Begin Band or Orchestra in 4th Grade at Grove!
Grove Elementary is very excited to offer first-year band or orchestra instruction to 4th graders! Students may elect to start as “first years” in 4th or 5th grade.* Starting in 4th grade gives students the opportunity — unique in the Stillwater area — of gaining an extra year of instrument learning and practice at Grove. In addition, teacher-student contact will be weekly, providing a more robust level of music instruction.
This expanded program will be led by Erika Hammerschmidt, a dynamic leader with a diverse and accomplished music background. A graduate from the University of MN, Duluth, with a double degree in Music Education – Band and Horn Performance, and completed coursework toward a Master’s of Music Education from the University of MN, Twin Cities, Erika has extensive experience in classroom music, developing band programs, private instruction, music performance, and string instrument instruction. Erika is thrilled to come on board as the Band and Orchestra Teacher at Grove Elementary. Her full biography is below.
*Students may also begin as a first-year in 6th grade with additional private instruction.
Email Grove Elementary for more information: firstname.lastname@example.org
Erika Hammerschmidt has a very diverse and exciting music background. She graduated from the University of MN, Duluth, with a double degree in Music Education – Band and Horn Performance. In 1993 she taught classroom music/beginning band at The Marshall School as they piloted a 5-8 middle school program. In 1995 she helped the College of St. Scholastica, Duluth, MN, develop their Concert Band program. After completing coursework for her Master’s Degree she taught High School Band at the Orono High School.
Chapter two of her life consisted of marrying her trombonist husband, Steve, celebrating the birth of sons Nicholas (15) and Stefan (13), and homeschooling for 10 years. She taught writing in a homeschool co-op for 3 years using the Institute for Excellence Writing program. During those years she maintained a private music studio, taught in the summer band programs with the Orono, Mahtomedi, and North St. Paul schools and won the Second Horn position with the Duluth Superior Symphony Orchestra.
Last year (Chapter 3) marked her return to classroom teaching at the St. Croix Catholic School in Stillwater, MN, where she started the Chamber Ensemble, an audition-based performing group and where she began teaching the Advanced String Orchestra in addition to teaching private lessons to string students grades 2 to 7. She enjoys spending time with her family, going on walks, biking, playing tennis and basketball, and spending as much time outdoors in her favorite city: Duluth. Erika was an exchange student in Germany her senior year in high school and is still quite fluent in German. Erika is thrilled to come on board as the Band and Orchestra Teacher at Grove Elementary.