All Star Teacher 2013: Ruben Modesto
Ruben Modesto teaches music to high school students and is a band director at John H. Pitman High School in Turlock. In his 13 years of teaching, he has taught many different music classes, currently teaching classes such as ensemble, symphonic band, concert band, jazz band and color guard. As band director, he runs the school’s marching and pep bands, which perform at home football and basketball games and concert competitions. In 2012, the band was invited by Governor Jerry Brown to participate in the 2012 National Independence Day Parade in Washington DC. In addition to band, he has been known to break dance in dance skits with the students and at Pitman High School rallies.
Mr. Modesto believes teaching is about making individual connections with each student. All students have the opportunity to be successful, and everyone, from the all-state level players to the newest members, is an important asset to the band. His musicians are encouraged to self-assess, monitor their progress and strive toward an appropriate articulation of their individual learning.