What does a Choir Teacher do?

A choir teacher is a music educator who focuses on teaching students how to use their voices in a group setting. This entails learning about music and reading music, as well as developing skills for managing one’s own sound and interacting with other choir members. Despite the fact that children sing in groups as early as kindergarten, they are unlikely to be in a choir class, and thus have a choir teacher, until they are in upper elementary school, if not middle school.

Choir teachers in public schools, like all other teachers, must be certified the state in which they work. They must usually complete a course of study in education and music at the undergraduate or graduate level, as well as pass at least one examination, in order to qualify for certification. Choir teachers frequently have additional musical abilities, such as being singers or playing an instrument.

Choir is a mandatory class in some schools, while it is an elective in others. This means that depending on the set-up, the choir teacher may be teaching different types of students. In the first case, many of the students are unlikely to have any prior training or interest in the subject. In the second scenario, students may have both a natural talent for singing and a desire to improve their ability to do so. Chorus may be offered as a level one class in schools with a large student population, leading to an upper level choir class. The choir teacher may teach a large number of classes in a single day and may only see each group of students three times per week.

The choir teacher assists students in warming up their voices, learning singing techniques, and learning specific pieces of repertoire that he or she has chosen as appropriate for the available voices within the choir class. Students learn to listen to one another while singing, and older students learn to sing in parts that are appropriate for their vocal ranges, as determined the choir teacher. Once or twice a semester, the choir class usually performs in a public concert.

A music position is not always available as a full-time position in a single school. A choir teacher in this situation may work at multiple schools within a district or across multiple districts. In addition to choir classes, the choir teacher may offer private voice lessons either during the school day or after school as an elective. Another role that the choir teacher may have is coaching students who have a lead role in a school musical and rehearsing the chorus singers.