My parents were/are life long learners. They set an example of reading, sharing information, taking continuing education, visiting museums, …the list goes on. That love of learning lives on in me. The number of books waiting on my shelf as well as on wish lists is fairly long and varied in content. There are lots of continuing education opportunities I’d like to afford myself during the next several years. And, next week I will be attending the American Music Therapy Conference in Cleveland, Ohio. There are three continuing education sessions are on my list along with a few pre-picked sessions to attend. The opportunity to walk through booths filled with instruments, resources, and books along with visiting with other music therapist excites me. I always come away from conferences amazed by the knowledge I’ve gained and the people I’ve met.
But, it isn’t just conferences where I learn. This fall I started taking guitar lessons for the first time since methods class in college. Doing so increased my finger strength and taught me many new chords. The best part is the joy I have when I complete a practice session. I had forgotten how it feels to learn something new vs. working out music for sessions or community groups. It is a totally different feel. The best part is having a teacher who encourages noodling (improvisation) time.
Our daughter is a freshman in high school. She is already talking about pursuing a master’s degree. She too loves to read. And, she is always voicing a desire to learn to play a new instrument. So, I think the learning bug has been passed on to her.
The fact is learning can be fun. I’ve had a few friends share memories of dinner time conversations centered around a new fact each family member learned during the day. (Often this required running to the encyclopedia or dictionary immediately before the meal.) The amazing part is how many of these facts those people still share while wearing a smile.
Here’s an example of my fun find of the day: using Blackbird Pie!
Challenging myself and those with whom I work is often important. I like sharing facts about places and things as we share songs. Learning information about events from the participants is another joy I try to include in my sessions.
Ask/complete the following items of yourself and those around you in the next few days seeing what you discover:
- I get excited when I learn about ________.
- What fascinating fact have you learned today?
- What would you like to know more about?
Until next time, happy learning!