Fun and Inclusive Piano Instruction for Ages 4+!
Hello and Welcome! I’m Sam Whitesell, a versatile pianist and innovative music teacher based in Burlington, Vermont, USA, and founder of Burlington Piano Lessons.
One of Vermont's most sought-after performing pianists and private music instructors, I'm equally at home in the worlds of Classical, Jazz, Pop, worship music, and beyond.
At Burlington Piano Lessons, I strive to maintain a teaching environment that is safe, supportive, welcoming, nurturing, and compassionate, empowering kids (and adults!) to be their fun, authentic, wacky, creative, and imaginative selves!
Working with kids with ADHD, Autism (including PDA), Dyslexia and other neuro-divergencies and/or who otherwise have an abundance of energy, imagination, and self-direction is a passion and specialty of mine!
As a neurodivergent adult, I empathically bring valuable insight into the unique functioning and learning patterns of neurodivergent individuals, particularly in the field of music learning and piano playing, from my own lived experience and ongoing learning.
I'm particularly drawn to the neurodivergent theory of Monotropism, a neurodivergent affirming model for Autism (and possibly for ADHD as well), with strong implications for learning environments and learning models that tend to work best for neurodivergent students.
I also really enjoy supporting retired adults in rediscovering their musical dreams of which they may have lost track, helping them find self-fulfillment, develop confidence, overcome self-criticism and self-doubt, and get in touch with a deeper sense of Self.
I believe imagination, play, and freedom of self-expression are all important aspects of the creative process of music learning, and that music itself is a natural form of creative self-expression.
I subscribe to a whole-person approach to music study integrating Body, Mind, and Spirit. With adult students especially, we even sometimes explore music study as a meditative practice.
An avid life-long learner, I enjoy staying on the cutting edge of both in-person and online music instruction!
I love to stay up to date on the brain-based science of learning and it’s practical application to music study.
I also love keeping up with the ongoing scientific exploration of ADHD and other neuro-divergencies including Autism Spectrum and PDA--the unique gifts they bring, and their impacts on learning and child development.
I also love supporting the community as pianist for local middle school and high school students in performances and auditions.
I teach lessons both in-person and online out of my inviting home studio near the shores of beautiful Lake Champlain.
I look forward to exploring together all that music lessons can offer your child and your family!