Mini Learning Academies

$75 for Members - $99 for members

12:00 p.m.-5:00 p.m. (note the "MusicScores!" Pre-K Literacy/Violin Program Mini-Learning Academy, it has a different schedule)

Tuesday March 1-Wednesday March 2

"MusicScores!" Pre-K Literacy/Violin Program
Join us for a pre-conference featuring “MusicScores!” an innovative Pre-K violin program operating within Head Start centers in Collier County, Florida. This program’s philosophy, curriculum and lesson structure will be shared, and participants will visit pre-K Head Start violin classes, meeting the teachers and support groups that have helped establish the program. Learn how “MusicScores” is helping close the school readiness gap between children from low income and affluent communities. The program has been in existence in one site for eight years and recently expanded to several other Collier County Head Start centers. In the 2015-16  school year, over 400 Head Start children will receive violin instruction.


Tuesday, March 1st

Participants fly into Fort Myers, Florida (RSW Airport) Lodging will be near Florida Gulf Coast University.
Approx. Cost $180 (University rate)
Tuesday evening session
:  Hosted by Florida Gulf Coast University
Overview of MusicScores! Philosophy; Curriculum; Lesson structure; Collier County Public School administrators
Pre-K classroom teachers and violin instructors will provide benefits and data on program.

Wednesday morning: Collier County Public School Head Start Centers
Participants will be bused to visit two Head Start centers to view pre-k violin classes in session. Lunch with Q&A time

Wednesday afternoon
Participants will be bused to Tampa and ASTA Conference.

** Attendees of the MusicScore session are advised to fly into Fort Meyers, FL (RSW) on Tuesday March 1 and make your return flight home from Tampa Airport. Transportation will not be provided back to Fort Myers  after the conference. You will be bused from Fort Myers to Tampa on Wednesday afternoon.  You must sign up for this session no later than January 5th. Limited space available.
Hotel Information for Tuesday, March 1
Days Inn & Suites Fort Myers Near JetBlue Park
10150 Daniels Pkwy, Fort Meyers, FL 33913
Rate is Aproximately $179
Reservations 844-277-8519

Wednesday March 2, 2015 - 12:00 p.m.-5:00 p.m.

2020 Vision: Strengthening String Teaching, Mentorship, Opportunities, and Culture
The National String Project Consortium (NSPC) is a coalition of String Project sites across the nation dedicated to cultivating new generations of highly qualified string educators and ensuring a vibrant, secure culture of string-music education opportunities for youth and adults across the nation. Whether you are actively engaged in a String Project, interested in starting one, or simply want to learn to be a better string educator and advocate, you’re invited to attend! This interactive session centers on the NSPC’s new strategic plan, 2020 Vision, and will feature topics relevant to all string educators such as teacher effectiveness and preparation, advocacy, program sustainability, administrative tools, and more. While this session will be centered on best practices in String Projects, it is relevant and open to all educators, administrators, college students, and enthusiasts that would like to be motivated, guided, and trained to better ensure a dynamic landscape of string-music education in our nation.
Moderator:Amy Gillingham, Northern Kentucky University

An Integrated Approach to String Teaching
A group of affiliated teachers from Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, Peabody Institute of Johns Hopkins University, Northwest Strings at Northwestern University, the String Academy of Wyoming, the University of Wyoming, the String Academy of Wisconsin at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and Maryland Talent Education will present an effective, eclectic and evolving approach to string teaching. Drawing from an approach developed by Mimi Zweig which incorporates the pedagogy of Shinichi Suzuki, Paul Rolland, Tadeusz Wronski, Ivan Galamian and others, presenters will address various topics including developing a personal teaching philosophy; providing a healthy beginning; introducing music reading, shifting and vibrato; supplementing the Suzuki repertoire; developing musicianship through integration of technical and musical skills, providing ensemble and solo performance opportunities; and incorporating the approach into a group setting such as the public school string class.
: Sherry Sinift; Mimi Zweig; Rebecca Henry; James Przygocki; Stacia Spencer; Darcy Drexler; Phyllis Freeman
Sponsored by: William Harris Lee

Preparing to be an ASTA Mentor
Preparing to be an ASTA Mentor, will bring together experienced string teachers from across the country to learn about mentoring early career string/orchestra teachers. Topics to be addressed include: the teacher development continuum; mentoring styles; and communication strategies. This hands-on workshop will engage participants in video observation and role-play to facilitate mentor development.
Moderators: Colleen Conway, University of Michigan; Margaret Berg, University of Colorado, Bob Phillips, ASTA Past President

Improvisation; It's Not Just for Jazz! Learn to Teach Melody, Harmony and Accompaniment by Listening, Imitating and Improvising (using any style of music) on String Instruments. No prior Improv Experience Necessary
If you teach Middle School, High School or college, teach at a private studio or are a student teacher of violin, viola, cello, bass or guitar; this session is for you. Tampa area string students will be our guinea pigs (along with ourselves!) for this exciting afternoon session of hands-on learning. Three renowned string teachers will teach improvisation and composition from a non-jazz perspective. Eclectic Electro-Acoustic Violist/Composer Martha Mooke will introduce empowerment and teaching methods using ensemble and peer-to-peer partnering games and exercises. Cellist Mike Block (member of Yo-Yo Ma's Silk Road Ensemble and Director of Mike Block String Camp) will explore playing and learning by ear through modern pop songs. Violinist and composer Andy Reiner will teach tune creation, exploring the compositional side of traditional music by dissecting fiddle tunes.
Presenters: Martha Mooke,Eclectic Electro-Acoustic Violist/Composer; Mike Block, Yo Yo Ma Silk Road Ensemble; Andy Reiner, violinist and composer


ASTA’s Certificate of Advancement program is growing by leaps and bounds. We are now looking for certified ASTACAP adjudicators! Attend this special pre-conference session designed to prepare state officials to train their own judges with and overview of the General Training Course, and continued certification for ASTA members working toward becoming a Nationally Certified Adjudicator in ASTACAP Exams Class B (Levels 3-5) and Class C (6-7). Come join the ranks of certified ASTACAP adjudicators and see what everyone is so excited about. Some training will be required prior to the precon. (Contact to apply for the training courses.) Please see article on page 22.
Presenter: ASTACAP Committee, Kelley Johnson, chair

State Leadership Workshop (invite-only)
ASTA State Chapter Leaders are invited to attend a special ‘by-invitation’ pre-conference event just for our state presidents. The State Leadership Workshop is an important time of leadership training, networking, and professional development. It's an opportunity for chapter leaders to share their expertise and to discover what other chapters are doing, in addition to learning about important leadership issues for ASTA chapters. Up to two representatives from each state chapter are invited to attend the workshop. More information will be forthcoming. For questions, please contact Amanda Bernhardt, membership/state services manager, at