Have you ever been to a national piano pedagogy conference? If you have, you know how energizing it can be to your teaching! If you have not, perhaps it’s because you think it might be too expensive. Well, I’d like to crunch some numbers for you so that you can make it happen this next year! I would love to see you all at the NCKP 2013 conference on July 25-27, 2013 in a quiet suburb of Chicago, Illinois. Here’s how you can make that happen:
First, a little bit of budgeting:
It will only cost approximately $1000 to come to NCKP 2013, and chances are you can get there even cheaper by being careful with food choices and purchasing your plane ticket in a timely fashion. So, how can you make that happen?
Since NCKP happens only every other year, you can save money by increasing your tuition only slightly (or simply putting back these amounts from the tuition you already collect). Here’s how it breaks down.
If you have:
- 20 students – You only need to put back $2.08 per student per month for 2 years to make this happen!
- 30 students – You only need to put back $1.39 per student per month for 2 years to attend.
- 40 students – You only need to put back $1.04 per student per month for 2 years to be a part of this energizing event!
- More than 40 students? What are you waiting for? You’re practically there already, only having to put less than $1 a student back to attend.
If you are coming to the saving process a little late and will only have a year to save, you’ll need to save twice the amounts mentioned above to get there. But again, this can be done fairly easily by cutting a few expenses and purchasing your plane ticket in a timely manner.
So why do I encourage you to attend NCKP when I know that there are other good conferences out there? I attended my first NCKP last year and here is what I noticed and am noticing as I become more acquainted with the NCKP staff and plans:
- It is about keyboard pedagogy! All of the sessions are relavent to the piano teacher.
- NCKP cares about the business of piano teaching. And in today’s age, we know that we need as much business training as we can get to make a living in this field.
- Great care seems to be taken to provide specifically inspiring sessions. The Pedxi, patterned after the TED talks were some of the favorites of attendees in the last year.
- NCKP sessions are forward thinking. The aforementioned Ped XI sessions were a great new way to present novel ideas. If you’ve paid attention to the Clavier Companion in the past few issues, you can see that they are really trying to connect with today’s teacher and find ways of helping us be successful!
- Like MTNA, all the big exhibitors are there. So, you may be paying only $1000 to get to NCKP, but you’ll come away with all kinds of free music (sometimes up to $200-$300 worth).
- The exhibit hall is amazing! So much music to choose from, so many composers and clinicians with which to connect.
- The size of the conference is just right: not too big, but not too small either. The main sessions are for everyone and breakout sessions are for smaller groups. It’s fairly easy to connect with teachers as the size lends itself to a friendly atmosphere.
In addition, you’ll definitely want to read this interesting article by Chad Twedt about actually having your students sponsor you to go to a conference. He makes some excellent points!
How do you make a national conference work in your piano teaching budget? I’d love to hear your tips!