2018 Sessions

The following sessions were presented at the 2018 Saskatchewan Music Conference. The organizing committee is already hard at work planning next year's event, so please keep checking back for updates.

Joseph Naytowhow
nêhiyawatamowin nâtawihowin: The Healing Gift of Sacred Song & Sound
After a 13 year disconnection from nêhiyaw itapsinowin (Cree worldview) the sound of the drum awakened Joseph back in 1974. Joseph is forever indebted to the drumming tradition that he was introduced to through Fred Hill from the Umatila Nation and Leroy B. Selam from the Yakima Nation from the state of Washington, USA. He also credits his Jewish brother Ken Cohen for inspiring him to research and learn his own Cree roots for the nehiyo-atamowin (Cree sound). Re-connecting to the original Cree sound and song could never have happened in any other way. In his keynote address, Joseph will explore what happens when a culture is forbidden to express itself due to government policy. Eventually finding his voice through a return to nehiyo itapsinowin (Cree worldview) and a Pan-Indian movement, his voice has sounded the rhythms and drum beats throughout Mother Earth since. 

Additional Sessions by Joseph Naytowhow

Music As Tradtional Lifestyle: Introduction to nêhiyaw/Cree Voice and Movement
(repeated session)
“piciciwin” means ‘’stepping into” suggesting that while we circle dance, we also invite our ancestors to join. It is the Cree way of dealing with loss as well as being one of the few traditions that has not become commercialized. Using percussion instruments and voice, come and learn how to sing in nêhiyowewin pikiskwewin (Cree language). Brothers and sisters bring your hand drum and hitting sticks! We will finish with an authentic nêhiyaw/Cree round dance.
NOTE: Please bring a hand drum and hitting sticks, if you have them!


Kevin Junk
Answers to Band Instrument Repair Questions
In this session Kevin Junk will show and discuss easy repairs any band director can do with minimal equipment and field any specific questions that may arise.


Lynn Kleiner
A Beginning Recorder Story, Why Mosquitos Buzz
The story provides playful opportunities for singing, playing, moving and creating. Rotating to the different Orff parts gives all students a chance to be challenged as they have plenty of repetition to master new recorder skills and improvisation. Opportunity for drama too!
NOTE: Please bring a recorder, if you have one!

Games, Props, Orff and Recorder for Older Elementary Students
A tune from Puerto Rico, and one from Ireland, offer students something unique and challenging on Orff and recorder with a lot of fun using cups, balloons, whirly tubes and more.
NOTE: Please bring a recorder, if you have one!

On Our Trip....Sing, Play, Move and Create (repeated session)
Learn to use a delightful mountain theme for Orff, pitch matching, puppets and imagination. Introductory activities for the youngest students.

On Our Trip...Continued
The magical trip to the mountains continues with singing games, Orff activities, movement, and props. Additional challenges are presented in playing and reading rhythm and melody for the youngest grade levels. Presented in a game-like atmosphere with a beginning recorder activity too.


Michael Kurpjuweit
What I Find Useful After 10 Years
Create your own resources for Orff, choir, ukulele, or band class using notation software, the Microsoft office suite and other programs most school boards have on their staff laptops.  Then take a little play session with iPad and some student projects for looping/composing for those of us lucky enough to have devices available.
NOTE: Delegates please bring their own device (laptop/ipad/phone) and headphones. Depending on their project, they might want an instrument of any kind. A limited supply of devices and instruments will be available.

Ukulele - Tips, Tricks and Resources
After several years of playing and teaching, these are my best pieces of advice for playing and teaching ukulele to get results.
NOTE: Delegates should bring their own ukulele as there is a limited supply available.


Kendra Worman, Kurt Gillett and Lynda Oliver
Music 10, 20, 30 Curriculum Renewal
Renewal of the Music 10, 20, 30 curriculum began in February 2018. Since that time, a small group of teacher-writers have been seconded from their school divisions for several days to begin drafting the renewed curriculum documents. The renewed Music 10, 20, 30 draft curriculum aims to be flexible in design, such that students can perform, improvise, compose, research and experience music through one or more learning contexts or approaches. This session will provide an opportunity for other music educators to have input into the draft outcomes and indicators for the new curricula that will begin piloting in schools in February 2019.


Proudly sponsored by:

Steph Davis and Sean Fitzmaurice
A Symphony of Seasons
Colourful and Crunchy leaves, dancing snowflakes, bright blooms, and radiant sunshine are only some of the examples of contrasting beauty that make up the seasons. This session, geared towards primary music classes, explores the seasons through playing, literacy, singing, composition, movement, and games. Join us as we share a variety of ready-to-use activities that will engage your young learners while they discover the changing seasons through music!

Learning through Light
Light presents itself in many forms, as does this exciting session that you won’t want to miss! Get ready to light up the dark in this session geared towards grades 3/4, but easily adaptable for other grade levels. This thematic unit includes Orff arrangements, composition opportunities, fun games, and even bright movement props!
NOTE: Please bring a mini flashlight and soprano recorder to this session.

The Sound of Colour
Experience two truly unique modal pieces for your upper elementary Orff class as we explore the colours orange and blue. With balls bouncing on drums and intense creative movement, Orange is full of intrigue and energy. By contrast, Blue plays with vivid word-painting and serene nature sounds. Immerse your students in the sound of colour!


Chris Judah Lauder
More Drums!
Explore “kid tested” drum pieces that work! Creativity, movement, student assessment and collaborative learning will be emphasized using floor and hand drums. Geared for Grades 4 and up. 

Keep it Elemental (repeated session)
Empower students to identify and compose melodies in an elemental form with suggestions for variations and improvisations. Barred instruments, recorders, singing and movement will be used.


Sarah Sehn
Let’s Get Moving!
If you are looking for ways to bring movement and dance into your life or classroom, then this workshop is for you. This is a fun and easy way to introduce movement and get children moving. No prior movement or dance experience is necessary. The content of this workshop can easily be taught to students of any age. The movement you learn will come out of eight movements also known as the Laban efforts.
NOTE: Dress comfortably and bring a water bottle, please!


Randi Lynn Nanemahoo-Candline
Healing through Dance, Empowering through Education
A reflection of how we can utilize teachings from both the Western and Indigenous schools of thought. It is open to all peoples of all backgrounds, as we can all learn from one another’s ideologies. The discussions will begin by exploring the origin of the Jingle Dress. With an explanation of how the history of powwow dancing acts like a bridge not only for Indigenous people, but for people of all backgrounds to connect with First Nations culture and teachings. The main focus will be on the Jingle Dress and its dual purpose of not only being a noisemaker, but also a symbol of hope and healing for people. This session will discuss how we can utilize the teachings of the Jingle Dress to help us confront and work through contemporary social-economic issues that we face as a society. Topics include (but are not limited to) the importance of self-care and mental health, trauma, grief and loss, and Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls. These are difficult topics to explore, but are important ones to discuss. This session will also provide an opportunity for participants to learn a few powwow dances themselves.


Richard Dubé
Introducing the Indigenous North American Style Flute Into Your Music Program –
A Beautiful, Peaceful and Healing Way Towards Truth and Reconciliation (Gr. 3-5)

Richard will share his traditional knowledge, flute teachings and protocols to follow when teaching the Indigenous North American Style Flute in your classroom. Participants will be guided through making a D major diatonic Indigenous North American Style Flute in 15 minutes (or less). Rich will then demonstrate how he teaches his younger students to play this beautiful instrument that was first created by North America’s First Peoples and use its gentle, soothing sound to help students to connect to the past, the present and onward into the future. The rest of the session will be incorporating the Indigenous flute into songs, games and Orff arrangements. Come hear the sound of the past that can help us heal into the future.

Engaging Your Older Students In Making Music With the Native American Style Flute –
A Beautiful, Peaceful and Healing Way Towards Truth and Reconciliation (Gr. 4-8+)

Richard will start by sharing traditional knowledge and protocols to follow when teaching the Native American Style Flute in your classroom. Participants will see a video of how to make a Mid A pentatonic Northern Spirit Flute from start to finish in 5 minutes. Northern Spirit Flutes will be provided to the first 40 session attendees. Richard will demonstrate how he teaches his senior students to play this gentle, soothing sounding instrument that was created by North America’s First Peoples. The rest of the session will be incorporating the Native American style flute into songs, games and Orff arrangements. Come hear the soothing sound of the past that will help us heal into our shared future.


Ernie Louttit
The Leader in You
A talk based on personal experiences and emphasized through stories to help the audience members see the leadership potential in themselves.


Lawrence Roy Jr
Hoop Dancing
Lawrence Roy Jr will be teaching how to use five hoops with each individual person - making such things as an eagle, snake, butterfly and earth ball. He will be talking about the tradition, history and significance of colours and the circle. 

Proudly sponsored by:

Michael Brandon
Pillars of a Quality Band Program
Your band program is personality driven: it looks like you and contains elements that are very important to you. But what if you thought of your program with the end in mind and worked backwards. What would your ideal program look and feel like from an educator’s and student’s perspective? What kind of musical quality do you want to achieve and what pillars would have to be present to support such a dream. We are going to explore some cultural and pedagogical pillars that can be used to: construct a program with a purpose; design an amazing, quality experience for kids; and create an interactive community. 


Nick Fanner
Fundamentally Flawed?  
While repertoire selection is unquestionably an important consideration in planning for the successful musical development of students and the ensembles in which they play, there are a number of “non-negotiable“ concepts and skills (a.k.a. fundamentals), which must be developed in order for student musicians to grow and develop. Can these fundamental instrumental and musical skills be taught solely within the context of the repertoire? If so, how? If not, what supplemental materials must be utilized in order to develop the skills necessary to create a rich, intellectually engaging music-making experience?


Kenley Kristofferson
Salting the Oats: Intentionally Building a Positive Culture in Secondary School Band Classrooms
For many students, high school is the place where the band room is, or the choir room, or the theatre. We often hear this about our spaces in the arts: There's something special about those rooms, or there's something about those Performing Arts kids – that things are different for us somehow. As non-core programs in our schools, we are consistently building and recruiting, trying to attract kids to be in our programs to give them the most rewarding and artistic experience possible while learning more about themselves along the way. Now, how exactly do we do that?

Well, I found teachers who have strong program cultures of positive morale and high musical achievement, and I asked them: "How are you doing it?" The discussions that transpired explores concrete methods and directions that build positive program culture, from greeting kids at the door and using their name, to more long-term developmental goals for setting up inclusive spaces in the band room. In short; anyone can set up a positive program culture that reflects who they are, and the research backs them up. This presentation studies the intersection of those two facets and is critically important for our kids.


Anya Pogorelova
Diversity in Concert Band Programming
Does diversity matter? How can we address it through repertoire selection? This session will discuss the importance and impact of programming minority composers for bands of all levels. By actively choosing underrepresented and/or female composers, band directors can further enrich student learning and bring value to those who may need it the most. Resources and ideas on how/who/what to program will be provided.


David Wilson
The Wilson Method: Vocal Technique for Choirs & Soloists
Your body informs your voice; the more power, ease and flow we can create throughout the body, the better our vocal abilities. We will make use of bel canto support system pedagogy, restorative yoga, breath therapy, transformative vocal entrainment and core strengthening principles. This workshop is for everyone who wishes to improve their voice. If you have ever had any doubts about your ability to sing high notes, questions about support or breathing for performance success, this is the masterclass for you.    
NOTE: Wear comfortable, loose clothing, bring a yoga mat if you have one (not required) and water.