Spring 2023 Workshop with Matthew Stensrud

Join GRAOSA on March 11, 2023 for a workshop with Matthew Stensrud. The workshop will be held at Nazareth College Arts Center, room A4 from 9am to 2pm.

Title: Playful Procedures: Building a Community of Learners through a Respectful, Responsive, and Inclusive Classroom

With the implementation of responsive and respectful teaching in elementary schools across the country, music educators can be an influential voice in the successful use of this process based, community driven and exploration centered approach. Today, we’ll learn more about how this looks in the elementary classroom and how these ideals are a natural and playful fit in the Orff Schulwerk approach. So let’s sing, dance, play, and learn!

Matthew Stensrud is an award-winning Elementary Music and Movement Teacher and currently teaches PK-4 music and movement at Sidwell Friends Lower School in Washington, DC. He received his Master of Music Education from George Mason University and Bachelor of Music Education from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, is an Orff Schulwerk approved Teacher Educator of Movement, and teaches Movement Levels in South Carolina and Oregon. Matthew is currently on the National Board of Trustees of AOSA as Representative for Region V, was previously on The Orff Echo Editorial Board, and was a key content contributor to the book Responsive Classroom for Music, Art, PE and Other Special Areas. He is also well-known on social media as @MisterSOrff on Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube, and offers newsletters through this website www.mistersorff.com and mentoring, lesson plans, and more on his Patreon page.

All Saturday workshops are from 9:00 am until 2 pm; participants can receive 5 professional development credit hours. Participants must be present for the entire session to receive their PD certificate and/or CTLE credit. Continental breakfast is available from 8:30-9:00 am. Participants can bring a bag lunch or order pizza for lunch. See our membership page for registration information.

2023 Alice Pratt Scholarship

GRAOSA is offering one full scholarship (valued at a maximum of $780) to attend Orff Schulwerk Teacher Training Level I or II at Nazareth College from July 24 – August 4, 2023.  To apply, complete form below by March 30, 2023.  

Scholarship Application

Please note that you must be a current member of GRAOSA, with all dues paid in full, in order to receive the scholarship.  If you have any questions, please email Emily Phillips at EmilyLPhillips@gmail.com.  For questions about the Orff levels program, contact Keith Koster at kkoster8@naz.edu, Kathy Sullivan at ksulliv466@naz.edu, or Al Heary at aheary1@naz.edu.

Winter Workshop 2023

Join GRAOSA as they host a Winter Workshop with Wade Richards! Wade’s workshop will focus on the Modes. The workshop will take place in the Medaille Formal Lounge at Nazareth College on January 28, 2023.

Songwriting with the Modes

Musical modes offer a unique and accessible approach to improvisation and songwriting in the music classroom and music therapy.  We will be exploring common connotations, progressions, cadences, and defining notes within modes to open new doors for expressive music-making. Popular music that exemplifies each of the modes will be highlighted as a reference tool. Original modal compositions and songwriting approaches will be shared that include a variety of experiences for different grade levels and learners. You will be immersed in opportunities to practice using the modes to kickstart you own creativity. 

Wade received his bachelor of science degree in music therapy and applied voice from S.U.N.Y at Fredonia, completing his internship at the Broome-Tioga Board of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES) in Binghamton, New York.  He has been providing music therapy services in the Greater Rochester, New York area for close to 30 years.  

In 1995, Wade established his own private practice and business called Time for Music.  Through Time for Music, Wade and other music therapy subcontractors, provided music therapy services for a variety of school districts and charter schools in Wayne, Livingston, and Monroe County, as well as, several area Montessori Schools, and various agencies in the Greater Rochester area.

Wade also served as Chair of the Music Therapy Department and Orff-Schulwerk Department at the Hochstein School of Music & Dance for 15 years. In 2011, he became Program Director of the Trinity Assistance Corporation Blue Ridge Music Therapy Center.  In 2013, Wade combined his practice with two other local music therapists to open Spectrum Creative Arts in Pittsford.  He continues to offer classes for the Music Education Department at the Eastman School of Music. 

Wade completed the International Training Institute in Neurologic Music Therapy and Advanced Fellowship Training from the Center for Biomedical Research in Music at Colorado State University.  Under the guidance of Dr. Louise Montello, Director of Creative Arts Therapy Certificate Program at the New School and Director of Psychology at New York University, he completed Level I and Level II training in Performance Wellness. He completed his Orff-Schulwerk level courses from the Eastman School of Music, the University of Kentucky, and Arizona State University. 

All Saturday workshops are from 9:00 am until 2 pm; participants can receive 5 professional development credit hours. Participants must be present for the entire session to receive their PD certificate and/or CTLE credit. Continental breakfast is available from 8:30-9:00 am. Participants can bring a bag lunch or order pizza for lunch. See our membership page for registration information.

Fall 2022 Workshop

Join GRAOSA on September 24, 2022 for the first workshop of the year. The workshop will be led by Patrick Ware and will be held at Nazareth College in the Arts Center room A. Patrick will be presenting on singing in the Orff Classroom.

Patrick Ware – The Joy of Singing

Singing in the Orff Classroom

Let us make a joyful noise with our first instrument. Come join us as we
make music with our voices. We will experience songs, games, raps and
rhymes from grades K-5. Let us enjoy instrumental music, movement
and song all working in harmony.

Dr. Patrick Ware holds degrees from Westfield State University, Radford University and Shenandoah Conservatory. He has been an instructor for movement, recorder and basic pedagogy for various Orff certification programs. Patrick teaches k-5 elementary music in Prince William County, Virginia. Works by Dr. Ware are published through Beatin’ Path Publications.

All Saturday workshops are from 9:00 am until 2 pm; participants can receive 5
professional development credit hours. Participants must be present for the entire
session to receive their PD certificate and/or CTLE credit. Continental breakfast is
available from 8:30-9:00 am. Paticipants can bring a bag lunch or order pizza for lunch.

Spring 2022 Workshop

GRAOSA will host a spring workshop with Lisa Odom (Sullivan) on March 26, 2022 at Nazareth College. The workshop will be held in Medaille Hall at Nazareth College’s School of Music from 9am to 2pm. The GRAOSA board asks that masks continue to be worn for this workshop.

Lisa Odom (Sullivan) began teaching K-2 music at Madison School in Skokie, IL in August 2017.  Previously, Lisa taught K-5 music at Mohawk Trails Elementary in Carmel, IN for 28 years.  In 2017, Lisa was named the Elementary Music Teacher of the Year by Indiana MEA and in 2008, she was named Carmel Clay Teacher of the year.  She holds a BM from Butler University and a MAE from Ball State University and published a teacher resource during the summer of 2014 titled Playing with Improvisation: Technology with Integrity in the Orff Classroom.  Lisa served three years as the Region VI representative for AOSA and has presented at multiple NAfME, AOSA, and IMEA conferences.  During the summer months, Lisa teaches Orff Schulwerk Levels, and Orff Curriculum at Anderson University in Anderson, IN and DePaul University in Chicago, IL.

Workshop Title

Modal Sounds for Young’uns & Active Listening Lessons


Modal materials doesn’t have to be saved for your older students!  This part of the session will present modal folk songs and original elemental songs that can be used with students in K-2.  Students will sing, play, dance, and play instrument accompaniments adapted specifically for primary ages.  Come enjoy the plethora of sounds that you can share with your young’uns! The 2nd part of the session will be an introduction to the integration of body percussion and movement to orchestral works!  Through the use of visual media we will explore the form through body percussion, leading us ultimately to a full dance. We will also explore speech to use in a game along with an orchestral music.  Come experience active listening lessons, which make these wonderful works accessible to children.

Winter Workshop

GRAOSA hosted an excellent winter workshop with Connie Van Engen at Nazareth College on January 22, 2022. Enjoy these pictures of movement, creation and instrument playing!

Winter Workshop

The GRAOSA winter workshop will be January 22, 2022 at Nazareth College with Nazareth Orff-Schulwerk Level II instructor Connie Van Engen from 9 am to 2pm. The workshop will be in person in the Nazareth College Shults Center Forum Room and will follow Nazareth College’s Covid protocols. If you plan on attending, please check your email for updates throughout the week in case of changes.

Sound Structures for Creative Musicians

Improvisation is central to the Orff Schulwerk approach and provides students with opportunities to create and grow as musicians. As an educator, planning improvisational experiences for students can be intimidating. Through active participation, collaboration, personal reflection and group discussion, we will explore several structures designed to move students from imitation and exploration to improvisation and creation.

Connie Van Engen is the music specialist at Bell Prairie Elementary and was named Teacher of the Year in 2013 for the North Kansas City schools. She has served as AOSA Region III Representative and Recording Secretary. She is the National Conference Chair for the 2022 AOSA Professional Development Conference in Kansas City. Connie is an active presenter in the Orff Schulwerk approach. She teaches Level II Orff Schulwerk Basic Pedagogy at Trinity University in Texas, Baker University in Kansas and Nazareth College in New York