Juan Carlos Tavarez is in his seventh year as a music educator. He currently teaches elemental music at California Ave School and Northern Parkway School in the Uniondale School District in Uniondale, NY. He works closely with at-risk males and serves as mentor to his students as the supervisor of the Male Rites of Passage Club and Young Gentlemen’s Club, leads the Boy’s Chamber Choir, and is the director of the All-District Elementary Chorus. Prior to joining the Uniondale faculty, Mr. Tavarez taught for the NYC Public Schools, where he served as founding music teacher and school culture coordinator. He received his BM in Music Education from Five Towns College and his MM in Music Education from New York University with a certification in Kodály. Tavarez is pursuing his Doctoral Studies at Long Island University. His goal is to research, hands on, how music and music education develop the student as a person. How can music guide us to better understand human action and experience? He completed Orff-Schulwerk training at George Mason University in 2018. His approach demonstrates respect and dignity for the unique needs of children through play, exploration, and kindness. His charge as a music educator is to bring all of his students into a life-long love of music, while solidifying that appreciation with practical skills and true musicianship in his teaching and learning.