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Inspiring Teacher: Charlette Moe, assistant professor and assistant director of choral activities

NDSU Challey School of Music’s Charlette Moe is a respected music conductor and an admired educator. She teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in music and choral education, with the goal to prepare students to be outstanding music teachers.

Moe coordinates NDSU’s Master of Music in music education program and supervises student teachers. In addition, she conducts Cantemus, the NDSU women’s choir, and the University Chamber Singers. 

She joined the NDSU music faculty in 2008, and has more than 15 years of experience as a public school choral teacher and classroom music teacher. She was nominated twice for Minnesota Teacher of the Year, and has given presentations at music conventions across the Midwest.

How did you decide to pursue your profession?

Though I never met my grandmother because she died eight years before I was born, she influenced me to be a music teacher. Not only did she teach school while being a single parent to four young children during the 1920s, she played piano for the silent movies that came to her small rural town. The wonderful stories I heard about how she motivated students through guidance and high expectations led me to a career in teaching.

What do you like best about teaching?

Teaching is a privilege and provides an amazing opportunity to witness the intelligence and beauty in humankind. Observing students strengthen their commitment to community, develop a desire to understand others, discover their strengths and weaknesses while growing in their academic pursuits is beyond inspirational.

What is your teaching philosophy?

My philosophy is connected to the art of practice teaching. Conveying knowledge is a difficult task. Teachers continually adjust pacing, delivery, reflection time and content to respond to their students’ needs. Whether you are a beginning teacher or a teacher with many years of experience, teachers continue to practice the art of teaching to discover the most effective responses to encourage student learning.

In my methods courses, I hope to create experiences for students to practice the art of teaching by asking them to deliver content in a meaningful way.

What are common traits of successful students?

Successful students analyze situations, discover their individual paths to achievement, continually seek out knowledge and are committed to strengthening their skills. 

Successful students also are patient with themselves and understand that learning occurs over time.

How have you grown as a teacher?

I hope I have grown as a teacher, but often times I feel that the older and more experience that I acquire, the more I realize that I do not know nearly enough about teaching.

What is your favorite NDSU tradition?

The singing of “The Yellow and the Green.” 

Moe earned her bachelor’s degree at Concordia College, Master of Science degree in music education from Minnesota State University Moorhead and her Doctorate of Music in conducting at NDSU.


Student Focused. Land Grant. Research University.

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