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Clarinetist Julie DeRoche’s Keys to Teaching

Clarity, caring and an open mind are essential to help music students get to the next level.

In Clarinetist Julie DeRoche Molds Music into Art, we outlined how DeRoche, utilizes her extensive background in the music industry and teaching to help take her students to the next level of musicianship.

DeRoche, professor and chair for the Department of Music Performance at DePaul University School of Music in Chicago, has been teaching since she was a teen; as a high schooler, she gave private clarinet lessons to elementary school students.

DeRoche says a combination of these tips will open the door to successful teaching and learning.

Explain Methods Clearly: DeRoche recommends that educators clearly explain how and why students should do what is asked of them. “If your methods are precise and thoughtful, they will hear improvement, trust you and do what you ask,” DeRoche says.

Show Students You Care: DeRoche approaches students with discipline and empathy. “Don’t patronize young people by expecting less from them than they can produce,” she says. “Students want to know that you care about their success. As a colleague of mine once said, ‘Put one arm around their shoulder, and use the other to push them out the door.'”

Never Stop Learning: While DeRoche has a set of methods that she’s confident in, she always keeps an open mind to learning more and expanding her knowledge as an educator. “Never think you know it all,” she says. “Teaching is best done while learning.”

Photo Courtesy of Music for All 

This article originally appeared in the 2018 V1 issue of Yamaha SupportED. To see more back issues, find out about Yamaha resources for music educators, or sign up to be notified when the next issue is available, click here.

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