Tiny Treble Makers

Our Teachers

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Valerie Kocel, MT-BC
Director & Registered Teacher

B.M. in Music Therapy at West Texas A&M University
A.A. in Music Education at Amarillo College
NICU-MT at Florida State University
Board Certification through CBMT #06621
Valerie has spent most of her life singing, and playing the piano, but in 2002 she completed her degree as a music therapist and has worked with babies, children & adults in many different facilities & schools. Valerie has been called the pied piper because children tend to flock to her side when she is around. Teaching Music Together comes naturally to Valerie and she has a passion for sharing her love of music with this pint-sized generation. Valerie lives in Waco with a supportive husband who has to listen to a boatload of kids music all day, a little girl who loves singing and dancing to her Music Together music and 2 crazy dogs who run away when bubble wrap & packing tape comes around!

About Valerie
Favorite activities: Anything outdoors! Hiking, biking or camping
Favorite food: Ben & Jerry’s Tonight Dough ice cream
Favorite music: jazz & big band music
Unique fact about Valerie: I have lived and worked as a music therapist in 4 different states: Ohio, Florida, Colorado & Texas
Why did you become a Music Together teacher? As a music therapist, I had heard about Music Together many times at our national conferences. After I had my own child a few years ago, I tried a free class and loved it. I left the class saying to myself, “why in the world am I not doing this???” The skills & professionalism of the teacher impressed me as well as the structure of the class itself. I knew from that one class that Music Together was a very high quality children’s class. These teachers had impressive skills and truly enjoyed teaching. I completed the training in 2013 & I still love Music Together and my families as much as I thought I would plus a little more!
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Lisa Townsend, MT-BC
Registered Teacher

B.M. in Music Therapy, Queens University of Charlotte
Neurologic Music Therapy Certification, Colorado State University
Orff-Schulwerk Level I training, Eastman School of Music
Board Certification through CBMT
Working with children and making music come naturally to Lisa — she believes that everyone is especially musical! A belief in the importance of music as a tool for learning and development (at any age!) as well as the power of music to connect us to one another are just a few of the reasons why Lisa chose music therapy as a profession. When not teaching Music Together classes, Lisa is a member of the Integrative Healing team at St. Anthony Hospital, working with adults in the medical setting. She also works with children with disabilities in an alternative school setting: doing music therapy in classrooms, one-on-one, and developing their first children’s choir.

About Lisa
Favorite activities: Reading, cooking, singing in a choir, and all forms of exploring & experiencing nature. Favorite food: Chicken French — a special recipe from my hometown in upstate NY.
Favorite music: This is such a difficult question for a music lover… I am especially drawn to songs with soul!
Unique fact about Lisa: Lisa is a lover of languages! She learned Spanish in high school, studied Italian in Siena, Italy in college, learned German last year in Freiburg, Germany and loves using American Sign Language with children in her music classes.
Why did you become a Music Together teacher? I was introduced to Music Together by the director of a studio here in Colorado. Her enthusiasm for teaching, as well as the benefits she observed in attending Music Together classes with her son with special needs, was contagious. Additionally, I was drawn to the thoughtfulness of their research-based/experiential-learning model and knew it would complement my work as a music therapist. I look forward to connecting with your family through music!
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Abi Carlton, MT-BC
Registered Teacher

B.M. in Music Therapy at Colorado State University
B.A. in Psychology at University of Colorado
Board Certification through CBMT #12155
Abi completed her Music Together teacher training in 2010, and is thrilled to be returning to teaching to indulge her silly quotient! Singing is Abi’s favorite activity, and she majored in Voice while completing her degree in music therapy at CSU in Fort Collins. Abi currently works as a music therapist with children with special needs and life-limiting illness. When Abi isn’t singing, she can be found exploring Colorado with her friends and family, or snuggling with her cat, Josephine. Abi will begin work on her Master of Music Therapy degree through Augsburg University in Fall 2017.

About Abi
Favorite activities: Hiking, exploring mountain towns, and hunting for the perfect donut!
Favorite food: Mac and cheese, anything with bacon
Favorite music: I love acoustic, folk-influenced music… and musical theatre!
Unique fact about Abi: I was born and raised in Kent, England, and moved to Boulder when I was in high school.
Why did you become a Music Together teacher? When I decided to pursue a career in music therapy, I was looking for part-time jobs that would give me some music experience and be fun to balance with school. I met a Music Together teacher at a wedding I attended, who encouraged me to observe a class and see what Music Together was about. Within about 10 minutes of observation, I knew the program was something special and decided to complete the teacher training. Following my teaching internship, I’ve taught classes in Denver, Westminster, Boulder and Fort Collins, and loved connecting with kiddos and their families through music!