Dear ECMMA Friends,
In June of 2004, I set out for Lake Junaluska, NC to attend my first ECMMA Convention. I had recently completed my training and certification in all levels of a leading early childhood music curriculum. I had joined ECMMA in 2001 and decided it was time to check out the convention. I remember walking into the first general meeting and thinking, “many of the leaders and mentors in the ECM field are in this room – what an opportunity!” I came out of each session energized, educated, and inspired. I was amazed at the intelligent, highly skilled, and dedicated colleagues I met at every turn. I decided then and there that if I wanted to grow and develop as an early childhood music specialist, keep up with the field, and stay motivated, that the ECMMA Convention was a “one-stop shopping” experience not to be missed. I am happy to say that since then, I have only missed one convention, and I have found that the standards of professionalism, enthusiasm, and commitment continue to soar higher and higher.
My excitement for the 2018 “Watch, Listen, Play, Create” Convention in Buffalo, NY is greater than ever. Our convention co-chairs, Dr. Kerry Renzoni and Dr. Elizabeth Etopio have built a unique experience. We are invited to investigate the many ways young children can experience and express themselves through music and movement, and then as practitioners explore the joy and fulfillment that come from engaging in innovative teaching practices, learning about current research, posing questions, and learning how to turn those questions into teacher research. We have engaged keynote speakers that are at the forefront of these topics, presenters that are immersed in research and practice, and planned activities for participants to actively watch, listen, play, and create.
As always, Convention is a time for us to gather together, renew friendships, make new relationships, network, encourage, and vision for the future of ECMMA. It is a time for members to engage with the ECMMA Board of Directors so we can hear your voice, discern your values, address your concerns, and plan strategically. It is a time for ECMMA members to interact with general early childhood professionals, to mentor the next generation of early childhood music & movement professionals, and to recruit new members and advocates for young children. All of this in vibrant, revitalized Buffalo, NY, described by the New York Times as “buzzing with life” and designated one of 52 places in the world to visit in 2018!
So, if you’ve never been to an ECMMA Convention, it is time to check it out. If you’ve attended before and are still deciding, it is time to commit and register. If you’ve already registered, it is time to get excited. Don’t miss this chance to contemplate, collaborate, and celebrate. See you in Buffalo!
Keep singing and moving,
Diana Greene, President ECMMA