Chicago Private School - Ellis

Michael Ellis

Middle & Upper School Music and Band

Director of Student Leadership

B.A., St. Xavier University

mellis@morganparkacademy.org

Q&A

What is the most important lesson you want students to learn in your class?

I have always felt the most important lesson a student can learn in the classroom is how to teach themselves. You never stop learning, and five minutes a day over the course of a lifetime can add up to a lot of time.

How do you keep current with the subject areas you cover?

I play music professionally and I continue to take professional development classes, both on and off campus. Recently, for instance, I participated in a master’s piano class with blues legend Marty Sammon.

How do you help students learn to learn?

Teach them to find their voice, and then how to listen to that voice with acceptance. The moment that something “clicks” for a student is always a fantastic moment.