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I believe that a child learning to play a stringed instrument completes his academic education like no other. A child can better understand MATHEMATICS, especially fractions, by applying what he has learned in the playing of various rhythms on a stringed instrument. A child can actually learn to communicate with a new kind of LANGUAGE by playing a stringed instrument. A child can better understand much about what he has learned in HISTORY and SOCIAL STUDIES by learning how to play various kinds of music from different parts of the world and different time periods. A child can learn much about the SCIENCE of sound, which is acoustics, by playing a stringed instrument. String instrumental music is also PHYSICAL EDUCATION, as there is more muscular, physical movement involved in the playing of a stringed instrument than that of any other musical instrument. And of course, the playing of a stringed instrument is an ART form, as it is a wonderful way to express feelings and emotions. Studies have repeatedly shown that students are smarter, more socially connected, more focused, more disciplined, more physically fit, and happier when they play in a string orchestra. In addition, the playing of a string instrument is not only educational and a worthwhile endeavor, it is also very FUN!
I have been blessed to have had very good rapport with my students over the years and I believe in creating a stimulating learning environment by using much positive encouragement and praise to motivate my students in my lessons and classes. My passion is to complete my students' academic education by teaching them to skillfully and joyfully play a stringed instrument in a homeschool community orchestra that ultimately plays for the glory of God.
I have a Master's degree in Music Education from Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville, with an emphasis in string orchestra music. I studied violin with Dr. Kent Perry and chamber music under Mr. John Kendall, the man who brought the Suzuki Violin Method to the United States from Japan. I also received a String Award from the university in 1979. I have been playing for 50 years. I have played for the St. Louis Philharmonic Orchestra and several chamber music orchestras and quartets. I taught in the public school system for 32 years, and taught many private lessons in that period of time. I taught in the school districts of Parkway, Ferguson-Florissant, and in the Fulton County Schools in Atlanta, GA. I also taught in the Rockwood School District for the last 27 of those years, until I retired in 2014, having 400+ students per year. I have taught at the elementary, middle, and high school levels.
Though I have taught in the public school system for many years, my passion has always been for homeschooling. My daughter, Lisa, was homeschooled for 6 years until she graduated, and since I retired 5 years ago, I have committed the rest of my teaching years and the gifts that God has given me to the homeschooling community. I currently teach in a thriving orchestra program at a homeschool learning center in Troy for the last 4 years, called the Freedom Christian Learning Center, with 25 violin, viola, cello, and piano students.
I love the Lord with all my heart. I was saved when I was 12 years old and I have given my life to God’s service. I am also an elder in my church. The Lord has been very good to me, and I have learned many things. My career in working with young children has been a matter of personal prayer to me over the years.