My teaching philosophy centers around an individualized approach, rooted in Self-Determination Theory. The theory takes the perspective that humans are proactive beings with natural tendencies towards growth and development, but that those tendencies require nutrients for effective functioning. Psychological need fulfillment serves as the nutrients for active engagement, involvement and growth, and over forty years of research in many domains, has shown that stronger psychological need support leads to improved performance outcomes and better psychological well-being. Therefore, my aim as a violin teacher is to create an environment for my students, which supports their sense of autonomy (feeling that they fully endorse and want to take charge of their own learning), competence (feeling a sense of growth and effectiveness in their skills on the instrument) and relatedness (feeling a sense of belonging and acceptance).
An understanding of the big picture as well as day-to-day work is crucial, so my approach to lessons and practice is simple and clear. I believe that routine and repetition instill confidence and a tangible sense of progress, but must also be approached with a sense of exploration and discovery. Finally, I believe that in addition to physical practice, performing well on an instrument involves psychological preparation. Therefore, I work to teach my students skills rooted in the social psychological literature of arousal reappraisal, which helps them to positively and adaptively frame to their advantage, the physiological changes that happen to the body during performance. Ultimately, it is my goal as a teacher to give my students the physical and psychological tools they need to continue to teach themselves and to enjoy making music far into the future.
Currently I have a studio of students ranging from 5 years old all the way to 70 years old. Please visit my C.V. and outreach listings below to learn more about my specific teaching experience and the group programs that I offer.