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       Since our time together is so short and we have a jam-packed 2 days, we'd like to start making connections before we get started on May 30th.

       Please take a moment to introduce yourself and tell us a little about you (i.e. where / what you teach, what drew you to this class, and something to remember you by like a unique trait / hobby / summer plan, etc.) 

       Please also tell us the title of one or two or your favorite songs from any period in your life. What makes it a favorite? 

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  • I am Misty Circle and I am a former 5th grade, soon (and unexpectedly) to be 3rd grade, teacher at Nunaka Valley. As a 5th grade teacher I have used music as hooks for everything from the Revolutionary War to the Battle of the Little Bighorn to the Harlem Renaissance, but I was a little worried about getting resources to use with 3rd grade. I almost thought about dropping this class because I didn't think it would apply, but I am so glad I didn't. . Now I have lots of ideas about how to make not only music, but dance, work right into my Alaska studies. I am a Reader and a Rider. Here I am waiting for the new Sutton Library to be finished.

  • My name is Jennifer Spain and I live and work in Eagle River. I am currently a 5/6 teacher in the Open Optional Program at Eagle River Elementary. I was drawn to this class because our program has a fine arts focus, and I am always trying to find ways to integrate fine arts experiences into our day. This class has given me a lot of fabulous ideas!

    Growing up, I was exposed to many music genres and we even have a composer in the family. For whatever reason, a song that comes to mind when I think of my childhood is "I Feel the Earth Move Under My Feet" by Carol King. My dad would always play Carol King in the evening and I remember falling asleep to that song many nights. ☺
  • I am Dawnmarie and I have been a Montessori teacher for 28 years, 26 of them at Denali Montessori.  I never liked learning about history when I was growing up.  As a teacher, and in a time where reading, math, and writing seem to take precedence over cultural subjects, I see the importance of sharing the "stories" of history to make it more interesting and to help students make connections.  I feel it's important to constantly increase my own history background knowledge to make me a better teacher.

    This July, I'm married 27 years to my high school sweetheart!  He was almost "the boy next door," but he lived two doors down.

    I do not play an instrument, nor do I sing or dance well, but I have always loved music.   I couldn't pick one or two favorite songs because I listen to different types of music depending on my mood and what I'm doing, I love the songs we sing in church, and most of my favorite movies are musicals.

  • My name is Holly Boothe and I teach second grade at Birchwood ABC.  Another teacher at the school had suggested this course and it looked like a fun way to earn a credit, while also taking something back to the classroom next year.  I love reading books!

  • Valerie Spencer - Social Studies teacher at Eagle River high school, currently teaching Honors World, US, AK Studies, and Econ. These classes give me a variety of age groups, abilities, and interests. One common interest every class expressed is music. My goal in taking this class is to more fully integrate music and possibly dance in all of my classes...save perhaps Econ :)
  • I am Lesa Morrison, and teach music at Creekside Park. This finished my 31st year teaching, 11th at Creekside, and the 4th year teaching music. And I LOVE it--it is where I am supposed to be I know!.  My Masters is actually in ancient history, so this class will combine my great interests of song, dance, and history. I would love to teach my 5th grade curriculum throughout the year through American History, so am planning on moving towards that goal with this class. I don't have a favorite song, I love almost all music, but especially blues, classical, Big Band, and children's songs. Looking forward to meeting everyone I don't know yet, and working with all of you the next two days.

  • Hello! My name is Brady Byers, and I just completed my first year of teaching! I teach middle school band at Central Middle School of Science and Northern Lights ABC.  Being a music teacher, I'm interested in incorporating the other subjects into the class (and hopefully vice versa) and when I saw "teaching history through dance..." I was sold!  I'm hoping to learn some dances to teach in my band class (to get everyone up and moving!) and it's a bonus that it ties into teaching history, so it seemed worthwhile.  Two favorite songs are "Folk Song" by Robert Aldridge, and most recently "Into the Air" by Ivan Trevino.  Both are marimba songs, my favorite instrument!

  • This is from Nobuo

    I am Nobuo Toba and I teach bands in the east area elementary schools.  Last week I just finished my 9th year of teaching in Anchorage.  I was born and raised in Kyoto, Japan.  My college degree comes from universities in Oklahoma.  Previously I taught K-12 music, so I knew how much my students and I could have with dancing in music classes, so that is the reason I am taking this course.  Thank you.

  • Hi,

    My name is Tanya.  I live and teach in Chugiak, AK at Birchwood ABC.  Another teacher in our building recommended this class to our staff.  Also, our current music teacher, Elizabeth Hunt, I believe is one of the proctors for the class.  I'm sure my friends could tell you all sorts of unique traits to remember me by, but it's hard to think of something now.  I have a varied teaching background and once travelled with the Ringling Brothers Circus teaching students of the performers and workers.  My hobbies involve reading, watching movies, hiking, camping, and sewing.  My plans this summer are to enjoy being outside and spend time with my son and our new dog.  It's hard to pick a favorite song, but if I was forced to choose I'd say "The Pina Colada Song" and most anything on the Beethoven's Wig CD.  No real reasons those are my favorites.  

    I look forward to seeing you soon.


  • I teach 4th grade Spanish Immersion at Chugiak Elementary. However, next year I will be teaching 4th and 5th grade with a team of two other educators. Although my primary focus will be math next year, I will be supporting the 5th grade Social Studies curriculum. I enjoy music and dancing, particularly swing. A friend recommended this class to me, and it sounded intriguing. I can't wait for the hands on application! Hmmm... one of my favorite songs... that is a hard one... I really like "Go Light your Candle" by Chris Rice,  and "Share the Well" by Caedmon's Call." I like the musical style and the positive messages match what I believe all of us are supposed to do: shine in our own little corner! I like a lot of different genres; what I listen to usually depends on the mood I am in. This summer I am looking forward to travelling and visiting family in Mexico. Look forward to meeting all of you on the 30th!

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