Sunday, October 30, 2005

Peters Elementary

I had a fun visit to Peters Elementary in Broken Arrow on Friday, where I ran my new songwriting critique program with the fifth grade language arts classes.

I was there for Red Ribbon Week, and I performed "Fifty Ways to Say No to Drugs" as well as "This Red Ribbon" as part of my morning assembly. I gave mini-programs for the special needs class and the afternoon Pre-K and Kindergarten classes.

And I did four half hour critique sessions with the fifth graders. Although I've taken my songs to classrooms for critique many times, this was the first time I did it as a formal program. Each session began with a conversation about the writing process, in particular why we write and how and why to solicit and use good feedback. Then I performed one of the songs I'm currently working on and we did a four step critique process on the song.

I really enjoyed these sessions. We ended up talking about all sorts of songwriting issues. I got some great feedback on my songs and I felt like there were plenty of teaching moments where I was able to get a new idea across. Hopefully the kids will be inspired to apply some of these concepts to their own writing.

Watch for a new podcast soon, featuring one of the songs I recorded in Chicago last week!

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