Finnegan Begin Again


Kanisha Howard
Roger Sams
Gerard Stokes
David Thaxton 

This timely, pre-recorded webinar features right-now lessons for supporting teachers and students in musical co-creation within a diversity of settings. Together we use the folk song Michael Finnegan as a springboard for music and movement learning activities that explore possibilities for active music making and creating today. This webinar includes

  • singing activities for those who are distance learning and/or are in environments where singing is deemed safe,
  • bucket drumming,
  • self-space safe movement,
  • rhythmic composition that can be done in-person, distance, or hybrid,
  • pool noodle play,
  • a simple finger-picking ukulele lesson,
  • and layered speech ostinati to remind you to be gentle with yourself, that could serve as inspiration for a lesson with your students.

Whoa! That’s a lot in an hour!

You will receive:

  • Access to pre-recorded video of the webinar

  • PDF handouts with scores

  • Copy of Google Slides presentation

  • Short demonstration videos to use in your teaching

Our Team:

Kanisha Howard teaches elementary general music in Dekalb County, Georgia. She is a graduate of Reinhardt University with over 15 years of experience in vocal and instrumental ensembles, percussion, conducting, and sound production. She has been a guest conductor at Reinhardt University, Jasper First Baptist Church, and the Spivey Hall Children’s Choir. Ms. Howard has performed with both choral and instrumental ensembles at state and national conventions and was assistant director of Dynamix Orff Ensemble of Dekalb County at the Midwest Band and Orchestra Clinic in Chicago in December 2018. Ms. Howard served as moderator for D.R.E.A.M.S (Diversity, Resources, Equity, and Anti-Racism for Children’s Music), online professional development held in July 2020. Ms. Howard believes in developing character by teaching the whole child through the joy of music. She is committed to providing an open and honest atmosphere for students (and teachers) to love, learn, grow, and express the emotions of life within the safe space we call music. She plans to continue growing as a music educator and clinician.

Roger Sams retired from the music classroom in 2013 after 31 years of teaching music in public and private schools. He has served as adjunct faculty, teaching methods courses and supervising student teachers at Cleveland State University and has been on the faculty in teacher education programs at the University of St. Thomas, Cleveland State University, Akron University, the University of Montana, University of Missouri-St. Louis, and other venues throughout the US. Roger is a regular presenter at state, regional, national, and international conferences, has served on the AOSA National Board of Trustees, and has worked with teachers in Canada, China, Indonesia, India, South Korea, Poland, Spain, and Scotland.

Trained in Gestalt therapy, Roger is interested in the power of choice in the artistic process, teaching, and life. He is the co-author of “Purposeful Pathways: Possibilities for the Elementary Music Classroom” and “Percussive Play.” He has published works for children’s choirs in the “Crooked River Choral Project” series and a collection of rounds and partner songs entitled, “A Round My Heart.” 

Gerard Stokes is currently the Music Education Specialist at Whitesville Elementary School. Prior to this position, Gerard served as General Music Specialist at R.E. Davis Elementary School, Director of Choral and Instrumental Studies at Mayewood Middle School, and Assistant Director of Bands and Director of Jazz Studies at Crestwood High School. He has 18 years of teaching experience in public schools (11 years teaching band in both middle and high school, 6 years teaching middle school chorus, 10 years teaching general music). Gerard is a multi-instrumentalist who began his music learning journey at the age of 6 on the alto horn and trombone at his place of worship. During his experiences as one of the leaders in the worship band, he learned all of the brass and woodwind instruments. Gerard now serves as the Chapter President for the Lowcountry chapter of The American Orff-Schulwerk Association.

David Thaxton is from Sparks, Nevada where he is currently in his 26th year teaching Elementary music to pre-K through 6th grade.

As an AOSA certified teacher trainer for Orff Level I, II, and III pedagogy and Level II recorder, David teaches Summer Courses for the University of Nevada, Reno, the San Diego Summer Orff Course, and VanderCook School of Music in Chicago. David has presented workshops and clinics at local, state and national level, frequently presenting for Orff chapters throughout the country.

He also serves as President of the Sierra Nevada Chapter of AOSA where he was co-founder of the Sierra Nevada Orff Festival. He has served on the Editorial Board of The Echo Journal of the American Orff Schulwerk Association and the monthly online publication, Reverberations. David is currently Treasurer for the American Center for Elemental Music and Movement. He has been the Creative Director and Lead Clinician for the Four Corners Young Musicians Summer Camp in Durango, Colorado since 2015.

David was also recently awarded the “Spotlight Educator Award” for the Winter of 2017 from the American Center for Elemental Music and Movement (ACEMM). He is excited that his new book “Making Tracks: Recorder Explorations, Creations and Improvisations” was recently published through Sweet Pipes.



one time payment

All registrants will receive access to the recording of the workshop, handouts with lesson ideas and musical scores, as well as downloadable videos.

Certificate of completion can be provided to participants who request one for professional development hours.


"Thank you for the wonderful workshop ... I truly enjoyed the different activities and I can use a lot of ideas with my classes."

Karin M.
Elementary Music Teacher

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