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Teaching Philosophy

Love of music is a universal value shared by all human cultures, and children especially
are naturally drawn to its beauty. For a music educator, there is no greater joy than inspiring the
unbridled happiness of a child in song. This moment of joy is why I want to spend the rest of my
life teaching music. Specifically, I intend to teach music to elementary students, with an
emphasis on performance of the vocal music, Orff instruments, recorders, and ukelele. Through
energetic and proactive teaching techniques, my students will develop creativity, deepen their
emotional awareness, learn to express themselves, and experience the pride and joy that derives
from the accomplishment of mastering classical music.
Playing music will be a creative outlet for my students. In music, the interpretation of a
piece varies by individual. Since everyone will have unique opinions, I intend to introduce and
discuss different musical interpretations of the pieces we are learning. Demonstrating a wide
variety of interpretations will naturally encourage the students to think for themselves and
experiment with their own techniques. Incorporating improvisation into my future curriculum is
another method of encouraging students to develop new musical ideas. Finally, I will place the
music instruction within a larger cultural context to relate my class to other disciplines. I plan on
instructing the students how to perform music in a manner informed by and consistent with the
historical context of the piece.
In addition to encouraging creativity, the music techniques I employ will aim to foster an
emotional connection between the music and the young artist. Music elicits strong emotional
responses in all humans, and the role of the teacher is to facilitate an understanding of these
emotions. For example, in teaching vocal music, I will show how smiling produce joyous
emotions to the listener. In addition, I will play recordings of songs and ask the students how it
makes them feel. This heightened emotional awareness will help my students achieve not only a
better understanding of themselves, but also a deeper sense of self-awareness.
With enhanced self-awareness, the students will develop increased confidence and
freedom of expression. In my classroom, I will create an environment where the students are free
to express themselves. Once the class has decided the character of the piece at hand, I will then
tell the students to put their own emotion into their playing by relating it to their own life. This
will be an important aspect of my music classroom because it will be the one of the only times of
the day students are allowed this type of freedom of expression. Through my instruction, the
students will also be able to take what they learned about expressing themselves through music
and translate it to daily life.
The most important part of my instruction will be making music simply fun for the
classroom. When I grew up in public schools, orchestra was always my favorite part of the day.
It is less academic than other classes, so it is a fun break from the regular hustle and bustle of the
school day. To make sure that it is fun for everyone, I will program music that the kids will enjoy
and have a personality to which they can easily relate. In addition, I need to structure the classes
to flow smoothly yet still be entertaining for the students. I, as the teacher, will encourage them
to take great pride in what they have created as musicians.
I truly hope I am able to influence my students lives through my music teaching.
Learning to love music arms the student with critical life skills. I will constantly assess myself to
make sure I am staying true to my philosophy. After all, the overarching goal is to elicit that
moment when the student experiences the delight and self-esteem that arises from making a
beautiful sound.