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Malia Pereyra in a music classroom

George Mason University’s Potomac Arts Academy sponsors a program that let music education major Malia Pereyra serve as a Teaching Scholar for area students.

A Passion to Share Knowledge

While completing classes for her BA in music education, George Mason University student Malia Pereyra also got the chance to gain teaching experience in an elementary school.

Pereyra served as a Teaching Scholar for school-age music students through a program sponsored by the Mason Community Arts Academy, an outreach program that brings George Mason’s quality arts instruction to the public through an assortment of special events, classes, and community service ventures.

The Teaching Scholars program at Potomac Arts Academy sends instruments and student teachers into schools to conduct weekly enrichment classes for children who are unable to afford private music lessons.

Pereyra taught an hour-long, afterschool program at Woodburn Elementary in Falls Church, Virginia. Each week, she wrote a lesson plan, arranged songs, and created exercises for her students, then had them play and perform the arrangements in the following class. It’s a job she’s loved from the start.

“Each week has been great!” Pereyra says. “The kids are incredibly smart, love to play their instruments, and have a true passion for music. The time goes by so quickly it has become difficult to only have an hour for this class.”

Not only are her students benefiting from the program, but Pereyra herself is honing the valuable classroom skills she’ll need for her career. Time management, she says, is one of the most important things she’s learned, followed by patience and the ability to think on her feet.