Texas State University

This year we had a differently-abled student in our Grade 3-5 Beginning class, which originally presented significant issues with classroom management and structuring the class for the best experience possible for all involved. We struggled with whether or not to keep this student in the class, but it became clear that the ensemble element was what engaged her and we committed to making it work. Our master teachers worked with our lead and assistant teachers in the class to come up with a weekly plan for getting this young lady through the class material, and although her physical challenges didn’t enable her to put bow on string she WAS able to perform by playing pizzicato with her class in both semester-end concerts. Her parents were so grateful for how hard our teachers worked to give their daughter this experience, telling us with tear-filled eyes how much it meant to them for their child to be seen and treated as a part of the class. Our teachers learned so much in the process, too – they now feel prepared to handle a much broader variety of situations in the classroom!