Kodaly Workshops And Professional Development

kodaly workshops

Are you interested in learning more about the Kodaly method? 

Do you enjoy attending workshops and learning from other music teachers just like you? 

As a music teacher for over a decade and a coach to many new music teachers, I believe in the power of workshops and professional development that actually applies to what you’re doing. 

There are many great options out there, but there are also a ton that is a waste of time. 

I know this sounds harsh, but it’s just the truth. 

This is why I did the research and searched around for great places to find Kodaly workshops and professional development. 

Find Kodaly workshops from regional and state-level Kodaly chapters. Great Kodaly workshops allow for the chance to explore a specific aspect of teaching music and for the time to connect and share with other music teachers just like you. 

Check out the rest of the article for more specific examples and why you’d want to go through Kodaly development in the first place.

Why Attend Professional Development?

Teaching is a challenging field. 

When you teach music, it’s difficult and lonely. 

In most school districts, you’re the only elementary music teacher they have. 

Even if there are others, they’re most likely at different buildings, and you see them only for district-wide professional development. 

The lonely feeling you get from being all on your own is quite disheartening, and it’s dangerous for your career. 

Humans learn best when we learn from each other and build connections. 

On top of this, the emotional toll of teaching causes many newer teachers to quit the profession within the first five years. 

Research shows that one of the most important things we can do to fix this is to connect with other music teachers. 

Whether it’s finding a mentor or merely venting, going to workshops and music-specific professional development allows for you to recharge and get fresh ideas. 

Types Of Kodaly Professional Development

Fortunately, music teachers love connecting with one another. 

For this reason, there have been several types of professional development that have arisen over the years. 

In this section, we’ll go over the most common types of professional development in regards to the Kodaly method. 

Often these tapes will also apply to the different music methodologies.

Levels Training Or Courses

This is the most common form of Kodaly professional development. 

The levels training or courses are often given in the summer for a 2 to 3 week period. 

They cost more, and you need to attend in person. 

Having gone through three levels myself, I know exactly how amazing and inspirational full levels and training like this is. 

For more on levels training, check out my article on what Kodaly training is. 

Conferences

Conferences are, as we all know, multiple days of training and learning from expert individuals. 

These often will take place over a weekend and cover a wide area such as a region or entire state. 

While there may be different sessions from different presenters, conferences are often centered around a few keynote speakers. 

These are people at the top of their field who have something unique to share. 

Conferences aren’t always as expensive as levels training, but they often require an overnight stay, which is great for building connections but not great for your pocketbook. 

Workshops

Stepping down from there, we have Kodaly workshops. 

Workshops are either in a single day or just a few hours on a single day. 

They’re hyper-specific on a single topic. 

The presenters may be big-name people, but they can also be teachers in the area who have something they’d like to share. 

Either way, workshops are an excellent way to learn and build connections with those in your area. 

Most of the time, workshops are much more affordable than larger forms of professional development. 

These also happen more frequently, with some ranging from quarterly to every month.

Online Training

With the advent of technology and the inconvenience of dealing with a pandemic, online training and workshops have risen in popularity. 

In some ways, this is great. 

You’ll often be able to attend professional development you wouldn’t normally be able to. 

It’s also usually cheaper. 

On the downside, some don’t believe online training gives you as much credibility, and you miss out on the chance to connect in person with others. 

But if this is all you can do, online courses and training are a great way to get new ideas and improve your skills. 

Where To Find Kodaly Workshops

Look below to find a list of relevant links to important websites where you can find Kodaly workshops. 

In general, first, I’d look at the national organization and see where the big-name conferences are being held. 

Then I’d look at the regional chapters and where they hold their yearly workshops.  

Finally, I’d also look at their local and state-level chapters to see when and where their workshops are located. 

All of this is in the links below. 

For online training, there isn’t a lot out there right now. 

I have run online workshops before, and the experience was so much fun I plan on doing some more. 

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Final Thoughts

If you haven’t gone to any Kodaly workshops in the past, I strongly encourage you to consider going to a few this year. 

They’ll give you new ideas on how and what to teach as well as connecting you with other music teachers just like you. 

Even if the Kodaly method isn’t your thing, there’s still a lot to learn from it. 

Going to any music specific professional development is a must for all music teachers.

You may also want to check out the best Kodaly method books

Zach VanderGraaff

Zach VanderGraaff is a K-5 music teacher with Bay City Public Schools in Michigan. He's a Past-President of the Michigan Kodaly Educators and Executive Secretary of the Midwest Kodaly Music Educators Association.

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