Choir Teacher Proves She Does More Than Sing


Ms. Amy Westcott makes note of a student's vocal range while auditioning her for Advanced Chamber Choir.

Maddie Bero, Student of Journalism

Ms. Amy Westcott knows that teaching choir is not as simple as it looks.

Instead of being a regular teacher, she has to be more of a coach. She has to motivate her students, to build their confidence. Besides motivating her students, Westcott has many other duties.

Outside of teaching, she is one of the few people qualified at NHS to lead extracurriculars like Vintage and Madrigal Singers. Both of those activities require fees, so she has to be a bookkeeper as well. Even regular choir classes require her to handle money from fundraisers, and fees for Solo & Ensemble.

Along with fees, Ms.Westcott has to handle costuming as well. Both of her extracurriculars have specific costuming, and choir students are required to wear specific clothes from the school for performing. She has to make sure all her students are fitted for their costuming for concerts.

Concerts are the main difference for Westcott and core subject teachers. Instead of always hitting the skills that are taught, most of the time goes into learning music. It is hard to teach to a lesson while trying to prepare for concerts and other performances.

Preparing for those concerts does not mean teaching the students the music, it includes finding the music, listening to the music and ordering the music. She loves her job — her dream since high school.

Westcott has been involved in music her entire life, but now outside of teaching, she doesn’t have a voice to use very often. That comes with the territory, having to be an example of how to sing, to speak over a crowd of 50 kids, and many other things contribute to putting her voice in a bad shape. Although she misses her range, she is unwilling to trade her job for anything.

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