A Day in the Life of a Music Educator

No one Knows What You Meant to Play

Music educator Michael Nestor has been passionate about music since his childhood–even before he formally learned how to read music. Even though he briefly switched majors in college from Music Education to Computer Science, it didn’t take him long to switch back. He knew teaching would be hard work, and he also knew teaching school kids would throw lots of random variables into the mix. But neither the hard work nor the randomness scared him off. In fact, sharing his passion and experiences with students is what he loves to do. 

Though the saxophone is Michael’s primary instrument (thanks to his dad, who was a big jazz fan!) he also strives to learn to play others. He equates this to running into a brick wall, and says if you keep running into that wall it will eventually come down, and you can keep right on running. When teaching jazz to middle school students, he reminds them that when they’re doing improv, no one in the audience knows what you “meant” to play. He says the same is true in life. People don’t know our insecurities unless we share them. Great advice!

Nestor shares he doesn’t get in nearly as much practice as he’d like these days–but for two good reasons. His kids, ages 2 and 6, keep him pretty busy. They’ve even convinced him to give Kidz Bop a chance! Moving around as a military kid gave him the ability to accept himself, without needing the approval of his peers, but you’ll have to tune in to this week’s episode of A Day in the Life to hear how he almost showed up for the first day of 6th grade wearing his pants backwards! We hope you’ll join us.

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