officially back to work…

Today is my first day back to teaching after a semester (and summer) sabbatical. The day I finished teaching last fall was the beginning of this blog project, and I definitely plan to continue. This exercise has been really helpful to me, as typing out my practice, actions and reflections, has given me the opportunity to put out way more content that I ever did with hand written practice journaling. And, I have been able to create a resource that can be of some use to my students… as I said when I started, this really is for me, but it is out there in the world for my students to take what they can from it. Additionally, posting publicly, though I know not many people are regularly reading my posts, has helped me to at least feel more accountable on a daily basis.

So, as I return to work, my goals are:

  • to practice at least 2-3 hours each day, with perhaps one day off a week
  • to maintain a rotation of practicing snare, drumset and mallet percussion (with micro rotations on content, repertoire, and technique)
  • to stay aware of working on myself while I practice (AT)
  • to wake up in the morning with practice and teaching on my mind first, rather than other bureaucratic obligations to my institution


Snare Drum (at home)

Warmup/technique – 8s, stick control with clave accents, double bounces, 5-stroke, 7-stroke, improvised in rudimental style

Sightreading – Les Parks rudimental solo, Bach sonata/partita (on marimba)

Surface Drifts (on campus)

Warmup/technique – DV, SI, SA exercises

Played through all of Surface Drifts and worked on the 5s a bit, without metronome, slowly saying hello to a different marimba. It is a Marimba One, same as at home, but it feels different, sounds different, has different resonance, and I didn’t bring the mallets I have been playing with at home, so… basically, everything was different. It was not hard to adjust, but I did feel myself playing too hard at times and my left elbow was a bit tense.

Overall, I had a great first day back to teaching, and I am really excited that I not only got in a little over an hour of practice, but I also went to the gym after the work day! I must congratulate myself on getting off on the right foot… despite not being able to print my syllabi or login to the computer in my classroom. Who needs that?! 😉

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