“Music is everywhere. Just listen.”

Susan Wilson, music teacher at Carver Elementary, reminds her students daily that their worlds are filled with music.

“I grew up with a mom who taught me to love music, and I want to share my love of music with my students,” she said.

Walking into Wilson’s classroom is like walking into an eclectic music store. The walls are covered with guitars and stringed instruments of all shapes and sizes, tambourines, drums, a violin, rain sticks, an accordion, a washboard, a bugle, and much more.

The most favorite spot in her room by far is the elevated, brightly decorated stage in the back corner with a microphone prominently affixed front-and-center.

“My students love to sing and to get a chance to be the center of attention, so the stage is the perfect place to let them express themselves,” she explained.

Each morning, Wilson greets students as they arrive on campus with her guitalele – a combination between a guitar and a ukulele. She sings songs to welcome them to another fun day at Carver Elementary.

She is the 2019-2020 Beauregard Parish Elementary Teacher of the Year and the G.W. Carver Elementary Teacher of the Year.

Wilson is a seventeen year veteran teacher with a Louisiana certification in Music for early childhood through twelfth grade. She also holds a Texas teaching certificate in vocal music.

She taught guitar, piano, and choir at Edna High School in Texas for ten years before moving to Beauregard Parish in 2012. She has taught at Merryville High School, Pine Wood Elementary, and DeRidder Junior High School.

 She has been the music teacher at Carver Elementary for the past six years. She is the school program coordinator and also directs the third grade choir.

She earned her Bachelor of Arts in Social Science – Education Concentration with Designation from Ashford University in Clinton, IA, and attended East Texas Baptist College in Marshall, TX, as a Vocal Major and Education Minor.

She has owned and operated a music studio as a private music instructor of piano, guitar, and voice. She is the Music Director at Pleasant Hill Baptist Church in DeRidder and serves as a music artist for community and church events.

One of her favorite things about teaching is when a student is able to make a direct connection with music by playing an instrument. She especially enjoys helping students who may be shy or even non-verbal strum an instrument and smile with joy as they are able to find a voice through the instrument.

“Every child can be reached through music,” she insists.

Wilson believes that engagement with music and the arts develops our creative side, leading to innovations which can change our world.

“My goal is that each student develops an appreciation, a love, and a desire for music that will last a lifetime,” she concluded.

In her classroom, every child experiences the joy of music.