Teaching Philosophy

 

As a violin instructor, I have been greatly influenced by my mentors, Mimi Zweig, Dr. Brenda Brenner, and Dr. Metro Kozak. In their teaching practice, they instil the importance of establishing a healthy technical/musical foundation with all students within a nonjudgmental teaching environment. Through this perspective, I believe that the quality of instruction from the outset of study affects all future development and potential for musical artistry. As an instructor, I encourage my students to strive for excellence, view music education through a lens that nurtures their personal wellbeing, and solve challenges through experimentation and metacognitive analysis. I also believe that all students pursuing a music degree should be exposed to a variety of pedagogical lenses and methodologies in order to successfully teach young beginning students, either within the school system, through private instruction, or through community music programs. I am passionate about teacher education, as this subsequently affects the next generation of young musicians.

As an educator, I am passionate about teacher training with respect to string pedagogy and teaching young students. In postsecondary classroom settings, I strive to instil this passion in my students so that they feel driven to pursue excellence in their own teaching, regardless of the situation or setting. I believe that it is essential that all postsecondary music students (performance or education) develop an understanding of how to teach technical/musical concepts in appropriate and meaningful ways, while preparing to face the realities of the teaching profession. I present pedagogical concepts in a holistic manner, where students are introduced to a wide variety of musical experiences: critical thinking, creativity, skill development, problem solving, applied activities, and arts advocacy. I firmly believe in an interactive setting, where students feel comfortable to think critically, ask questions, learn from their peers, and actively pursue a deeper understanding of the given curricular content. This is encouraged through small group conversations, larger group interactions, and opportunities for students to present their understanding of materials to their peers through videos and in-class demonstrations/rehearsals, and YouTube listening/watching assignments. As a result, students are able to transfer the knowledge acquired in the classroom to other disciplines, practice engaging in various life skills, and acquire effective practice strategies and communication tools that can be implemented in the future in a variety of settings. Within a nonjudgmental classroom atmosphere, students embrace their personal learning style, feel respected as both musicians and scholars, and process constructive feedback/evaluation in a healthy manner.

I view music education as a rewarding profession with profound influence and responsibility at every stage of the process. As an educator, I strive to have a lasting effect on my students’ personal and professional wellbeing. I believe that students at any age and level of proficiency must be encouraged to engage in their learning, set healthy goals, nurture their sense of self-efficacy by celebrating all accomplishments, and develop lasting friendships with peers who share similar interests. I consider my weekly lessons with students as an opportunity to communicate effectively, reward efforts through encouragement, and challenge potential. I value and honour this responsibility and make every effort to create an atmosphere that fosters emotional wellbeing and a positive space to explore musical ideas in a nonjudgmental manner. I am passionate about music education, violin pedagogy, and in particular, teacher education, and I hope to leave a lasting influence on the next generation of musicians and music educators.