Teaching Philosophy

I agree with Plutarch’s view that “the mind is a fire to be kindled.” The minds of my students are that fire and it is my job to stoke their intellects and motivate them to become effective learners. My goal is for my students to have a desire to learn and not be satisfied with resting on their laurels. They should be willing and wanting to ask questions about the material and methods I use. I achieve this by showing my students my own passion for the field; I find that this inspires them.

 

I strive to help my students become effective learners; I supply them with the tools to be successful and independent musicians. One way I accomplish this is through student participation and contribution. I respect each student as an individual with unique needs and allow them to discuss their goals and what they hope to achieve from taking private lessons. This allows me to customize the lessons to best accomplish his or her goals. My students decide which pieces they would like to perform, I find this helps them take control of their learning in a much more personal way. I recommend several pieces from which to choose, or in some cases, allow them to pick music more in line with their desires.

 

Being a role model for my students is important to me, both in and outside the classroom. I try to divulge just enough personal information regarding my experiences as a teacher and musician as to be helpful. Through this, I hope to create a bond with my students, so that they can benefit from what I learned in similar circumstances. I do my best to prepare for each lesson by contributing engaging, informative, and creative experiences for my students. I believe in being accountable to my students; through email and by phone I make myself accessible to students in a professional and ethical manner.

 

I have my students record themselves, using both audio and video, in their private lessons to aid in reflecting critically on their performance. I require my students to listen to their recordings and provide feedback and constructive criticism about their playing. I also incorporate recordings of professional musicians; listening to some of the best musicians in my field has made me want to be a better musician and I feel this inspires my students as well.

 

Every student brings a new set of abilities and skills, which makes them unique. I treat every student as an individual and do my best to relate to them on a personal level.


The best way to become a professional is to begin acting and thinking like a professional early in one’s career.