Peter and Mary Alice Amidon
October 12 @ 8:30 am - October 13 @ 3:00 pm
Creating a Dynamic Learning Community with Traditional Dance, Song and Storytelling
The dancing and singing was delightful, but what I really appreciated was your detail toward the musicality of what you taught. It was never “just” singing or “just” dancing. Each element had a purpose and direction to it.
Kevin L. Droe, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Music Education, University of Northern Iowa
Peter and Mary Alice Amidon’s teacher workshop focuses on the community building power of traditional dance, song and storytelling in the schools. In both the Friday and Saturday sessions the Amidons will teach great traditional dances and singing games for children while sharing dance-teaching tips and discussing how to make dance a positive and integral part of school life. They will demonstrate enriching picture books with singing, storytelling, drama and background music. The Amidons will tell at least one folktale and discuss and demonstrate how to use storytelling as a powerful teaching tool. They will share some of their favorite songs while discussing starting and sustaining an all-school sing.
Friday, October 12
Friday’s sessions will have more of an emphasis on dances, singing games and songs from the oral tradition: classics that form the foundation of the Amidons’ work. Friday will also have more singing, including songs for both the classroom and for children’s choirs.
Saturday, October 13
Saturday’s session will include a number of newer composed dances, singing games and songs, including great dances composed by students and by teachers. On Saturday the Amidons will facilitate the whole group creating an original dance, and acting out a folktale.
Both Friday and Saturday will include SATB singing “for the good of our own souls”.
The Amidons hope that this workshop will help music teachers to transform their schools into singing and dancing communities.
Peter and Mary Alice Amidon are versatile and widely respected as performers and educators who have dedicated their careers as artists to traditional song, dance, and storytelling. They are equally at home performing a concert of stories and songs, calling a community dance, leading choral singing, and leading workshops of dancing, singing, and storytelling to children and teachers. They are in demand throughout the United States as clinicians leading Orff and Kodaly music teacher workshops, and have been headliners at several AOSA and OAKE national conferences and are honored to be members of the AOSA Advocacy Council. They are founding members of New England Dancing Masters, publishers of dance materials for children which are used by thousands of elementary school music teachers. The Amidons’ choral arrangements for adults and children are being sung by choruses throughout the United States and the UK. The Amidons are both former elementary school music teachers.