TEACHING PHILOSOPHY

There is a few type of students: those who are very talented and would learn from whomever is teaching them, those who have average potential but love to play and practice, those who have potential, lack a positive attitude, and play violin because it is their parents desire, and finally, those who do not have either potential or positive attitude but the parents want them to play the instrument. I embrace all type of students because I believe playing an instrument and being part of an ensemble is one of the best experiences children can have, and most important playing an instrument give the individual abilities that would be useful for the rest of their life. 

I believe in being very direct about the level of playing in lessons. While being in the United States I have had teachers who after I played, either very good or very bad, they say “It’s great” followed by a “but”. I believe the word “Great” should not be along with “But”. I have learn that by criticizing the students work with a real positive comment, but maybe not a compliment, can help them improve immensely. A compliment in the right moment is very helpful, however, not necessarily have to be connected to the students playing, but it can be about the shirt they are wearing or their nice attitude. Students come to lesson to learn, and I hope they are expecting a teacher who wants to teach them and to care about them. I believe students understand and are appreciative of their teacher  being tough. 

I also believe that my job is not just to teach new concepts, strokes, ideas, etc, but to teach the student the art of practicing. I take time in the lesson to practice with them. I like to be sure they understand and know how to embrace the assignments I gave them when practicing by themselves. I also find important to write detailed assignments.  

I believe that rhythm and musicality is related to movement and singing. Although all students can’t sing well and are shy when they are asked to move, I encourage them to try it, even if I have to look like a clown while doing a certain movement with them. Music is movement!

Finally, I believe that technique is the key for students to feel confident about their playing. When a student feels they are acquiring skills, they are most likely to realize they like to play. Weather playing violin is their idea or their parents, the sensation that they can do it and they are improving is what will keep them moving forward. 

TESTIMONIALS

"I decided at age 60 to take violin lessons and was fortunate to find Yalira as a instructor. I found Yalira to be focused, dedicated to my growth, patient and to have enough of a sense of humor that made lessons enjoyable. I have always thought some people were meant to teach while others were meant to do. Yalira is once of those rare people that excel at both. I am 15 months into the experience and enjoying every minute. I highly recommend Yalira as a instructor". 

Don D. - Violin Student in Dallas, TX

"My 10 year old enjoys having Yalira as a teacher. She is definitely an inspiration women and very knowledgeable. We are looking forward to having her working with us!!"

Lesly R. - Parent in Washington, D.C.

Phenomenal Teacher! She taught my daughter viola for 1 year. Very talented and extremely patient! Highly recommend her!

Syma G. - Parent in Dallas, TX

© 2023 Yalira Machado Montejo all rights reserved

© Photos by Joan Kwuon