Music Ed Monday – The Year of No

A few years ago, two of my very good friends made a New Year’s Resolution to say yes to anyone invited them out to something, hoping to embark on some new adventures and live a little more. “Want to go out for drinks?” Yes. “Want to go snowboarding next weekend?” Yes. “Want to come to the beach in fifteen minutes?” Yes. Yes. Yes. And so on, … Continue reading Music Ed Monday – The Year of No

Music Ed Monday – The Quest for Beer at the Orchestra

Back in Summer of 2015, I was asked by the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra if I could do an arrangement of a pop song for a divisional choir and the orchestra.  Every other year, the River East Transcona School Division hires out the orchestra to play with their choir.  This was an enormous opportunity, so of course I said yes, then got it done on time … Continue reading Music Ed Monday – The Quest for Beer at the Orchestra

Music Ed Monday – Fine-Thanks-And-You (Part 1)

(This is part one of a two-part post.  The first part will introduce the topic, while the second will address some of the skills associated with what it looks like in a classroom, at least at a rudimentary level). The CBC (our public broadcaster, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) ran a program this past year on its current events show about mindfulness in the classroom.  It … Continue reading Music Ed Monday – Fine-Thanks-And-You (Part 1)

VGM Wednesday – “Demise of the Ritual” from Shadow of the Colossus

“Demise of the Ritual” from Shadow of the Colossus, by Ko Otani Shadow of the Colossus is one of those games that I never, ever thought I would beat.  I don’t know why, but I had this fear of it, like I wasn’t very good or something.  I knew a ton of people who’d beaten it, but I never thought I’d be one of them… … Continue reading VGM Wednesday – “Demise of the Ritual” from Shadow of the Colossus

Sabbatical Roundup – Highlights

Today is the last day of my sabbatical.  Who would’ve thought 150 days would blow by so quickly? It’s been a very productive five months, though, and I thought that I’d share some of my favourite events and projects from my sabbatical time. 1) Premiering Morgun with the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra There is something very surreal about getting to work with some of the best musicians … Continue reading Sabbatical Roundup – Highlights

Music Ed Monday – The First Day

Tomorrow is the first day of school.  I can’t remember a time where the September Long Weekend didn’t mean “it’s time to get ready for school.” As a kid, that meant schedules, timetables, and school supplies.  As a young adult, that meant paying tuition and buying textbooks.  As a grown-up (whatever that even means), that meant prepping the classroom and getting ready to head back … Continue reading Music Ed Monday – The First Day

Music Ed Monday – Transform and Make It So (Part 2)

In Part One of this mini-series, I reviewed how the character of Jean-Luc Picard was influential to me in my adolescence.   But, when I was a lot younger, I had Optimus Prime. Optimus Prime (from Generation One) was strong without being brutish.  He would fight, but only when necessary.  He would take responsibility of his actions and always, always protect the humans.  That was a … Continue reading Music Ed Monday – Transform and Make It So (Part 2)

Music Ed Monday – When They Miss the Beauty

While at Grade 10 Band Camp, the chaperones (all of whom were educators) were discussing the trials of teaching and one of them said something that I haven’t forgotten: What really troubles me isn’t when they don’t get the material, but when they resist it.  If they’re trying, then they’ll get it eventually, but when they resist it, they will always miss the beauty. That’s what is really … Continue reading Music Ed Monday – When They Miss the Beauty

Music Ed Monday – The Double Bind of Truth-Telling

So, I’m reading a book that’s blowing my mind. It’s called The Curse of the Good Girl and it’s by Rachel Simmons.  I’ve had it on my book shelf for about three years – I bought it in the same shopping trip as The Purity Myth, which also blew my mind.  Clearly, this was a good day at the bookstore. The Curse of the Good … Continue reading Music Ed Monday – The Double Bind of Truth-Telling

VGM Ed Mondnesday – “Dying Over and Over Repeatedly” or “Why Super Meat Boy Makes Students Into More Successful Human Beings”

Once upon a time, console platformers (Super Mario Bros., Sonic the Hedgehog, Wonder Boy, etc.) gave the player three lives to beat the level.  In the case of Super Mario Bros., you got three lives to beat the whole game.  You may be thinking “but you’ve got 1ups!” and yes, that’s true, but allow me to pull you into a stressful part of your past… You (as … Continue reading VGM Ed Mondnesday – “Dying Over and Over Repeatedly” or “Why Super Meat Boy Makes Students Into More Successful Human Beings”