AUGUST 19, 2010

Inspired by Listening

I was fortunate enough to land in Elizabeth Peterson’s (aka@eliza_peterson and @inspired_clsrm) workshop on active listening at ntcamp (New Teacher Camp unconference) earlier this year, and then I hit the jackpot: I got a “freebie” copy of her resource book for K-8 classroom teachers (and I would argue, involved parents), Inspired By Listening.

After the conference Elizabeth asked me if I might take a moment to let folks know how I liked the book, and after wrestling briefly with the challenge of containing my enthusiasm within the bounds of 140 characters, I decided to go old school and write an actual post.

So, first off, I am keeping this book. I am not a music teacher, or even primarily a classroom teacher, but as the singing parent of a piano-learning musical boy, I decided pretty quickly that this book was going to stay on my shelves rather than gracing someone else’s. I have reached the point in life where I’m not actively looking to add to my collection of hard copy books much (small house!), but I make exceptions for great reference resources and poetry. This book stays.

Here’s why.

The book represents the collected wisdom of a skilled practitioner. Elizabeth has DONE these activities, with all kinds of kids in all sorts of settings, and it shows.

The book is grounded in an assumption that we all have so much to learn from listening, and specifically from active listening, listening in which we engage both our emotions and our intellect. I couldn’t agree more.

The book is a great combination of theory and practice. The lesson plans and worksheets would help any K-8 teacher see ways to integrate active listening and music into their days, and Elizabeth’s explanations are great for those of us who trend towards the theory-wonk end of the spectrum.

To me, this book represents a welcoming and open invitation for teachers to make a passion-based connection with their students. Which is something that another teacher I admire has been thinking and writing about lately as he prepares his proposal to lead a conversation at EduCon 2.3.

I love it when the strands of my PLN start to weave together!

So there you have it. If you teach, and love music, and want to share and kindle some of that passion with your students, you should treat yourself to a copy of Inspired By Listening.

Your own copy. 🙂

(Thanks to @andycinek@rkiker@geraldaungst,
and all the ntcamp attendees,
@Eliza_Peterson and the #temt crew,
and @mcarls and the EduCon gang.
Such inspiring folks out there!)

1 comment:

Elizabeth Peterson said…

Thanks Shelley for such a nice review. It has truly made my day/week/month! So glad to have you in my PLN.