Currently, I am in Palo Alto Unified School District where I teach elementary strings to an amazing group of students! Before this, I was the Violin, Orchestra, and Music Appreciation/Theory instructor at Yew Chung International School in Mountain View. Each student at Yew Chung is required to learn violin in Kindergarten through third grade. This position lead to my research for my Master‘s Thesis, which examines the teaching of kindergarten violin classes as part of a school’s curriculum.
Prior to this position, I was an orchestra teacher for the Paradise Valley Unified School District, in Phoenix Arizona. I was responsible for the string music programs at three elementary schools, a middle school, and a high school. I participated in state music festivals, reinforced theory and aural skills, and prepared my students for multiple school and public performances. In addition, I mentored a student teacher.
While in Arizona, I was an active member of the Tempe Symphony Orchestra; led string bass sectionals for the Phoenix Youth Symphony’s Symphonette Orchestra, and String Orchestra, and was chosen by a director to be the substitute rehearsal conductor. I also conducted string bass clinics at various high schools and festivals around the Phoenix area. Additionally, I maintained a successful private lesson studio. Many of my students auditioned and were selected for youth and festival orchestras.
In 2011, I moved to the Bay Area and began a new and rewarding position at Yew Chung International School. My success as a teacher is due to my philosophy as an energetic music educator. I feel it is necessary to teach technique, theory, and skills as outlined in the National Standards and use creative approaches to learning. Through the understanding of music’s technical aspects, students develop enthusiasm for music and an appreciation of art; attributes that will serve them well their entire lives.
In addition to research on school day kindergarten violin instruction, as part of my Master’s Degree from San Francisco State University, I have co-authored, with Dr. Margaret Schmidt from Arizona State University, a published paper titled “A Teacher’s Childhood”. The paper examines the educational development of music educators from college through their first years of teaching. I have presented the paper to the Narrative Soundings International Conference, Narrative Inquiry in Music Education (NIME2) in 2008 and at the Arizona Music Educators Conference in 2010.