August 26, 2008

Reading #1 Joshua Bell, My Maestro

Filed under: basic writing,learning,teaching — gdevi @ 2:28 am

Please post your comments by August 29, 2008.



  1. 1. Joshua Bell, main character, an also the narrator of the essay was influenced by music at a young age by his teacher Josef Gingold. Joshua an Josef almost did not meet, for a bomerang accident at Joshua’s familys barn, but the accident did not stop Joshua from playing at his recital. He just played wounded. After the recital Joshua enrolled into a music program that Josef taught in the summer. Josef did not teach everything to Jousha he wanted him to learn some things on his own, for he thought that teachers who beat the information into the students would push them away from their goals an dreams. The essay went into Josef childhood an how he played at his school assembly an everyone loved his music. They said it was beautiful. But there was one teacher that thought he should not feel good about himself an hit him in the hand an damaged a nerve. Ever since then Josef did not force or take away from anyones abilies or dreams. When Joshua was 21 years old he moved to New York. He did not see much of Josef, but he knew his health was failing. Josef has a stroke an died two weeks later. Joshua stated “Someday I want to teach too. Gingold’s ghost – the autographed photo on my wall hung next to Paganini – wll be watching(83).” Joshua wanted to be just like Josef an teach lessons to others.

    2. “Early success can be dangerous for a musician. You hear of prodigies who rise fast and flame out. Sometimes that’s because teachers spoon-feed these young people every musical idea. At some point they feel they don’t need teaching anymore, so they stop learning(83).” I agree on this quote if a teacher spoon-feeds every little piece of information to you then you will never teach yourself or learn from it. You will always think that there is going to be someone out there to do the work for you. The one thing i liked about the writing was that Josef did not listen to the teacher that disliked him an told him to not feel so good about himself. It showed that he knew he was better then her an just blew her off. That is also the thing i did not like about the writing, why would someone want to put someone down for their own talent. She was jealous of him. Their effect on the reader was to follow your dreams an not let someone bring you down or tell you that you can not make it or not good enough.
    Jamielyn: I like the quotation you picked — in general it is good advice whether in or out of classroom to let individuals figure out their own “voice.” That is part of good mentoring. Good work.

    Here are some things to watch out for when you write your next responses: Take time to proofread and correct spelling errors. There are many many here that almost impedes coherent reading. One way to do this would be to type your text in Word and then proof it there and do a copy/paste to the blog. Also check on run-on sentences–we’ll work on this in class as well. Third point, always refer to authors by their last name–So Bell and Gingold, not Joshua and Josef. Thanks. GD

    Comment by Jamielyn Clark — August 26, 2008 @ 5:04 pm | Reply

  2. At a young age, Joshua Bell grew an interest in music. Bell’s parents wanted to encourage their son and gave him his first violin at age four. The day before his first solo recital Bell was tossing a boomerang in his parent’s farm. Unfortunately, the boomerang whirled back and injured his chin, but this injury did not keep Bell from “playing the game”. Josef Gingold, Bell’s music teacher, helped Bell open his mind to music. “My teacher taught me that music could be more than a hobby”. Bell truly admired his teacher, and was willing to keep learning. Mr. Gingold did not teach him how to play the instrument but he helped Joshua build a relationship with music, for Joshua to be able to teach, and learn himself. Bell’s teacher made Joshua learn to appreciate his talent, and to push himself to become a better musician.

    “My teacher taught me that music could be more than a hobby” , I strongly agree with this statement. If you have the talent, and passion you may as well pursue it. For someone to start at such a young age and still be able to maintain their talent there is no reason to quit after all the dedication you put into it. I also believe that the teacher put a lot of faith into Joshua Bell because he saw a part of himself in Bell’s childhood. This reading shows that if you have a passion in anything that you do you should always keep you head up and keeping going for the gold.

    Deanna: Good observation – the essay is to a large extent about Gingold’s role in Bell’s evolution as a concert violinist. Keep practicing summary and response writing. GD

    Comment by Deanna Brennan — August 26, 2008 @ 9:03 pm | Reply

  3. At a very young age Joshua Bell began to love music. He began playing the violin at the age of four. Joshua’s teacher, Josef Gingold, was his role model. He looked up to this man very much. But this all might have never happened because the day before Joshua’s first solo recital he was playing with a boomerang. His parents weren’t happy about that. The boomerang came back and hit him in the chin. Two inches further and his music career would have been over. Joshua’s teacher taught him that music was more than just something you did. It was a way of life. “My teacher taught me that music could be more than a hobby”.

    I agree with the quote “My teacher taught me that music could be more than a hobby”. If you love doing something so much, than why not make it a part of your life. He began at a young age and was able to keep the same love for music through out the years. This essay shows that if you love doing something so much, than you should keep doing it. Not give up.

    Lauren: Good observation – the essay is to a large extent about Gingold’s role in Bell’s evolution as a concert violinist. Keep practicing summary and response writing. GD

    Comment by Lauren Forbes — August 27, 2008 @ 3:15 pm | Reply

  4. Joshua loved music well before he turned 4. He was given his first violin at four. He took music lessons by a guy by the name of Gingold. Joshua said, “I made my professional debut at 14, playing Mozart’s Third Biolin Concerto with the Philadelphia Orchestra.”

    I agree with the fact that it is a big thing to play with the Phiadelphia Orchestra and I also know that Mozart is really hard music to play. I did not think the writing was good nor bad. I am not much into music so it was not an interesting subject.I felt the language was very personal and Joshua was very thankful toward his teacher for what he had done for him.

    Jennifer: Please use the blog to practice your summary and response skills. It doesn’t matter at all whether we “love” or even “like” texts we read. That is a bonus if that happens. We read to learn how to write. Practicing how to summarize will help improve your ability to identify main points. Response writing will allow you to think critically about what you read. So from the next essay onwards, please practice summary and response writing, okay? Thanks. GD

    Comment by Jennifer Heldreth — August 28, 2008 @ 1:28 am | Reply

  5. Joshua Bell was born with an interest in music, music that came from a violin. Joshua’s parents encouraged him and help him follow his passion but there was one person who made Joshua the person he is today. Joshua reflects on his years growing up and learning from a great legend violinist. At the age of twelve Joshua spilts his chin open with a boomerang but that does not stop him from doing what he loves, playing his violin. Joshua plays at a recital where he meets Josef Gingold by chance and Josef becomes a teacher, a friend and a family member to Joshua. As Gingold and Joshua spend time together they learn more about violin and more about each other. Gingold teaches Joshua to be a kid but also take time for what he loves to do. Joshua grows up with Gingold by his side helping him and just being there for him. Gingold supported Joshua as he got older and started playing bigger recital and Gingold flew to some recitals where he sat in the front row looking very proud of Joshua. Bell takes alot out of this experiences with Gingold and remembers the ghost hanging on his wall, who taught him so much.

    Passion, this story makes me think of passion. The passion to do what you love no matter what it takes and to stick with it. I love how Joshua speaks of his relationship with Gingold and how Gingold helped him so much. It was very nice knowing that he had someone who believed in him so much and to help him succeed in what he loved to do. This story makes you think of how just one person can affect your life so much and how they stay with you even after there gone. I agree with Gingold and how he let Joshua be a kid and let him grow on his own but helped him grow in his music. This essay was very inspirational and tells you to follow your dreams and stick with what you love, and if someone is willing to help you let them. You don’t know the mark they could leave in your history.

    Kiley: Good. I am glad you enjoyed the essay. Keep practicing your summary and response skills. Thanks. GD

    Comment by Kiley Gibbons — August 28, 2008 @ 3:08 am | Reply

  6. Joshua Bell, the author and narrator of the story, had a passion for music and playing the violin. Josef Gingold, his teacher, came into Joshua’s life at the age of 12. He was not a normal everyday teacher with a degree in teaching music but he was a professional musician. He was understanding and not pushy. Joshua wrote in this story, “He laughed and laughed, and I left those lessons buzzing.” Josef made Joshua feel very comfortable and wanting to go to the lessons.. Josef went from his teacher to his friend to a higher figure that he admired, like a grandfather.

    “He laughed and laughed, and I left those lessons buzzing.” I agree with this quote completely because it s inspiring. I feel like it is people like him that make people so successful in life. I like this writing because I felt that I would connect with it. Almost everyone has someone that they look up and help them succeed in life. There wasn’t anything that I disliked about this writing. I felt that it was good because he wrote it from his perspective. It seems as if he broke up the writing so you could look into his eyes and see what he saw. It was very effective because I could visualize the picture as I read.

    Alicia: Good. I am glad you liked the essay. In the next response, work to make your response more directly towards the quote you selected. Why did Gingold’s fun approach to teaching music work so well with Bell, do you think? Comment on the ideas and thoughts in the essay, okay? Thanks. GD

    Comment by Alicia Brown — August 28, 2008 @ 5:58 pm | Reply

  7. Joshua Bell was a young violin musicain that was just like every other kid outside his music classes. Bell loved playing video and one day before his first solo recital he almost never got the chance to meet his future teacher because he was throwing a booerang around and ended up splitting his chin open. He played wounded which was the best thing he could do because his future teacher, Josef Gingold loved what he heard. Bell was luckey when Gingold made an exceptation to teach him because he never thought children. Bell became in love with how much Gingold loved his job and could laugh so easily. Gingold became more of a grandfather figure for Bell and help Bell become the best musician that he could. Bell was there the day before Gingold had a stroke and died two weeks later.

    I agree with the statement that “Gingold didn’t pull strings to further my career, but I pushed myself.” If you aren’t willing to do the work yourself then you must not have a great enough interst in pursuing the activity further without being pushed you must not care that much and should find a different activity but that wasn’t the case for young musician Joshua Bell he truely loved playing the violin. This short story was an easy read but i didn’t find it to appealing to me because I am not into the music aspect of life. This was a very personal story that could teach people to follow your dreams you because you never know where you will end up.

    Lisa: Good summary. Keep practicing responding to the ideas and thoughts. It doesn’t matter if we personally don’t like what we read. We read in order to learn how to write. Address the ideas and respond to them, okay? Thanks. GD

    Comment by Lisa Szymendera — August 28, 2008 @ 7:07 pm | Reply

  8. The essay, “My Maestro” Is a story about Joshua Bell and his music
    teacher Josef Gingold. The essay was also written by Joshua Bell. Joshua
    Bell was a child protégé of the violin, at his young age (he began
    playing at the age of four) he was considered extremely gifted. Joshua
    had many teachers before Josef Gingold, Josh’s parents chose Gingold
    because it was important to them that Josh have other interests outside
    the violin and Gingold felt the same way. Josef was not your usual music
    teacher. In most cases music teachers are very tough and want you to
    concentrate on music all the time and always practice. For most
    dedicated music teacher music is their life and they feel that their
    students should feel the same way. Music teacher are also perfectionist
    they usually scold children for doing things wrong. Josef was very
    different he taught the children as if they were his own. He saw how
    children loved music and wanted to help them be one with the music and
    not just do it because you where good at it. He also wanted them to
    have interested outside of music because he felt this would make them
    better musicians. He wanted them to love music as much as he did.
    Joshua loved his teacher he was not just a teacher or just a friend he
    was like family to Joshua like the grandfather Josh never had. Joshua
    now is in his early thirties and a renowned violinist. I believe in
    great part thanks to his teacher Josef Gingold and the love of music he
    instilled in him. When Joshua was young he would play for posters of
    dead Maestros and Musicians but now he plays for the poster of his
    beloved dead music teacher Josef Gingold as a tribute to him so that he
    will never forget what he taught him.

    To me this essay is a story that shows a great bound between teacher
    and student. It shows that not all teachers are there to just teach but
    to also have a relationship with their students. Joshua and Josef had
    and amazing student/teacher relationship one that turned into a
    friendship. I went to a performing arts high school and I know that
    music teachers are dedicated professionals who love their work. They
    can be tough and demanding but in the end they pass the love of music
    onto their students. Last year I studied Joshua Bell’s music I did not
    know much about him personally so it was interesting to read about
    Joshua as a person not just a musician.

    Good work, Kyle. I am glad you enjoyed the reading. I enjoyed reading your response. Practice proofreading, okay? Thanks. GD

    Comment by Kyle Driscole — August 28, 2008 @ 8:20 pm | Reply

  9. The story i was required to write about is called “My Maestro” by Joshua Bell. The story is based on a relationship that was formed between a young boy, Joshua Bell, and his mucis teacher, Josef Gingold. Josef was Joshua’s music teacher who eventually became more than a teacher to him. At an early age, Joshua was drawn to music. When he was four years old Joshua became interested in the violin instrument. His parents were a great influence on him playing the violin and that is how they chose Josef as his music teacher. Before Josef, Joshua had many music teachers before him, but since they had the same outlook on the backround of music, Josef was the best option to become Joshua’s teacher. He was very talented at playing this instrument which would be a very difficult item to play. Josef was a wonderful teacher and pushed Joshua to accomplish his best because music teachers are very often pushy and want their students to do the best they can at their goal. Josef was not only a teacher to Joshua, he soon became like family to him and referred to Josef like he was like a grandfather to him. Joshua looked up to Josef and because of Josef, today Joshua is a wonderful renowned violinest.

    In this story i feel very strongly about the relationship that the student and the teacher had. They became like family which every student needs because i believe it would help them achieve their goals more clearly and more efficient than in most cases. Josef did a wonderful job at teaching Joshua which turned out to be a great experience for Joshua. It takes a lot to be a musician and to put up with all the harsh comments students would recieve but in the end it is worth all the hard work and dedication.

    Good, Kassie. I am glad you enjoyed the essay. Yes, the changing nature of the master-student relationship is a big part of the essay and the point that Bell is making about teaching. Thanks. GD

    Comment by Kassie Faretta — August 28, 2008 @ 9:50 pm | Reply

  10. In the story “My Maestro”, the main character, Joshua Bell was influenced by music at a very young age. His parents gave him a violin at the age of 4, by the time he was twelve years old, he was committed to the violin. Joshua nearly missed his recital due to a boomerang, if he would have missed, he would have never met Gingold. Joshua joins Gingold`s class after meeting him at the recital, and becomes very successful with the violin. Gingold taught Joshua that “Music can be more than a hobby”. Gingold never pushed Joshua, and always treated him like family. They grew together, Gingold became the grandfather Joshua did not have.
    In relation to the quote above, Joshua Bell proves that music can be more than a hobby. He grew up like every other American boy, playing video games, and enjoying sports, but he also had a love for the violin. He pursued his dreams in playing the violin, he became very successful because he practiced, and had found an excellent teacher. I agree with the quote, music can always be more than a hobby, it is just wither you pursue it to the fullest. This story was a dedication to a great musician, Joshua`s story showed how caring Gingold was. Gingold never had to teach Joshua how to play, he did because he knew Joshua had a love for the violin, and had a lot of potential.

    Travis: Yes, a large part of the essay is Bell acknowledging how Bell showed him a profession rather than a hobby. Keep practicing your summary and response skills. Also start proofreading for spelling errors. Thanks. GD

    Comment by Travis Kolovich — August 28, 2008 @ 10:58 pm | Reply

  11. “My Maestro” was an essay written by Joshua Bell, about his life and his experiences with his maestro Josef Gingold. Josef Gingold taught Bell a lot of things not only about how to play the violin but life. He considered him not only his teacher and friend but as a grandfather as well. Gingold never pushed Bell and wanted to live life as a normal kid should. Bell talks about the ghosts that Gingold has on the walls of his house which is referring to all the people have influenced him with his music. Bell states “My teacher taught me that music could be more than a hobby. It could be a life”. This quote explains itself in whichever way you want to take it.
    The quote I stated above from the essay is a quote I found very true and relatable. You can relate it to anything not only with music but a sport as well. It depends how much passion and dedication you have toward a significant hobby. I completely agree with it, as much time as you want to put into it is determined whether it’s a hobby or you life. I really liked the different relations he used in the essay to compare things. I wish they had told more about how successful Bell turned out to be or if he even got to pursue being a teacher just as Gingold was for him. Overall I did like the essay, and I think it makes some readers think about their hobby or sport and realize all of our coaches and instructors and how much they have helped us grown.

    I agree–the essay does make us realize how much teachers and coaches influence us. Thanks. GD

    Comment by Kylie Murray — August 29, 2008 @ 4:38 pm | Reply

  12. Joshua Bell became interested in playing the Violin at the age four. He loved to play a lot of computer games and sports, but he was committed to playing the violin at the age of 12. “When I became Gingold’s pupil at age 12, he was already a legend at Indiana University.” Joshua loved his teacher Josef Gingold as a grandfather. He was always glad to see him at his concerts when he was there. Also, Joshua was very upset when Gingold had a stroke and died two weeks later. But even after that set back Joshua kept on learning to play the violin and loved it.

    I find i quote to be very truthful. Since he was a legend at Indiana University for playing the violin, that must mean he is a great violinist. Which later on in Gingolds life he won a spot in the NBC Symphony Orchestra, and also became Clevelands Orchestra’s concertmaster.

    Adam: Please select quotes that have some thematic significance to them, okay? The fact that he was legend at the Indiana University is important in what sense to Bell? Explore that idea more fully. I would like to see your responses more fully thought out and developed in the next entries, okay?
    Thanks. GD

    Comment by Adam Oord — August 29, 2008 @ 7:21 pm | Reply

  13. Joshua Bell, at a young age of four, loved playing the violin. At the age of 12, he was committed to practicing and playing the violin. At his first recital he met a man named Josef Gingold. Gingold liked what he heard from Bell and made him one of his students. In the following years, Gingold was not just any teacher to Bell, he started to be more like a friend and then more towards a grandfather. He never pushed Bell to practice non stop because he wanted him to live the life that a child should. Gingold made music more than just a hobby, he made it his life. As he quotes,”My teacher taught me that music could be more than a hobby. It could be a life.”
    I agree with this quote. It shows how passionate one can be towards his or her hobbies and how they can be put into a place in your life. If you dont have passion in your hobbies, it wont “become a part of your life.” I think that you should love what you do and do what you want to do. Even if it means accomplishing hard tasks.

    Yes–Bell’s essay is a tribute to a teacher who showed him his profession. Keep practicing your summarizing and commenting skills. Thanks. GD

    Comment by Brittney Straub — August 29, 2008 @ 7:30 pm | Reply

  14. Joshua Bell loved and had a true passion for music at an early age. By the age of four he was given his own violin. Bell was given the chance to be taught by the one of the greatest violin players in the world, Josef Gingolg. Later Bell and Gingold’s relationship grew more than “student to teacher” but as “grandson to grandfather”; they loved eachother as family.

    This essay shows a great passion for something only few can master. It also shows the great bond between a student and teacher. It was great to see the relationship and the unique bond because it was so unexpected. I thought it was very big of Gingold to treat Bell as he would of liked to be as a child instead of the harsh things that were done to him.

    Good. I am glad you enjoyed the essay. Please proofread for spelling errors, okay? Thanks. GD

    Comment by Gretchen Gobble — August 30, 2008 @ 12:39 am | Reply

  15. The essay “My Maestro” written by Joshua Bell who is also the main character of the story, is about Bell´s love for music and his relationship towards his teacher. Bell was interested in playing the violin already at a young age. His teacher Josef Gingold taught Bell a lot of things. He taught him not only how to play the violin he also wanted him to have a personal relationship with music. Gingold was more than a teacher, he was Bell´s friend and also even as close as a family member. He wanted Bell to have a normal childhood and because of this he did not push him to do anything. Their relationship grew and even when Bell got older Gingold supported him and flew to recitals to see him. Bell learns a lot from his teacher and remembers him as one of the best “ghosts” on his wall.

    “He wanted me to have a normal childhood and was secretly pleased when my mother told him I´d spent all day playing video games instead of music.” This quote is one of my favorite sentences of the essay. It supports the idea of Gingold not only being a teacher but more the grandfather of Bell. It shows how much Gingold cares about his student and is also interested in their lives. I liked this essay because it was really personal and as a reader I could easily project Bell´s thoughts.

    Good. I am glad you liked the essay. Yes Gingold was a teacher who taught the whole human being rather than just a particular skill. Keep practicing your summarizing and commenting skills. Thanks. GD.

    Comment by Perihan Yurtseven — August 30, 2008 @ 1:06 am | Reply

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Create a free website or blog at

%d bloggers like this: