In most areas of my life I try to practice some type of minimalism. I have a limited wardrobe. I have few possessions. Outside of instruments and books, I’ve made a conscious decision to not amass a lot of things.
I was grateful for this background when I got my K4 teaching job. My first classroom was a big, empty room. It came with a cart with a computer and an ancient sound system. I asked for a projector, and I was off and running. I did eventually add a few bits, but for the most part, I taught successfully for three years with very little stuff.
Reflecting on this got me thinking: can we practice some of the same concepts that minimalist gurus teach, in our classrooms, and in our lives? If we can, how could our practice as educators improve? What areas should look at first for minimizing?
And what if we can’t bear to toss the thousands of cards our sweet students have given us over the years?
To help, I asked my friend Paige Bell to chat with me about becoming a minimalist music teacher, which is a passion we share. Paige teaches in Dallas, has a band called Narwhals and Waterfalls (that does great work with social-emotional learning), and runs the Simple Music Teaching blog. What’s more, she is awesome and joyful as you’ll hear in this episode. You’ll also walk away with some great ideas for simplifying your classroom, your teaching, and your life.
This Episode Is Also Available On:
- Simplify. Simplify. Simplify.
- Comparison is the thief of joy
- Shape your program based on the passions that you have
- Don’t people please: do what you love
- Simple Music Teaching
- The Cornerstone for Teachers
- Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less
- Becoming Minimalist Blog
- Organized Chaos
- The Brendon Show
- High Performance Habits
- Narwhals and Waterfalls
- The Professional Music Educator Blog
- Try SmartMusic for Free