I believe in showing respect and kindness to each student, regardless of the amount of natural, musical or technical ability, while reinforcing the importance of setting goals for growth and improvement. I seek to structure a happy, encouraging and productive environment that makes learning easier and more attainable, as I feel students are more likely to achieve great things when they are relaxed, secure and accepted. I begin every lesson with each student at his or her own level and work with faith and consistency as the student is allowed to make strides at his or her own pace.
It is also my belief that the lesson should be a time for problem solving and helping the student by creating a model for practice which they can remember and use at home. Students should be given meaningful and inspiring tools for real-life musicianship. Lessons include the following:
- Reading and experiencing rhythms
- Aural Development/Listening Skills
- Music Theory
- Music History
- Practice Skills
- Performance Preparation
- Marks of Expression, Tone Quality and Balance
- Imagination and Creativity
- Solo and Ensemble Repertoire (including Baroque, Classical, Romantic, Impressionistic, Modern, Broadway, Pop, Rock, Sacred, Gospel, Rag-Time and Jazz)
- Development of Collaborative Skills
Students are given various opportunities in which to participate that allow them to gain experience in performing and to be motivated to practice. All events may not be suitable for all students. For example, students who are at an advanced level and wish to study music at the college level, competitive events may be beneficial in order to secure scholarship funds and/or to build experience as a performer. Another student may enjoy performing but has no desire to compete. Other students may eventually wish to perform but need to gain more experience developing their skills before committing to an evaluation or audition. Just as repertoire and learning styles differ with every person, so it goes with performing events. More information is available at the "Events" link.
As a piano and voice teacher I feel it is important to continue engaging in professional development. I annually adjudicate for local and state competitive and non-competitive events. Each opportunity I have to judge other teachers' students is educational, inspiring and motivating to me as a teacher. It is a joy to meet other teachers at these events, seminars, workshops, and conferences. I enjoy performing as a collaborative pianist and as a soprano soloist and choir member at my church and across the southeast.
The heart and soul of teaching begins with concern and compassion for people as well as for the calling and desire to inspire, share knowledge and to experience the joy of learning with others. I believe all people can benefit from learning and building musical skills.