Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 42

Perspectives in Pedagogy

Issues and Ideas:

Perspectives in Pedagogy
Rebecca Grooms Johnson, Editor

Rebecca Grooms Johnson, Ph.D., NCTM, is a nationally respected leader in the field of piano pedagogy. She is an independent teacher and has taught extensively at the university level. Active in the Music Teachers National Association, she has served as President of the OhioMTA, National Chair of MTNA’s Pedagogy Committee, and National Certification Chair. She is currently Vice-President of the MTNA Board of Directors, and three times a year she publishes a feature article in American Music Teacher titled “What’s New in Pedagogy Research.”

Feeling singed? Coping with burnout

A

s you returned from the holiday break (or madness!), did you look forward to your regular teaching schedule, or did you feel less than enthusiastic at the idea of seeing your students again? Most of us have times in our lives when we feel tired and withdrawn, not ready to face another long day of teaching.

In this issue and the upcoming May/June issue, you will find articles discussing how to recognize and manage the symptoms of burnout that you may be feeling. We spend so much of our time learning about better ways to teach and play the piano, let’s take some time to explore better ways to take care of ourselves!

Fired up!
by Rachel Kramer
dmit it—it’s 2:10 and it looks like your 2:00 student isn’t showing— relief (she never comes prepared and talks too much!). Admit it—you just found out that the article you have due on the fifteenth has been extended to the twentieth—breathing again (you hadn’t started it anyway!). And, it’s only sixty-two days until spring break. It’s another year of faculty meetings with your colleagues, another year facing those students whose parents are forcing them to be in your studio, another year in the life of the professional music teacher. For everything in life there is a shadow side—the “dark side”—the side that is not apparent to most of the world. It is the secret side, the yin and yang. Sometimes it is a difficult thing for the professional music teacher to admit, but nonetheless it is a part of our lives. Like a relationship, the things that attract people to each other can be the very things that end up annoying them. Historically, educators have not been given “permission” to experience burnout; however, we can love what we do and still feel tired, frustrated, and even burned out.

This issue’s contributor:

Rachel Kramer, NCTM, holds Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in piano performance from Eastern Illinois University, and a Master of Music in piano performance and pedagogy from the University of Michigan. Kramer served as the Manager of Educational Programs for the Baldwin Piano & Organ Co., and was the Assistant Executive Director at MTNA. Rachel is president of Music Learning Center, Inc., a group musicteaching program in Cincinnati, is an adjunct faculty member at Wilmington College, and was the 2009 Ohio Independent Teacher of the Year.

A

Your life
Let’s talk about you, your life, and about taking care of yourself—renewing and recharging, relighting and igniting, so that you are the best possible person and teacher. If you are scattered, disorganized,
42
CLAVIER COMPANION

unmotivated, depressed, angry, tired, confused, lack a sense of humor, feel obligated—your students will know! Students can sense anxiousness in their teacher, especially when it is someone they hold in high regard. They love you, whether you believe it or not, and they know when you are not present. In The Courage to Teach, Parker Palmer writes: “Teaching, like any truly human activity, emerges from one’s inwardness, for better or worse. As I teach, I project the condition of my soul onto my students, my subject, and our way of being together. The entanglements I experience in the classroom are often no more or less than the convolutions of my inner life. Viewed from this angle, teaching holds a mirror to the soul. If I am willing to look in that mirror and not run from what I see, I have a chance to gain self-knowledge— and knowing myself is as crucial to good teaching as knowing my students and my subject.”1 Understanding yourself and your relationship to the profession will help you become a more effective teacher, feel better, and look forward to seeing your 2:00 student. You will stop feeling “busy” and focus on what is really important. Your physical and emotional health will improve, and relationships with your colleagues will be more rewarding. Let’s look more closely at the relationship between our profession as teachers and the hazards of early and increased burnout.
JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2012



Clavier Companion - January/February 2012

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Clavier Companion - January/February 2012

Clavier Companion - January/February 2012
Contents
Editor's Page: New discoveries
Variations: Tackling a twelve-year old's slump
Musings: Creative being and the disciplined life
An interview with Jean-Yves Thibaudet
The story of music on board the RMS Titanic
The enchanted world of piano fairy tales
Jazz & Pop: The rhythms of jazz: Syncopation
Music Reading: Recipes for effective teaching
Perspectives: Coping with burnout
Technology: Virtual reality in the piano studio
Tech Tips
First Looks: What Music Means To Me
New music reviews
CD & DVD reviews
News & Notes
Pupil Saver
Keyboard Kids' Companion
Advertiser Index
Questions & Answers
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - Clavier Companion - January/February 2012
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - Cover2
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - Contents
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 2
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 3
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - Editor's Page: New discoveries
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 5
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - Variations: Tackling a twelve-year old's slump
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 7
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - Musings: Creative being and the disciplined life
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 9
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - An interview with Jean-Yves Thibaudet
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 11
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 12
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 13
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 14
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 15
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 16
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 17
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - The story of music on board the RMS Titanic
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 19
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 20
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 21
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 22
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 23
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 24
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 25
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 26
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 27
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 28
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 29
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - The enchanted world of piano fairy tales
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 31
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 32
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 33
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 34
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 35
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - Jazz & Pop: The rhythms of jazz: Syncopation
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 37
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - Music Reading: Recipes for effective teaching
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 39
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 40
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 41
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - Perspectives: Coping with burnout
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 43
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 44
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 45
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - Technology: Virtual reality in the piano studio
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - Tech Tips
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 48
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 49
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - New music reviews
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 51
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 52
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 53
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - CD & DVD reviews
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 55
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - News & Notes
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - Pupil Saver
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 58
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 59
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - Keyboard Kids' Companion
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 61
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - Advertiser Index
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - 63
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - Questions & Answers
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - Cover3
Clavier Companion - January/February 2012 - Cover4
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