Meet our dynamic and passionate music teacher, Lauren Schwartz, who shares her love of music with 6th, 7th, and 8th graders at Visitacion Valley Middle School in San Francisco.
Lauren’s journey to becoming a music teacher is what she describes as “accidental.” Prior to teaching, she was a music therapist who developed a music therapy practice at the same school she now teaches at. When the school’s music teacher left unexpectedly, Lauren was offered the job, even though she had never taken a music education class before. Her intuition told her to take a chance, and she dove into learning all she could about music education.
As a music teacher, Lauren delved into the Modern Band curriculum, taking the existing program at the school to new heights. She introduced her students to various instruments and even taught herself guitar and bass. In her classroom, Lauren delights in those magical moments when her students “get it” and become so engrossed in the music that they forget they’re in school.
One thing that makes Lauren stand out is her background in music therapy. She emphasizes that music is about self-expression, not perfection, and encourages her students to try new things. Lauren sees her students as whole individuals, helping them find their passions and supporting them as they pursue them. She has connected with many exceptional educators through the Music Will community – namely, Scott Burstein whom she credits with pushing her to new limits she didn’t think was possible as an educator – and with their guidance, she has helped her students achieve things she never thought possible.
Lauren is driven by her belief that music has the power to save lives. She finds inspiration in every music teacher she’s ever had, from elementary to high school, who nurtured her love of music in creative ways. In her free time, Lauren enjoys spending time with loved ones, playing pickleball, working out at Orange Theory, and being in nature.
We are fortunate to have dedicated teachers like Lauren who change the lives of their students. Thank you for all that you do, Lauren!