As a teaching artist, Thad presents arts infusion programs in hundreds of elementary and middle school classrooms each year, teaching curriculum-related topics through music. He has conducted more than 300 long-term residencies during his career as a roster artist for multiple state arts council programs and has worked with numerous arts organizations, including KU Lied Center Art.Teach, Accessible Arts, Kansas Wolf Trap and Wolf Trap Institute for Early Learning Through the Arts programs.
Thad's residencies bring creative musical opportunities to all ages.
Thad's residencies provide participants up-close and personal experiences for a more in-depth understanding of creative processes for students and easily accessible strategies for teachers. Residencies come in a variety of forms and are designed for those involved. Choose one of the following residency topics, or work with Thad to design one unique to your community.
Kindergarten through Sixth Grades:
Thad's Band in a Bucket/Singing Science Residencies include demonstrations and instruction on how to play old-time and unusual instruments, such as the bucket bass, washboard, shakers, can drums, limberjack and flyswatters. Grades K-2 experience Life Cycle Songs and older groups go Down in the Swamp to transform their classroom into living, breathing, singing swamps. Sessions may include songwriting, language arts, performing, creative drama and movement.
Nebraska the 37th Star features original songs about Nebraska history and heritage. While learning the history of their state, students sing along, play in the band and create their own unique classroom performance. Includes guitar, harmonica, limberjack, washboard, bucket bass, fiddle, banjo-uke and Plains Indian flute.
The Songsmith Songwriting Residency has core groups learn skills involved in the song creation process, including lyric writing and music exploration, and may include researching topics, using oral history interviews and questionnaires, all while exploring topics of Nebraska history, heritage and culture. Residency outcomes may yield student performances, publications, artwork or audio/video recordings.
Middle School - Fifth through Eight Grades:
Dust Bowl Remix - A program for middle school students that involves comparing and re-writing the lyrics to relate to modern day themes and performing the re-written lyrics with simple rhythm and string instruments. The program begins with a slide show introduction to the Dust Bowl and live performance of original songs. This is a one session class visit.
Postcards from the Dust Bowl - Students experience the "Dirty Thirties" by listening to live performances of a collection of original. Students invent a persona and write about their character's experiences during the dust bowl, sketch and create postcards. This residency/workshop follows a Dust Bowl Remix session and needs 3-4 class sessions to complete.
Core Residencies can be combined with a single Classroom Artist Visit or Performance Residency for non-core or community groups.