Lamar’s orchestra class is located in Room 108, and is run by orchestra directors Andrew Walton and Jessica Winters.
Winters is new to Lamar, but she has been teaching orchestra for three years. She took over for orchestra’s previous assistant director James Hogan who left last summer. Before teaching at Lamar, Winters worked at elementary schools as an orchestra teacher.
The transition from teaching elementary music and elementary-aged students to high school was an interesting switch,” Winters said.
At times there can be students who are having bad days and are not super focused. This can disrupt the learning output in class. But so far, Winters said no student has ever come across as ungrateful.
“I try not to take it personally, and I understand because I myself have those kind of bad days, but I do believe I am appreciated,” Winters said.
Students agree that there are good days and off days in orchestra class.
“There are some students who goof around from time to time, but for the most part, we all just play our music and enjoy our time in that class,” Philharmonic violin player Leslie Garcia said.
Nevertheless, Winters wouldn’t leave Lamar or quit orchestra for the world because she loves the school and loves teaching orchestra.
“I like it here, I like teaching orchestra,” Winters said. “It’s a fun occupation. I enjoy working with students, getting to listen, and teaching music every day.”
The students have decided they like Winters as well.
“She’s definitely a really cool teacher, and I hope she stays at Lamar because I really enjoy her teaching methods,” Garcia said.