Krista Hart is a former music educator with a passion for choral music. She attended Wichita State University and taught middle school music in the public schools. Following her teaching years, she spent nearly a decade assisting directors in choosing literature for their own choirs, and curating selections for dozens for choral reading sessions and clinics at Senseney Music in Wichita, KS. Additionally, she directed church choirs, performed with local choirs, and served on the boards of choral organizations. She continues to help people experience the joy of making music now by working for the Marketing and Editorial teams at Alfred Music, and performing with the Pasadena Master Chorale. The author of Music-Go-Round: 100 Puzzle Pages for Young Musicians, Krista's newest publication is A Music Teacher's Gratitude Journal: Creative Prompts to Nurture Joy, Reduce Stress, and Reflect on Your Teaching.
Gratitude is a powerful tool for teachers—both for personal and classroom applications. It can be used to help establish a healthy classroom culture as it increases feelings of optimism and joy, decreases anxiety and depression, and helps students feel more connected to their community.
Imagine what your ensemble could achieve if every student showed up fully engaged! Engagement is all about how involved or interested students are in their own learning, and how connected they feel to the subject matter, the teacher, and their classmates. It includes having an active role in the learning process and a sense of ownership about what they are studying.
We are just on the brink of coming out of this pandemic, but things will be different, and we will have changed. How do we use these experiences as a tool to improve ourselves, our teaching, and our students? How do we make lemonade out of this mound of lemons that has been heaped upon us?