Each school year starts with a wonderful feeling of freshness and hope. This year is no different.
I look at the calendar, filled with promises of new and more interesting jobs, and new students! I will have two classes at St. Margaret’s, and I started teaching violin at the St. Louis School for Ballet, in addition to having some new private students. So far all my new students are wonderful people and I look forward to our time together. I will be making an effort to stay more organized than in the past and be more methodical (in a good way, not in a plodding way) in my approach to teaching.
I am also taking a class on Suzuki Pedagogy. So far each class has shown me how much more I have to learn about teaching. I keep feeling like I have been teaching wrong all these years (my constant fear!) but I certainly hope that isn’t the case. I will be teaching some Suzuki group classes in the near future, and know that that will be a huge learning experience as well. Learning the violin is such a complex thing, and it is a constant challenge to make sure I am telling my students all I need to for them to thrive and grow.
Today I thought of some of my past students from Cleveland, and I really missed some of them. I hope they are all doing well and continuing to enjoy their violin lessons and grow as musicians and people. I can’t believe it has been over a year since I moved. Some of them I taught for close to five years. Someday I hope to have students I have taught for even longer, but for now, that is such a long time…
I have some interesting gigs ahead of me as well. I will be branching out more into “non-classical” performances and I am eager for the challenge. I also hope to play more chamber music than I did last year! And of course the usual orchestra performances, with a few Concertmaster opportunities as well, which should be great fun.
I wonder what else life will bring this year? I hope I will continue to learn and grow, to be a better musician, teacher, and friend.
(This post turned a bit more soul-search-y than I usually feel. Evidently I am becoming more introspective?)
Last two notes: 1) On the advice of a friend, I now possess Gaylord Yost’s Shifting Exercises. 20 pages of nothing but pure shifting…what a great exercise! 2) I just finished a marvelous book. “Mindset” by Carol Dweck. Very interesting, easy read about the “fixed mindset” versus the “growth mindset.” I highly recommend it.