards, the awards given by the music recording industry to performers. Did you know that the Grammy Foundation is now also honoring a music educator of the year? You can nominate your favorite music teacher–and who would that be Seriously, think about the things that you have learned by studying music. It’s more than just music skills, isn’t it? So, if you want to make a nomination, follow this link.
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I love to play with Wordles. They are word clouds that you can create online. I made one today with the titles of some of our handbell songs. I haven’t figured out how to save it in a larger size, but you can see the full size one here.
Wordles are fun to create. You can make your own at www.wordle.net
I am so sorry that I wasn’t able to be at the Equestrian Festival on Saturday night. OK, not really, because I was at Disney, as most of you know. Everyone has told me about the great job that you and Ms. Morton did of singing the national anthem. Ms. Prater sent me this picture, and I’m impressed by how
everyone has their mouths wide open!
While I was at Epcot, my husband and I went to hear the Voices of Liberty. If you haven’t heard them, it is definitely worth your while to go listen to them. They sing a cappella, in nine parts! Really! They are always wonderful, but this time was probably the best. They sing mostly patriotic and American folk songs. This time, they sang “Drink to Me Only With Thine Eyes,” a beautiful old song. It’s a special song for me, because, when I was in college, our choir director used it as a warm-up. They also sang “O, Susanna,” which is one of their signature songs that they do at almost every show. When they sing it, one of the men in the group sings the second verse as a solo, and gets down on one knee to sing to a lady in the front row of the audience. Can you guess who that was? Right: me! The amazing thing is, it was the fourth time in about 15 years that I’ve been “Susanna.” My husband and I were talking with the gentleman who sang to me after the show, and my husband mentioned that I teach middle school chorus. We started talking about staggered breathing, because he says it is the key to all their singing. So, next time you go to Disney, do yourself and your family a favor and go to the American Adventure pavilion in Epcot to hear the Voices of Liberty.
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Thank you to our Wellington Landings Ringers for a great performance yesterday at our Super STARR assembly. We have gotten so many compliments from other teachers. I think that this was the first time Mr. Wilbur heard us play, because he told me that we sounded a lot better than he had expected! Even this morning, teachers have come up to me, asking me to pass along their compliments to you for a job well done.
So, we’re moving on. We’ll put Pirates away for a while, and look at some new music. And, next week, Ms. Morton will begin teaching your class.
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Welcome back! It will be a busy spring for everyone, but especially for Chorus. MPA will be in early March this year, so we don’t have any time to waste.
In the meantime, though, I thought you might enjoy a musical joke. And if you don’t get it, then we have some serious work to do!
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