At Encore Tours, we value the passion, countless hours of work, compassion, talent, and care that music teachers across the country dedicate to their students every day. The impact you as music educators have on your students is important and lasting, and you deserve to be recognized year-round. However, Teacher Appreciation Week is a special time of the year where the entire country recognizes teachers for the amazing work you do.
In honor of Teacher Appreciation Week, we're sharing stories about the music teachers who have helped shape our lives.
“My music teachers have absolutely helped shape who I am today. They invested countless hours into my education and in driving me to and from playing opportunities. They taught me the value of hard work and practice. My music teachers continue to play important roles in my life and I couldn't ask for better role models and friends.”
“Being in choir and band all through school was incredibly important for me because I was an anxious student growing up. My choir teacher Mrs. Kenlan had an especially big impact. As my private voice teacher, as well as my school choir director, she got to know me personally and was instrumental in helping me work through my self-doubt and self-critical behavior. She encouraged me to build confidence in myself in and outside of the classroom. I know a lot of the self-assuredness I have developed can be traced back to her teaching me to believe in myself and my skills. By showing me that I could achieve my goals in music she gave me the courage to reach for what I wanted in all areas of life, and because we shared that connection to music, she was able to reach me in a way that other teachers couldn’t. Music is such a collaborative experience that music teachers have a unique position to make a real impact in the lives of their students.”
“When I was in 1st grade, our elementary school didn’t have the funding for a full-time music program. But what we lacked, we made up for with our powerhouse teacher Mrs. Basil. She sang through the halls, toting along her musical cart from class to class and was our teacher until high school. She was hilarious, energetic, and open-minded to all music types. She seemed to find a teaching opportunity with any genre and connected music to life outside the classroom. As we got older, she challenged us to truly think about the music we listened to and performed. And as such, she built up our music education program and continued to inspire countless student’s lives until she retired. She was my very first music teacher – and because of her dynamism, her creativity, and her ability to make young students love learning music, she was the first of many. We all start somewhere, and I’m so thankful I got to start with Mrs. Basil. “
“My first trumpet teacher, Jim TenBensel, was actually a trombone player and the uncle of one of my best friends in 6th grade. My friend was taking lessons at his grandmothers house just down the street so I decided to give it a try as well. Mr. TenBensel’s genuine enthusiasm for music and teaching got me excited about learning an instrument and even practicing. With his encouragement I was able to make progress fairly quickly and the rest is history as they say. I’m not sure if I would have had a career in music if not for his help in getting me started off on the right foot.”
“When I was young, I was in an auditioned children’s chorus called Oakland Singers. It was a serious, hardworking, high quality choir and I felt very special to be a part of it. The conductor was a woman named Catherine Brodie, who was a wonderful teacher but strict, in a good way. She pushed us to stay focused, practice correct technique, and encouraged us to try for solos. Without a doubt those lessons stayed with me through my high school and college years and helped me become a better singer, and helped me achieve better parts and roles. I have lots of fond memories of singing with Mrs. Brodie and her choir!”
“Dedicated teachers freely give their students the keys to open the doors to two worlds: the world within, and the world we inhabit. “
From all of us at Encore Tours, thank you to our music teachers and to music teachers everywhere. Happy #TeacherAppreciationWeek!
For resources to help take your music program to new places – whether places refers to exciting destinations or supporting your music programs at home – subscribe to our Backstage Blog and check out our Music Educator Resources Center.