President’s Message, Fall 2016 – Donuts, Fashion Choices, and Membership Benefits

Donuts, Fashion Choices, and Membership Benefits

christina headshotA new donut shop recently opened up near our home.  Early one Saturday, I decided to throw my shoes on, sneak out, and surprise my family with morning treats.  As I was making my purchase, the man behind the counter said, “I see you’re a teacher.  You get 10% off every day!”  I was a bit confused, trying to decide how the man figured out my occupation, when he pointed to my t-shirt.  I was wearing our IMTA t-shirt, offered at last year’s State Conference in Vincennes!  I thanked him, collected our goodies, and left.  On the drive back home, I smiled at my forty-nine cent savings, but I quickly began to wonder how many of us are missing out on valuable benefits from our IMTA/MTNA memberships?

The Members-Only section on the MTNA website lists a very impressive summation of corporate sponsorships secured by our organization, and these are not to be missed!  However, I would also argue many of us are missing benefits that can’t be measured in dollar signs.

For example, we just wrapped up our 2016 State Conference, and it was truly an event to remember!  Goshen College proved to be an incredible host, with top-notch facilities and featured presentations by incredible artists.  Highlights included:

  • Jorge Muniz, our 2016 Commissioned Composer, debuted an exhilarating piano trio with assistance from Goshen faculty performers Matthew Hill, Jose Rocha, and Solomia Soroka. This contemporary perspective on the Granados Goyescas was full of vivid imagery and strong emotive themes.
  • Featured Speaker, Karen Zorn, delivered an inspiring keynote address (she really had me fooled with that cell phone!), as well as a Saturday morning session devoted to the El Sistema movement that moved many of us to tears.
  • Of course, Christopher Taylor delivered an inspired performance on Friday evening,
    along with a very informative Master Class on avaSaturday morning.  Thanks to Goshen’s innovative broadcasting of sound/video into the lobby, I was even able to enjoy the Chopin Preludes with newborn Ava in tow!
  • The variety of sessions offered each day was first rate. We were happy to host a large number of quality presentations from a diverse group of teachers.   There was truly something offered for everyone!

So, what if you missed our 2016 State Conference?  There are still MANY valuable opportunities to be experienced in your nearest Local Association!  I am constantly impressed by the work our Local Associations do to enrich their area programs and teacher development.  If you need any information on Local Associations, please contact me at cwpiano@comcast.net!

Of course, as MTNA members, we also have a steady stream of current research delivered straight to our mailboxes via the American Music Teacher, as well as our inboxes with the MTNA eJournal.  I am always pleased with the insights I take away from these resources, and kick myself any time I let them go unread!

As with so many things in life, I find we get the most benefit from our IMTA/MTNA memberships when we put forth some effort ourselves.  I challenge you to make the time to attend conferences (the 2017 National Conference in Baltimore promises to be AMAZING!), connect with area teachers, and read your journals.  I assure you, the benefits will outweigh the costs!

Musical blessings to each of you!

 

Christina L. Whitlock, IMTA State President

President’s Message, Summer 2016

christina headshotWhew!  Congratulations to each of you as we collectively celebrate the wrap of another successful Spring semester!

As musicians, we have an uncanny ability to take these next few months (meant, for many, to be full of rest and relaxation) and turn them into some of our fastest-paced weeks of the year.  Whether you are traveling, running summer camps, or simply maintaining status-quo, I do hope you will find opportunities to renew your spirit and get inspired for the start of a new school year (is it too soon to mention that?).

Many of you will be participating in workshops and running innovative summer programs.  Please consider taking photos of you with your fellow IMTA members at these events, and send them to me at cwpiano@comcast.net.  We would love to share some of your summer activities on the IMTA Facebook page.

As for me, my summer plans revolve around the birth of a new baby, coming in July.  There’s a good chance you’ll get a glimpse of the little lady at our 2016 State Conference!  Be sure to mark your calendars for what promises to be a terrific event:  September 30th – October 1st at Goshen College.

Here’s to sunshine, serenity, and your own summer lifestyle!

 

Christina Whitlock,
IMTA President

President’s Message, Spring 2016

Welcome to the Spring Semester, IMTA Members!christina headshot

Just as we count on the coming months to deliver us warmer temperatures and pleasant flowers, we also find this time of year heavy with expectations to bring our students’ efforts to fruition via countless festivals, competitions, and year-end performances. Whatever your personal teaching situation looks like, I wish you a successful spring term, complete with students who memorize their pieces ahead of deadline, travel plans unencumbered by weather conditions, and plenty of anxiety coping techniques! J

Like a teacher, constantly focused on equipping students with the most effective skills, I find myself considering how we, as an organization, can have a greater impact on music education and advocacy at the local, state, and national levels. Rest assured, your IMTA Board of Directors is a dynamic group of individuals who are volunteering their time to enhance the benefits of this fine organization.

In the coming months, I hope you will notice a positive difference in the communication you receive as an IMTA member, as well as enhanced features of our organization. If you see a need we could help fulfill, please contact me at your earliest convenience (cwpiano@comcast.net).

Wishing you the least-harried spring semester yet!

 

Christina L. Whitlock, M.M., N.C.T.M.
IMTA State President

President’s Message, Fall 2015

christina headshotFall greetings to you!

Whether you are an independent teacher or a university faculty member, one thing is sure:  the August/September rush is intense!   As educators, this time of year presents itself as an annual whirlwind of new schedules, fresh ideas, changing student rosters, and an endless list of things we would do “if we had the time”.

Needs trump wants (after all, isn’t that what being an adult is all about?), yet it’s easy to let deadlines and expectations pull our focus from the things that nourish us the most.

At the annual IMTA membership meeting last month, I referenced this important truth:  We are better together.  Whether it’s “talking shop” at a state or national conference, attending a local association meeting, or simply reading your American Music Teacher journal, I think we can all agree:  We are better together.  Through the opportunities provided by IMTA, we learn about new materials, explore alternative learning models, empathize with one another, build professional standards, and challenge one another.  Each event leads me to find a stronger sense of self:  what I believe musically, who I wish to be professionally, and how our purpose fits into this crazy world.  I hope you do not overlook this important benefit of membership.

Since I mentioned being together, it is important to give our 2015 State Conference committee at Vincennes University another round of applause!  Matthew Latta, Lisa Miller, and Claudia Bossard worked together like a well-oiled machine to put on an innovative conference, full of many IMTA firsts.  Our traditional conference events featured Logan Skelton, Diane Hidy, and Marietta Simpson (in addition to seventeen other presenters!).  Additionally, this year’s committee organized new events, like the high school Festival Chorus with Greg Gilpin, and countless assiduous details.  I cannot wait to sport my IMTA State Conference t-shirt around town!

This early-semester rush will soon lead to the bustling holiday season, which will transition into the cold winter slump, culminating in the frenzy of spring.  I hope you will continue stay in close contact with your IMTA colleagues as your to-do lists continue to grow.  After all, we are better together.

Looking forward to an exhilarating two years of being President,

 

Christina L. Whitlock

President’s Message, Spring 2011

Greetings Colleagues,

Thanks go to Julianne Miranda, our new IMT Newsletter Editor, for initiating our foray into the first edition of the Indiana Music Teacher online!  You may remember that Julianne led us in the development of our website and she has done it again with our newsletter.  Not only was Julianne a president of IMTA from 2001 to 2004, but she has continued to play a large role in the technology area for IMTA and is returning as chair of Technology Development – I am excited to see what she has in store for our next conference.  Please give a big THANK YOU to Julianne for her continued support of IMTA.

The 2010 Conference was a big success at Wabash College and a warm thank you goes to Cheryl Everett and her committee members for all of their work.  In response to the previous year’s survey, two sessions were presented concurrently during each hour of the conference.  The response for this was positive and next conference will continue with this.  The 2011 Conference Session Call will go online in the next few weeks, so please submit your ideas.Continue reading