Congratulations to Lisa Meyer, ACEMM’s Fall 2019 Spotlight Award recipient! A master teacher who seeks to create unity and build community through music, serving both her students and the teachers of her district.  

Serving in Two Roles

Lisa Meyer is an elementary general music teacher and music resource director for Dearborn Public schools. For the last 32 years, she has been in the music classroom creating a safe place for students to enjoy learning, creating and performing. In her current school, Duvall Elementary, Lisa teaches Kindergarten-4th grade and includes hand chimes and ukulele in her curriculum. She also runs an extracurricular choir Vivace Singers. Students in Dearborn have music twice a week for 45 minutes. 

Teaching in the 3rd largest district in Michigan with 34 schools and 27,000 students, Lisa has worked for the last 24 years as the Music Resource Director. In this role, she is in charge of the music department for both vocal and instrumental music K-12. The list of responsibilities is staggering –  from interviewing, leading professional development, and mentoring, to overseeing budgets, membership fees, and expenses associated with transportation and substitutes. However, what her colleagues have commented on most is that she is an amazing advocate for them and the students. Her colleague, Sharon Baloga says, “She cares about children and desires to provide the best musical experience for each child in our district.” In order to provide these musical experiences, Lisa has worked very hard to create continuity between the schools in her district. Again, Sharon Baloga shares, “Each elementary building had different materials, texts, instruments, and technology. Being a general music teacher in multiple buildings was a nightmare, having to create different plans for each building due to the lack of continuity in resources. When Lisa became our Music Resource teacher she worked diligently to give our department a sense of unity. When traveling to each building now, you will find the exact same materials in each building – texts, instruments, and technology.”

Impact on Community

At DuVall Elementary, Lisa sees her influence in providing a community founded on “enthusiasm and unity” -one where songs and activities are being shared not only in the classroom but on the playground and at home, where students can be found teaching classmates, siblings and parents.

Another facet of the Music Resource position is to create partnerships with community arts groups to benefit the students. Lisa has created relationships with the Dearborn Symphony Orchestra ensuring that all 4th-grade students are able to attend a concert. A few students each year get the chance to play recorder during “Ode to Joy” with the orchestra. Additionally, members of The Detroit Orchestra come to Dearborn to do in-school performances and concerts around music and literature.

For the community of teachers in Dearborn Public Schools, Lisa’s biggest impact has been to provide meaningful opportunities for Professional Development. She focuses on opportunities during the school year as well as more long-range goals for future development. She encourages and assists teachers in pursuing Orff  Schulwerk Levels training, World Music Drumming and Literacy and Music.

Elemental Approach

In her own words, Lisa finds that “movement is essential to music education. Students need to experience musical skills and concepts through singing, instrument playing composition, and especially movement. [The elemental approach allows] students to express themselves artistically.” Additionally, she wants to make sure that all of the staff in the Dearborn schools have the training to teach movement and understand the importance of students having artistic experiences. 

What others are saying

“Lisa is an amazing music educator who has impacted countless students, student teachers, and the music educators that have worked with her. She is a master teacher who uses strategies that are effective and research-based. She is a wonderful colleague who leads a large department while working well with administrators.” Heather Webber, colleague

“Our community has reaped the benefits of Lisa’s hard work and is very supportive of the results Lisa has achieved in the Dearborn Public Schools Music Department.  We are very fortunate to have Lisa in Dearborn and appreciate everything she does to create a successful music department.” Sharon Baloga, Colleague

More about the Recipient

Lisa has completed levels I, II, and III of Orff Schwulerk Certification, is a member of the Galileo Leadership Cohort and has done Total Learning training.  She  graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Music Education from Eastern Michigan University, completed her Master of Education degree with an Elementary endorsement from Wayne State University, and through Oakland University became an Education Specialist in School Administration with an emphasis on building teaching leadership. She is a member of the Detroit Orff Schulwerk Association and Michigan Music Educators Association. Lisa also works with Wayne State University’s music education students in her classrooms so they can “observe and see how to incorporate all the facets that make for a well-rounded music classroom.”

ACEMM is not the first organization to recognize Lisa’s positive impact on students and teachers. She has been awarded the Mayor’s Arts Educator Award from the Mayor of Dearborn and the Dearborn Community Arts Council. She has also received the Administrator of the year award from the Michigan Music Educators Association. While under Lisa’s leadership, Dearborn Public Schools has been recognized as one of the top communities for music education in the United States for multiple years.

Congratulations again to Lisa Meyer, ACEMM Fall 2019 Spotlight Award Recipient.

3 thoughts on “Fall 2019 Spotlight Award – Lisa Meyer

  1. Lisa is an amazing person as well as educator. I have known her even when she was a young lady. Not only does she excel in the education field, she and her husband John have raised two beautiful, intelligent daughters. Congratulations Lisa, you are so deserving of this great recognition. May God continue to bless you richly,

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