Ben Kono CV Teaching Artist 70.5 KB

Teaching Philosophy

I have a passion for teaching music. Teaching excites me! I know I’ve done well when I come away from a class feeling I’ve learned more than my students. You may have heard the phrase “Head, Hands and Heart” or “Mind, Body and Spirit” used in reference to learning. I believe music, perhaps more than any other field of learning, requires a keen sense of balance within that trifecta. As a teacher of music, it is my job to ensure that a student has the musicianship and technical skills necessary to successfully perform, and in so doing push their passion in a focused direction, whether that path be as a professional or a as a lifelong fan of music. There is  a cynical belief in this country that the arts should be the last of the subjects to receive the attention that our core curriculum enjoys in our educational system. And yet, I can’t count the number of times after a performance when I’ve been approached by an audience member who was sincerely moved by their participation in the event; or by an adult who wishes they had taken up an instrument in school. If math and reading are the “Head” and sports the “Hands”, surely we can’t ignore the “Heart”!  Over the last thirty-odd years of my performing career, I’ve found it more and more gratifying to pass on the lessons I’ve learned both on the street and in the academe to other passionate students young and old. I have former students performing and teaching all over the world at all levels of institution, but it is perhaps the amateur who still engenders a passion for playing music many years later that shows me what a profound impact music education can have in someone’s life.