|Subject / Grade:||Orchestra Grades 5-9|
|"The theory of relativity occurred to me by intuition, and music is the driving force behind this intuition. My parents had me study the violin from the time I was six. My new discovery [theory of relativity] is the result of musical perception."|
|-- In a letter from Albert Einstein to Shinichi Suzuki|
Hello orchestra students and parents! Excitement is in the air with the start of a new school year.We are on a journey of education, creativity and leadership. Students at Auxier, Riggs and Casteel have a unique opportunity. Together you form a community that will grow and follow a trajectory of playing ability from the very beginning in grade 5 to advanced playing in grade 12. I am excited to teach and guide you as we create an amazing community of young musicians.
My Education and Professional Background
I attended Northern Arizona University and earned a BME with a dual major in orchestral and choral conducting in education. While at NAU, I studied with Gary Karr and played in numerous orchestras. For choral activities I sang in the Shrine Choir, student conducted the top Madrigal Ensemble and performed in the first cast of Black Bart’s Theater. My first job was teaching in Las Vegas. I was also the Music Director for the Guardian Angel Cathedral and Assistant Conductor of the Nevada Musical Arts Society. I attended graduate school at Claremont and earned a M.Div. and completed all coursework for the D.Min. At graduation I was awarded the coveted Wilshire Preaching Award for communication. I have been with Chandler Unified Schools since 2003 and have been afforded many wonderful opportunities, teaching at different grade levels. I have also been the guest conductor and clinician for the Arizona Elementary All State Orchestra and the Northern Arizona Jr. High All State Orchestra.
My Educational Philosophy
I have high expectations. My educational philosophy is a combination of experiences and education I have obtained over the years. My orchestra teacher instilled me the principles of good playing and musicianship. My high school choir teacher taught me to approach learning and teaching with joy, community and enthusiasm. Finally, I deeply appreciate the teaching of William Glasser and his “Choice Theory.” Some students will work extremely hard to continue on with music past high school. The majority will use music as Einstein did; to promote creative and out-of-the box thinking to help solve the problems they encounter in the world. Whichever category a student chooses, the experience of working hard to create something beautiful and beyond words will be priceless in their life memories. In short, I invite students to work hard, apply self-discipline, be good teammates, have fun and strive to make the Casteel Orchestras among the best in the state.
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