NHMEA Octoberfest: First Presentation of the Season

   This week has been nuts! Not only was it a short week, I also had a grade level show in the evening on Wednesday and then flipped  right around and headed to present at SNHU for NHMEA’s Octoberfest conference on Thursday and then came back to school today to teach. Next week I have two more events I’ll be attending or directing and then the week after I have a virtual call with a college class setup..whew! Is October over yet?  What I wanted to blog about this week was my experience presenting yesterday at Octoberfest, it was my first time presenting this season and first time presenting to my in-state collegues!

    Octoberfest itself is a full workshop day. We started out listening to NAfME’s wonderful President Nancy Ditmer give the keynote speech and then followed it with 2 interest sessions, lunch (I got to sit and talk with with Nancy and our NHMEA President Sandi Howard!), and then another 2 interest sessions before the all-member meeting which closed out our day. Other than presenting I attended Ms. Ditmer’s session on teacher health and avoiding burnout which was fantastic, I loved the small circle and how it was a discussion with her. I also rocked out in a world drumming session with Phil Martin and picked up some pointers for when I drum with my kiddos, and then ended with Eric Kobb talking about how he formed his iBand! I got some great tips and tools to use with my own group.


     I was very excited to present my session and extremely nervous. It was the very first time I would be presenting to my collegues and friends in state. I have done MMEA, I’ve done TMEA, I’ve done Christa Maculiffe, but never NHMEA. My session focused on why you should be integrating tech into your elementary music classroom, some great ways how, and a plethora of resources you can use. Including a big chunk of QuaverMusic which I was lucky to have been sent brochures for the program that went out with my handouts. It has probably been one of my best put together sessions I have done yet. I did run short on time but that was because of how invested my 35-40 participants were in the session. I had a lot of great questions and went longer because of the discussions we were having. I don’t think I have had a room yet that was so animated with laughter, oohs, ahhs, and smiles. It made me get silly and have more fun myself. Things that Iwas planning to really just skim over they wanted to see even more of (I will admit I Sid Shuffled a little http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ycq_E6sN3CI&feature=share&list=PLoGcukJlyfnJsj9n-9u_JKFmO1c5Tz6GS). I got to talk about my favorite resources I use, why I integrate and how to do it in a way that is beneficial for students, and boast about some of my sucesses with technology  in my classroom. After I ended it was a great feeling to have so many people come up to say hi and talk. I was excited to hear so many of them say they will be in contact with me soon for help and even one person asked to come observe!. Hearing things like that is exciting. I love music and I love technology and helping music teachers like myself learn how to use it is my passion.

       I have found I love presenting and teaching music teachers how to use technology in a meaningful way, being told I am “inspiring” is such a cool feeling. I am in year two in the presenting world and really could do this all of the time if I was given the chance to. Getting up and speaking about what I know from the heart is not only an adrenaline rush but also makes me feel good and feel like I am helping others. I of course love my students and love to teach them, but teaching teachers is a whole different experience, one that I’ve found I love to do. I’m hoping my presenting schedule turns out like last year. I only signed up for two conferences in the beginning but got asked to do some and ended up with at least 5 different conferences. Right now though, I have to anxiously await for TMEA/TI:ME in February!

Would you like my session materials from NHMEA Octoberfest? Visit my websites conference page by clicking here 



Of course my new presenter outfit was pretty fun to wear too 😉

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