On a personal note, one of the ensembles made the debut performance of my newest orchestra composition. One other music teacher also had a new piece premiered. While I don’t mean to pat myself on the back, I was reminded of the impression these compositions might make on the students. Among those student musicians are likely to be some future aspiring composers. I remember when I was in school I was always impressed with my teachers who also performed regularly around the community. It meant something to me that one of my teachers recorded an album or performed with well-known artists.
A pastor at my church once offered an axiom to parents: “More is caught than taught.” Children learn more from what they observe than from what they hear. This is true on a number of levels. A student will really learn what staccato means by hearing it demonstrated rather than just by reading a definition. Students will believe they can become excellent performers when they see their peers do so.
My point is that hopefully a few students will carry a memory with them that their teachers are also composers, and that composition might be something they might want to try for themselves. Let me offer a little encouragement to music teachers to teach by example, demonstrating that in addition to being a teacher, you are also a performer, a composer, a recording engineer, whatever.