(Photo credit: FreeImages.com, photographer Cody Mummau)
I have only the fondest memories of sitting around a fireside with family or friends. On those crisp nights, often roasting marshmallows and engaging in stimulating conversation, these intimate moments were perfect for swapping stories and reminiscing about vacation plans, personal dreams, or even revisiting tales from “the good old days.” Somehow the fire brought us all together, cleared our troubles, and warmed our hearts!
Although I’m too young to have heard them personally, we all know the impact of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s official “fireside chats” during World War II, his interpreting the news, inspiring our hope, giving out assurances, advice, and perspective, while interconnecting the mutual bonds and unity of our citizenry for the common good.
Now that I am happily retired from full-time music teaching, I realize downsizing and eliminating all of the office clutter is absolutely necessary. Cleaning out the file cabinets, I was surprised to see how many articles I wrote specifically for my ensemble members… everything from practicing, goal-setting, and development of leadership skills to selecting a new instrument. When I was teaching in the Upper St. Clair School District, we had online “teacher pages” linked to the school website which allowed me to distribute and archive these “tips and techniques” for students, parents, and colleagues alike.
Relevant today now more than ever, I decided to edit and re-issue these “Fox’s Firesides” for the members of the South Hills Junior Orchestra (SHJO), which rehearses on Saturdays from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in the Upper St. Clair High School Band Room. (Anytime you’re in the area, stop by and bring your instrument: 1825 McLaughlin Run Road, Pittsburgh, PA 15241).
Hopefully you will find these “gems” helpful. Under the category of “Fox’s Firesides,” this blog-site will warehouse these writings. This is a “Series to Share,” so please feel free to copy and pass them on to other music students, parents, amateur musicians, and teachers “in the trenches.”
Stay tuned for future issues of Fox’s Firesides!
Feel free to download and share these articles:
- CLIP01 March 14, 2020
- CLIP02 March 17, 2020
- CLIP03 March 20, 2020
- CLIP04 March 23, 2020 and Sample Music Bingo Cards
- CLIP05 March 26, 2020, Music Reporter and What to Do When You Practice Booklet
- CLIP06 March 29, 2020
- CLIP07 April 1, 2020, I Am My Own Music Teacher Journal (WORD file) or (PDF)
- CLIP08 April 3, 2020
- CLIP09 April 7, 2020
- CLIP10 April 11, 2020
- CLIP11 April 16, 2020 (also click here to see sample practice journals)
- CLIP12 April 20, 2020
- CLIP13 April 24, 2020
- CLIP14 April 28, 2020
- CLIP15 May 1, 2020
- CLIP16 May 5, 2020
- CLIP17 May 10, 2020
- CLIP18 May 14, 2020
- CLIP19 May 18, 2020
- CLIP20 May 25, 2020
- CLIP21 May 31, 2020
- CLIP22 June 8, 2020
- CLIP23 June 16, 2020
- CLIP24 June 23, 2020
- CLIP25 June 30, 2020
- CLIP26 July 7, 2020
NEW DEADLINE: July 18, 2020.
Continue to submit new audio/video recordings of your playing, Classical Music listening recommendations, or a copy of your PRACTICE LOG or CLIP JOURNAL to prove you are still engaged in music-making!
Please continue your “online” musical journey, pursuit of artistic enrichment, and consistent “at home” practice!
Practicing with a Plan (attributed to Dan Urbanowicz from Peters Township)
© 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020 by Paul K. Fox