I have a music education degree from Transylvania University, with a Master’s and Rank I from the University of Louisville. I am also certified in all three levels of music training in Orff/Schulwerk from the University of Kentucky. I retired from Oldham County Schools, having been chosen as my school’s Teacher of the Year twice. I am still mystified how this can be my 44th year of teaching, as I continue to learn new things every day!
A chance remark to Debbie Houston, past Head of School, led me to apply at Virginia Chance School thirteen years ago. I did not know a thing about progressive education and its benefits to children. I quickly learned that I had stepped into a whole new world of learning, full of wonder and excitement! I am very passionate about music and the joy it can bring to our lives. What a privilege to be able to help our students find their own ways to express themselves through song, dance, and play! Making music is the perfect way to provide active, hands-on, experiential learning opportunities. Students play an active role in discovering, exploring, and thinking as they create their own music and/or make music with friends.
Our beautiful campus allows us to connect music with the great outdoors! Every year, we explore ways that we can use nature to make music. Creating instruments from sticks, rocks, and leaves, we find new ways to express ourselves in song. We also use our class hikes as a way to learn about campfire songs and folk songs, learning about the way early Americans used music to enhance their lives throughout American history.
As a School of Compassion, we use music to explore our love for all peoples, for animals, and our earth. The music repertoire is chosen carefully to ensure that our children are taught to honor and respect all three. We honor the traditions of the families of our student body by studying and performing our Heritage Celebration, a school-wide event in December.
My love of music extends into my life outside of school. I play keyboard for my church and enjoy playing at our local nursing homes. I have four children and ten grandchildren. My entire family is musical, and whenever we are together, you will probably hear the piano, guitar, drums, flute, and more! We even argue over who gets to sing the most fun solo (five golden rings) when we sing “The Twelve Days of Christmas!”