Teaching

I currently offer private lessons in Yellow Springs.

I am primarily a Suzuki teacher with registered training in violin units 1-8 (pending 9/10 this summer), viola unit 7, as well as many supplemental courses in viola transition, supplemental repertoire, and bow development. I work with students of all ages and levels and specialize in young beginners, 6 and under, and violin to viola switchers. Transfer students may be accepted with audition. I teach the method, not just the books. The early emphasis is on listening and parent participation, with skills built in carefully sequenced units. Review is an essential component allowing musical expression to develop in pieces where the technical foundation has already been carefully laid. There are no techniques in the advanced literature that aren’t foundationally built in the early work. I teach to the end from the beginning.

I have found, through my own homeschooling journey, that the Suzuki method matches well with the (neo)classical philosophy of education. We are joining in the great musical conversation by immersion learning the language of the great composers in the western art music tradition. The Suzuki course, from the early exercises in the first book to the post-grad levels recognized past book 10, matches the ages/stages approach of grammar, logic, and rhetoric levels of instruction as students move from foundational units, to larger connections, to deeper expression.

In my private studio, I have worked with students from just before their third birthday to adults, taking students from the very beginning to graduating seniors past book 10 and every stage in between.

I love Suzuki’s philosophy and his belief that all children are capable of learning – that musical ability is not inborn but can be trained in any child. I have attended summer institutes in Columbus, Santa Rosa, San Francisco, and Stanford. My teacher trainers include Cathy Lee, Allan Lieb, Roger Steig, and Elizabeth Stuen-Walker.

In Daly City, I had the opportunity to work with the wonderful program Harmony Project Bay Area, an El-Sistema inspired program providing instrumental classes and ensembles to underserved students in the San Francisco Bay Area. I taught group and private violin classes as well as conducted elementary and middle school level string orchestra.

I also like to inject exercises and etudes from my own more traditional background. My undergraduate degree included a pedagogy class taught by Curt Sassmanshaus, head of the string department at CCM as well as the Starling String Program. I have also attended workshops in that method. For more about his method, see his wonderful website.

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