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Can't make it to Somerset? Then come to the
Harpers' Escape Weekend
October 7-9, 2016




Lever Harp Teacher's Symposium
with Robbin Gordon-Cartier

robbin gordon-carter

All-Day Thursday Special
July 21, 2016

We're Doing It Again with an All-New Agenda
About the Teacher's Symposium

This will be the fifth Teacher's Symposium created by festival director Kathy DeAngelo. Last year, she and Robbin Gordon-Cartier developed a new curriculum for the full day program, which had an enthusiastic response from all the attendees. This year we have an all-new agenda, which runs from 10am to 5pm. Students have diverse learning styles and harp teachers need to have flexible, adaptable teaching methods that address their students' needs. This program will:

Each participant will receive a comprehensive guide and resource handout. Whether you currently work exclusively from sheet music or teach by ear, there's something for everybody.


robbin gordon-cartierYour Facilitator: Robbin Gordon-Cartier

Robbin Gordon-Cartier is a popular motivational speaker and presenter at all the major harp events in the US and she's from right here in NJ! She herself started harp as a younster and spent long summers in Ireland studying at the Royal Irish Academy. She has appeared nationally and internationally everywhere from Carnegie Hall to the National Symphony of Santo Domingo.  She plays frequently at churches and gospel events. Robbin created an extensive and very successful harp program in the East Orange School District's Cicely Tyson's School of the Performing Arts, which is why we tapped her in 2014 to direct our Youth Harp Program. She is an extraordinary talent and personality and just the inspirational, creative tour de force and leads our Teacher's Symposium for the second consecutive year!

Teacher's Symposium Agenda
(we're still polishing this up--check back for updates & changes)

Morning Agenda: 10am-12pm (all times approximate)

10-10:30am: Teacher Play-In
Let's get some music going in the room as a way to introduce ourselves. Robbin will teach an easy and fun song by ear to get the group relaxed.

10:30-11:30am: Develop your teaching style (Part 1) hands-on harps
--Teachers introduce their favorite teaching song.
-- Discussions begin on identifying different styles of playing and the suitability of the style to the different genres.
--Creating a musical individual education plan (IEP) as a guide.
--Playing by ear, music reading skills and the Suzuki method will all be discussed as part of a comprehensive all-inclusive approach.

11:30am–12pm: Harps for your Students
---Creating a harp rental program (the business side of investing in harps to rent out)
--small business loans & establishing credit
--harp rental contracts, payment plans
--Establishing relationships with harp vendors for rental programs/deals etc
--Helping your students evaluate the right harp for them (size, body dynamics, costs etc).

Afternoon Agenda: 12-5pm (all times approximate)

12:15-1pm: Working Lunch. Bring your lunch back to the meeting room.
Discussion: The Ups and Downs of Teaching
If you have students across the age span, they invariably come to lessons with different expectations and you probably will have different relationships with them. Music lessons come with a whole host of emotional attachments, or not.
--Let's share stories about positive or negative student relationships.
--When is it time, or ever, for the student to move on? Dealing with your emotions when a student wants to move on to another teacher.
-- Your relationship with a child's parent.

1-1:30pm: Harp Maintenance
--Best methods for teaching students how to tune their own harps
--Online & phone app tools your students will love (even if you're not tech savvy)
--Get yourself comfortable with minor harp maintenance & repair

1:30-2pm: Performances for Students
--Among the topics: using recitals as a motivational tool
--Creating performance opportunities & encouraging group playing between students
--Working with students on performance anxiety (and dealing with your own!)

2-2:30pm: Online Tools & Teaching
--The pros and cons of Skype lessons and issues associated with using this technology, both for the teacher and the student
--Real live demo and sample lesson using Skype
-- Show me the money & how to get paid when teaching all over the world from your studio
--A review and discussion of helpful online teaching tools .

Take a break and network some more!

3-4pm: Practical Examples of teaching methods and scenarios
--Teachers will work in pairs developing lesson examples for teaching problems and situations that they will receive on cards.
--Teachers present to groups after work period and then discussion on the pros and cons of solutions.

4-4:30pm: Teachers Play Out

4:30-5pm: Close out with final questions

Costs & Registration

Thursday Teacher's Symposium: included in your Somerset registration (either at the full festival $395 early-bird rate or $150 daily rate during the early-bird period which ends May 1). You must sign up in advance!

Simply check-off the Teacher's Symposium option listed in the Thursday Workshops section on the Registration form. If you already registered for the festival and decide you want to come on Thursday, you can add any of the Thursday Specials like the Teacher's Symposium to your registration at any time. Just email Kathy.

Download the registration form here or go to our Registration page to get the full list of what's covered in your registration. Any questions? Please call Kathy (856) 795-7637.



Updated 1/7/16
Workshop descriptions and schedules are subject to change. Refresh your browser to make sure you have the latest version of this page.