We continue our teacher introductions with Mr. Ryan Pollock, the Music Teacher at St. Viator Elementary School. This is Mr. Pollock’s first year at St. Viator Elementary School, even though he is already a private guitar and bass teacher. In his words, “[T]his is my first year teaching in a school setting. I’m happy to spend it at St. Viator!”
Working in accordance with COVID-19 Restrictions, Mr. Pollock sets up Music Class in an empty classroom. He then streams with each class during their Music Class time. This great combination of in-person and virtual teaching ensures St. Viator students can still enjoy Music Class!
Mr. Pollock attended a music college in St. Paul, Minnesota, where he majored in guitar studies. He told us that the school shut down unexpectedly during his second year, forcing him to take a semester off of classes. Mr. Pollock moved to Chicago in 2018 where he completed his degree in music composition at Columbia College Chicago. Mr. Pollock shared that his favorite thing about teaching is “the moment that something “clicks” for my students. There is no better feeling or payoff in teaching than when my students are able to take the information I give them and put it to use.” When asked specifically about St. Viator Elementary School, he shared that he likes the welcoming and supportive environment. Mr. Pollock told us that everyone has been so kind and helpful to him during this first year of teaching. Let’s learn more about him!
What is your favorite color ?
What is your favorite food ?
This is by far the toughest question on this list. I would have to say my mom’s bow tie pasta served with Italian sausage in a creamy tomato sauce. I find myself cooking this dish a lot but nothing ever beats your mom’s cooking!
What is your favorite holiday ?
When is your birthday ?
Do you have any hidden talents ?
On the weekends I produce for Dean Richards at WGN Radio. I also produce and compose music for myself, other musicians and companies under a recording company I started a couple of years ago.
What is your favorite drink to get your morning started?
Coffee, with or without cream and sugar.
Anything you can tell us about your family or pets?
My younger sister, Allyson, is currently studying Early Childhood Development in Kansas City. I enjoy talking to my parents on the phone everyday after work. When we all get to visit each other we enjoy playing competitive (often heated) board games.
Do you have any hobbies?
Oil painting, rollerblading and playing in a street hockey league.
What is something you wish the parents of your students knew?
I fully understand not everyone is cut out for, or interested, in music. I HATED music until my 6th grade year. With that said, I treat all of my students as if they are musicians and expect 110% out of them when they step into my classroom. I am less concerned about their musical ability and more concerned with their attitude toward trying new things.
What is the most helpful thing a parent can do for your class this year?
Trade music libraries with their kids! I hope parents teach their kids about the music they grew up listening to. I hope parents get their kids out of their musical “bubbles” and introduce them to music that isn’t on their Spotify playlists. I also encourage parents to listen to the music their kids are enjoying.
What professional accomplishment are you most proud of?
Reaching a point in my music career where I can work to inspire the next generation of musicians and teach my passion on a daily basis.
What is your favorite book?
12 Rules for Life
Who is your favorite author?
What is the farthest place you’ve been (in the world) from Chicago?
If you weren’t a teacher, what profession would you choose?
Music producer or radio host
Who is your hero?
What extracurricular activities are you involved in at St. Viator?
None due to COVID, but I’m excited to see what activities St. Viator has to offer under normal circumstances.
We hope you have enjoyed getting to know Mr. Pollock a little better. If you caught his performance during the Spring Fling, you know that talent that he brings to St. Viator Elementary School. If you ask students about Music Class, you see them light up and get excited - Mr. Pollock clearly brings something good to his classroom environment. And it goes well beyond the “Boomwhackers”, even though those are a favorite among the students!
If you are interested in learning more about St. Viator Elementary School, please visit our website at https://www.stviatorchicago.org/. We will continue highlighting our newest teachers and posting that on the website, so keep checking in to read more about our staff. St. Viator Elementary School is currently accepting applications for the 2021-2022 school year. Please contact us at 773-545-2173 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information, to request an application, or to schedule a private tour.