Ever wondered what it’s like to attend the biggest piano teaching conference in the world? Want to find out why I travelled for 20 hours in a thin metal cylinder at 35,000 feet just to attend a professional development event? Interested in what I took away from the event this year? Looking for the notes and slides from my presentation?
Today’s episode is my first solo podcast (let me know what you think) and it’s all about my time at the NCKP. In this episode, I answer all the above questions and give you a presenter’s view of the biggest piano teaching conference in the world. PS. This is a great episode to watch parts of on YouTube as I include video footage from the event. See link below to watch.
To put it simply, this was one of the best professional development events that I’ve been to and I wanted to podcast about it to encourage as many members of my community to think about attending as possible in the future.
I also want to encourage everyone to prioritise attending live teacher training events in their areas as much as possible as there is something tangible about getting together face-to-face with a room full of like-minded people that is incredibly inspirational and leaves you feeling less isolated and more motivated.
As usual, I’ve got a free download for you today [link below]. I’ve put together a quick checklist of links that you’ll find useful if you want to find out more about things that went on at the conference.
Are you enjoying these podcasts? I’d love for you to leave a podcast review. Find out how easy it is here.
In this episode, you’ll learn:
- What it’s like to be at the NCKP, the kinds of people you’ll meet, the venue and the content
- The two overarching themes of the conference this year and why this is important for all teachers
- Why teaching is changing and how to get on board
- Bradley Sowash’s method for teaching students using chords
- Why teaching pop music is important for your studio and your students
- My future webinar about teaching pop music
- The content of one of the best keynote speeches I’ve heard
- The order of development of music and language skills
- The flipped music studio
Items mentioned in this podcast:
- The Conference Booklet (timetable, speakers, details, etc.)
- Sir Ken Robinson’s TED Talk on creativity
- My NCKP Presentation Slides and Links
- Kristin Yost’s website (and lots of free downloads for studio business)
- Using YouTube to flip the studio
Today’s free download (click image to open):
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What’s been your favourite live event recently?
Have you been to a live event for piano teachers recently? Perhaps a local workshop or lecture or maybe a massive national conference. Whatever it is, let us know by leaving a comment below.
I used a few of Bradley Sowash’s “Scaling the Chords” exercises with an adult student who had taken lessons as a child, and could read at the late elementary-early intermedate level. She wanted to learn how to play for her church worship band and, as a piano tuner, be able to sit down and simply play and improvise a bit. After the first lesson she sent me a text “I just wanted to tell you I am enjoying playing so much! Thank you for teaching me practically!” Yea for creativity, improvisation, and thinking “outside” the traditional piano lesson! I will be using many of those scaling the chord exercises with my students in the future!
Hey thanks for your comments Amy – glad Brad’s ideas were inspiring for your student! I might be able to go to MTNA for the first time next year…what are you presenting on?
It’s called “The Wild West of Marketing: How do you know what really works?” I tracked the marketing results of the last 4 years of my new studio, recording how every person who inquired about lessons “heard about me.” I know it’s a big trip so hopefully you’ll get a chance to come. Conferences are never a disappointment professionally – just a commitment financially!
Sounds great Amy – I hope I can check it out.
Thanks for giving my ideas a go. I love hearing stories like this, which motivate to keep developing new materials to encourage creativity in the lessons.
I’ve been learning a lot from you the last year or so ever since I first learned who you were at the Indiana State Conference. Like many I was taught traditionally but over the last 10 years as our church has become very contemporary, my chording and playing by ear has improved 10 fold and even more so in the last couple years. Your scaling the chord exercises are great ideas for helping students and ourselves develop fluency and comfort at the keyboard. A few weeks ago in using a fake book with an adult student I gave him “permission” to not play the rhythm of the melody exactly how it was written but to use his ear and just PLAY using the notes as a guide since it was a familiar tune. I think he was shocked to hear it was “OK” and even a bit relieved! Yes, your work is making a difference!
Hi Tim – thanks for sharing your experience at the NCKP conference, it sounds amazing. Also, thank you for ALL of your podcasts, they are so inspiring! I just thought I would let our fellow Aussie teachers know that if they want to purchase Bradley Sowash’s book Creative Chords it is available from their Australian distributors who are Encore Music (KJos Music don’t ship to Australia). You can buy from them direct or via e-bay by searching for “Creative Chords”. I just ordered my copy and can’t wait to try it out.
Hey Coo! Thanks for the feedback. Try and get along in 2 years – well worth it 🙂 Thanks also for the link for Brad’s book – that’s a great help for other readers. Feel free to leave a review on itunes about the podcast if you haven’t already done so 😉 https://topmusic.co/topcast-music-teaching-podcast/leave-a-review/
Thanks for sharing that Coo. I didn’t know where to direct Australian teachers myself! Here’s their website: http://www.encoremusic.com.au