About Ms. Lawlor...
Position: Orchestra Teacher
Hello! Welcome to Willis Junior High School! My name is Miss Lawlor and I am the orchestra teacher. I am looking forward to a wonderful school year!
My Education and Professional Background
Miss Lawlor studied viola under Jacquelyn Schwandt at NAU where she earned her Bachelor’s degree in Music Education. While attending NAU, she was an active member in the NAU Symphonic and Chamber Orchestras. Miss Lawlor also participated in the Suzuki training program at NAU. In her youth, she was a member of many orchestral groups including, the Arizona Youth Symphony, the East Valley Youth Symphony, and the Mesa Community College Community Orchestra. She also studied piano for 13 years under the instruction of Franchesca Retford. Before attending NAU, she was an assistant Suzuki strings instructor with Kevin Huang, a professional violinist from Julliard, and she volunteered at Blackbird Music Studio teaching a Suzuki violin class on Saturday mornings. Before joining the Chandler Unified School District, Miss Lawlor was an orchestra director at Queen Creek Middle School and Gateway Preparatory Academy. Miss Lawlor has been teaching orchestra at Willis Junior High School since 2017.
My Educational Philosophy
Music is an academic discipline. It incorporates aspects of math, language, history, reading, and science. It exercises the entire human brain with lessons in technique, rhythm, vocabulary, and note reading. Students who participate in musical instruction benefit across all academic subjects. I believe every student can learn to appreciate music. Music transcends all other forms of communication. Student participation in orchestral groups encourages an environment of teamwork and self-discipline. It is exciting to watch students of varying abilities come together to achieve a common musical goal. It is my job to help students discover their individual musical potential and to help them develop a lifelong appreciation for this dynamic art.