Name: Jessica Cole
Grade/subject/school: Music teacher Maple Glen Elementary
Years teaching: 26
Background/Schooling (college & high school):
Brownsburg High School, Brownsburg, Ind.; B.S. Kindergarten-Primary Education, Indiana University, Bloomington; B.S. Music Education, Elementary/Intermediate, Middle School/Junior High, Indiana University, Bloomington; M.A. Curriculum Design and Instruction, Olivet Nazarene University, Bourbonnais, Ill.
Why did you become a teacher?
“I started my music education degree because of my love for music. My elementary music teacher, Mr. Reader, was always fun and gave each of us opportunities to express our individual talents and abilities. When in college, I explored elementary education classes and fell in love with that area of teaching as well, and switched from music education to elementary education. I was formerly a first grade teacher at Westfield for 16 years and then became the music teacher at Maple Glen when the building opened. I enjoy seeing the enthusiasm of the children when they experience something new and challenging and their joy when they achieve success at the completion of the task or event.”
What goals do you have for your students?
“My main goal is that my students develop an appreciation for music. Next is that they enjoy listening to and making music in one way or another. Not all of my students are going to go on to play an instrument or sing in a choir, but all of them will listen to the radio and attend concerts. I want my students to have an appreciation for what the artists have had to learn and endure in their lifetimes to be able to perform.
“I don’t know that I have a favorite movie, but I do like ones that make my mind really think about what if the story could take place. I like the fantastic story lines, those that probably would never happen, but if they could, the event would be an amazing one to tell about!”
Favorite musician or band?
“I enjoy all types of music, but the artist I’ve paid money to go see is the band Earth, Wind, and Fire. Their music is so upbeat and fun, and it just makes me want to move and enjoy the time I’m with them. I love going to live performances of any kind, whether it’s an orchestra, ballet, high school band or simply a small combo on the street corner that happens to be playing as I walk by.”
What’s something your students might not know about you?
“I don’t think my students know that deep down I am really quite shy, and don’t like to be in the spotlight at all. And, one of my very favorite things to do is to sit on the beach all day and play with the hermit crabs. I even have four hermit crabs at home in a tank next to my bed that I give fresh water to every night and feed just before I go to sleep.”