As an educator, my main goal is to help students discover the process of learning, so that when they graduate, they have the potential to become their own best teacher, in and outside of music. Helping students discover how they learn and how to teach themselves is a cycle that will continue for the rest of their life.
The concepts I teach in my studio can be broken down into three elements; fundamentals, musicality, and self-discovery. Along these lines, my goal is to guide students on the path to mastering aspects.
The mastery of fundamentals is one of the common element that is found in almost every major field. Fundamentals are essentially the basic skills needed to complete a task. As it applies to performing on the trombone, this includes sound, rhythm, intonation, articulation, and style. My goal in this section is to help students develop an awareness of what high-level fundamentals sound like, then guide them into finding the most effective ways to develop, maintain, and consistently integrate them into their playing.
Fundamentals and musical expression go hand in hand, as music isn’t nor shouldn’t, be about perfection. Music is an ethereal aesthetic that can positively impact and enhance life. The development of one's inner voice and musical expression is just as important as the mastery of fundamentals. A great deal of individual lessons will involve guiding the student through the exploration and discovery of their own voice – fulfilling the human need for creativity, discovery, and expression that is vital in our daily lives.
Finally, I attempt to instill a long-lasting growth mindset in my students, I encourage curiosity, open-mindedness, and consistently ask philosophic based questions designed to create a strong sense of intrinsic motivation. These tools, combined with the knowledge gained from fundamental practice, bleed into other domains, and provide a holistic learning approach to any skill we will encounter later on. So whether students decide to pursue music as a profession or a hobby, the practice of music will positively add to their overall quality of life.
Scholarly Writing Sample
Curriculum for MUS E- 502, The Practice of Music Teaching
In this sample, I designed a curriculum around a semester long graduate level course entitled, Mobility for Musicians. This course introduces concepts of human movement science, corrective exercise, and mobility principles. Through weekly application and guided mobility routines, students will learn to apply these concepts to their own lives in an effort to develop body awareness, improve posture by correcting muscle imbalances, and strengthen their body back into alignment.
***Sample Curriculum available upon request***