During my time at Eaton Elementary School, my peer Zeb Mims and I were challenged with the task of finding out whether group or center style learning or whole group learning worked better in the music education setting. At first both Zeb and I, and out partner professor Dr. Johnson felt that the center style was going to work best. During our time we got the great opportunity to not only observe one of the finest general music teachers in the New Hanover school system Ms. Carly Kanzler, but we also got an opportunity to teach, and work with the students. Even though the results proved our initial hypothesis wrong, it was still one of my best and most enjoyable experiences here at UNCW.
Dr. Johnson approached Zeb and me about this project because not only was he interested in determinant the results of this experiment, but he also knew that Zeb and I are interested in pursuing a career in elementary general music
I was able to gain a better understanding of the day-to-day teaching that goes on in the elementary school setting, as well as gain a better understanding of the types of curriculum and information that will be age appropriate for each grade in an elementary school setting. Seeing as being a general music teacher is my desired career, this experience provided me with an invaluable look into the job. It was challenging at first to go in front of the class and be confident and just start teaching, but as I did it, it started to come more and more natural. I would say that I learned more then any general music class can teach, simply because it was hands on.
I feel simply having this experience will allow me to get more out of my student teaching semester. Because I have already worked out a lot of the nerves of being in front of a class, and worked with lesson planning, and other parts of teaching on a day-by-day basis, the student teaching semester will come easier to me. With the being said, I feel that getting more out of my student teaching semester will not only make my relationship with my partner teacher better, it will help make me a more viable candidate for a general music job. It will also be an experience I can reference in an interview, making me stand out from my competitors.