Apr 21, 2017
Benita Eldridge was born and raised in Elmira, NY, and she has been
teaching music there for 34 years. What’s the secret to her
longevity? A supportive administration, commitment to her job and
community, a firm hand guiding her class, and an overarching love
for her students. Listen: Highlight to
Tweet: "I don’t care if you don’t sing well. I do care if
you work." - Benita Eldridge Show Notes:
3 Key Takeaways:
- Born, raised, 34 years teaching in the same town: Elmira,
- Teaches 7th grade at Broadway Academy, where 34% of the
students are in chorus, and 64% in a performance class (chorus,
orchestra, or band)
- You need tough love in a town with 2 prisons and a psyche
center. Procedure is king in her classroom.
- Hold them to high standards, but support them, and fight for
them when needed. Maintain “a safe, loving, caring, but firm
- Relationships with students matter. They come back years
- What are the keys to being a tough love teacher who has a
lasting impact? Be committed in you job, to your community, to your
students; overarching theme is love...you don’t have to like your
students, but you have to love people. Support from administrators.
Know your crap. Take risks. Listen to podcasts. Be willing to
learn. Have your kids buy into that.
- Use humor. Be willing to be the one who is silly or vulnerable,
but then be serious about the work, and get it done.
- Benita uses Sight Reading Factory!
- Be committed in your job, to your community, and to your
- Love your students. You don’t always have to like them, but
there must be an overarching theme of love in your classroom.
- Take risks and keep learning!
34 Year Veteran Choral & General Music
Teacher Music History & Elementary Music Elmira City School
District/hometown All County Guest Conductor Sponsored
by: Sight Reading
Factory (Use promo code “NINJA” at checkout
for 10 free student accounts!) My Music
Folders (Use promo code “NINJA” at checkout
for THE BEST price)