Things I love about teaching

When you realize that “pancake patrol” has finally succeeded in helping your students have straighter wrists…and they sound better!

When you realize that your pre-teen or teenage student needs someone to listen to them complain about their day or their asshole classmates as much as they need somebody to help them work on their shifts and double stops.

When your student gets that happy face when they finally “get” something tough or tricky.

When your students learn a new piece that they really love.

When you play an example for your students and they are blown away by how awesome the violin can really sound…


On a serious note, I lost one of my favorite students today—he was my first student here in St Louis, and now the family has decided not to continue.  I’m sad.  I absolutely loved teaching him, and his mom was awesome too. I will miss them!

On another serious note, does anybody else have the situation in which your adolescent students sometimes confide things in you that aren’t super serious, but yet you think maybe the parents should know?  One of my students seems to be having trouble getting along with classmates at school and there might be a little bit of bullying going on (him being bullied, perhaps)…I try to just chat it up with him and make him feel like a normal, good, decent person, and hopefully to help him realize that IT GETS BETTER but I don’t know if I should do more?  Basically he’s a bit nerdy and socially VERY awkward but has a great heart.  And I think some kids might be very mean to him at school and maybe pushing him around a bit?  Thoughts?  Suggestions? 

3 thoughts on “Things I love about teaching”

  1. Love your list–full of the sorts of things that make me thankful to be able to be a part of something like a child learning to play violin!

    So sorry to hear about the student who is leaving. I hate losing students, too, for whatever reason.

    Re: the student who is having trouble at school–do you know for sure that the parents aren’t aware of the situation? If they aren’t I might try to find an opportunity to suggest to him that he confide in them. That way he’s sort of able to take charge of his situation and know that he can keep you in his confidence at the same time…just a thought.

  2. I actually do think his mom knows about the situation, at least to some extent. But that’s a good suggestion to keep in mind. The student is fairly new to me, so my thought is that if he is talking to me about it, he’s probably talking to his folks as well–

  3. I couldn’t agree more about teaching. The students a-ha moments are what make it all worth it. I also love researching different techniques and trying them out. So many teachers become complacent and stop gaining knowledge or maybe lose their love or passion for teaching. You are so full of life and it shows in everything you do. Thank you for sharing your thoughts!

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