Sarah Kim

Sarah K.

12 Reviews
San Diego, CA

About Sarah K.

Background check: Last verified 11/10/2014
Sarah passed a background check on 11/10/2014 that included the following:
  • National Criminal Record Check
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Sarah teaches: Ages 5 and up
Special needs
Teaching since: July 2004
Last sign in: Yesterday
Average response time: 48 hours


I believe that learning to play an instrument doesn't have to be difficult. It should be enjoyable and fun! If your child is a beginner, we will take turns picking songs to ensure that they practice; I utilize stickers and goal-oriented tasks to have fun and encourage students to maintain their interest and also hold them accountable. If you're a beginner adult, I will require more self-discipline from you, but we will still pick songs and genres you want to play, with classical and recognizable folk songs on the side.
For beginner&intermediate students:
For piano, you'll have to adjust your hands in awkward positions; for violin/viola, you'll have to make some unpleasant sounds before you make beautiful ones. So why not make the transition enjoyable?

Regardless of your level and progress, I will be there! I want you to learn songs and genres you want to learn, while doing it the right way (with good posture, technique, theory knowledge, etc.).
I've taught students as young as 3 yrs old and as old as 82 yrs old, students with physical/mental disabilities, group lessons and many different teaching environments.

My Musical background:
I began playing the violin and piano when I was 4 years old. My mother was a piano teacher for over 30 years with contagious passion for music and her students, so with training in perfect pitch, sight-reading, and other musicianship skills, I began performing solo and in ensembles. I soon became an assistant teacher, beginning my own private lessons.
Since age 6, I've been a part of the church choir, school ensemble and later the school band, and orchestra. As I entered high school, I decided to become more active and take leadership in the ensembles. I became the Concert Mistress of the symphonic and string orchestra and held onto my first chair until graduation. I also participated in the San Jose Philharmonic Orchestra, as first violinist. I was a first violinist of the Korean American Music Supporters Association (KAMSA), performing a concert at the Disney Concert Hall. Since 1997, I have won countless awards from CWC Annual Music Competitions, California Music Education Association, KTVN Bay Area Annual Music Competitions, Prospect-Westmont String Orchestra voted Most Outstanding Instrumentalist, and passed all levels in both piano and violin in Certificate of Merit (CM) Tests.

I moved to San Diego to study Music Performance at University of California-San Diego. I became the Concert Mistress of the UCSD Chamber Orchestra and look forward to continuing my education for Music Performance, Music Education, and Music Therapy. In my music career, I've worked in senior communities as the music director, conducted orchestras and ensembles, formed and performed in duets, trios, and quartets, in public and private concerts, weddings, nursing homes, etc. I also am a part of an indie rock/bluegrass band (voice and fiddle) recording and performing, as well as a classic rock band (voice, keyboard, violin). In my free time, I compose and transpose for myself as well as for my students who would like to learn an easier version of a piece, different genres like pop songs, movie soundtracks, TV shows, favorite artists, etc.

*** Lesson Details ***
My main priority in every lesson is to make learning an instrument fun and comfortable. I have a plan mapped out for every lesson, for every student. Depending on the student's age, level and preference of genre, I pick out books suitable for each student, and also ask the student to bring in a piece or book they would like to work on. I find it important to make every lesson enjoyable, so it is crucial that the student enjoys the homework assigned when they leave the lesson. I usually begin the lesson with warm-ups, scales, music theory, then continue with reviewing past homework, focusing on posture, rhythm, technique, etc. Lastly, we will sightread and preview the next pieces to be assigned for homework. Pace is set mostly by the student and how much they practice, but I will always nudge the student to improve in musicianship and posture after every lesson, with patience and perseverance.[There will be an annual/semi-annual recital, optional but highly recommended for all students!]

*** Studio Equipment ***
Full keyboard, instructor's violin and viola, mirrors, music stands, composition notebook and writing utensils.

*** Specialties ***
Classical, Pop, Contemporary, Ensemble, Solo, Scales, Sight-reading, Suzuki, Homann, etc. Perfect pitch: I can also compose/transpose whatever you would like to learn just by singing or showing me the music on YouTube!

Photos and Videos

University of California-San Diego Chamber Orchestra UCSD's Conrad Presbys Music Center Winter 2010


Music Director Dec 2013 - Present
Oakdale Heights

Concerts, musical games, presentations, etc. for seniors in assisted living and hospice.

Instructor Jun 2010 - Present

Violin, viola, piano and theory instructor

Concert Mistress Sep 2008 - Jun 2012
UCSD Chamber Orchestra

First chair


Music Performance and Psychology Sep 2008 - Jun 2012
UC San Diego

Languages Spoken

English Fluent / Native Proficiency
Korean Fluent / Native Proficiency
Write a Review

12 Reviews on Sarah K.

Karina E. Feb 27, 2015
Violin · In home
Verified Student
She is great!
Andrew B. Sep 2, 2014
Violin · In studio
Verified Student
Wonderful instructor. Teaches the low level basics through advanced compositions. My partner has progressed very well because of Sarah's instruction.
Sarah K. Jan 24, 2014
Patient and Humorous

Sarah is like a friend I visit once a week. My first violin lesson was almost a year ago and I came to Sarah very nervous, without any experience in music. In just two lessons, she taught me how to read music and play a song. We now play duets of songs we feel like. Sarah is a talented teacher and also makes her students feel comfortable.
ida W. Jun 8, 2013
Verified Student
Shes an excellent teacher

Sarah is very good teacher, she's very nice very friendly but yet strict, so she can push the student to do their best
Jake B. May 19, 2013
Verified Student
She's awesome

Sarah has the knowledge and the abilities to both teach verbally and demonstrate physically any style of you would want to learn. From classical, modern/pop, bluegrass or Irish fiddling, or just theory. You can learn it all from Sarah. Highly recommend.
StevenB2 Mar 20, 2012

Sarah has motivated and offered instruction to my son. He has increased his playing ability and practices more frequently. Great Job Sarah!
LanaS Feb 26, 2012
Personal, Patient, Knowledgeable, Talented

Sarah knows how to teach music in a calm and organized manner. She tailors the classes toward what is requested and is delighted to help as much as possible.
EsperanzaR Nov 11, 2011
Sarah K

Sarah is an excellent piano teacher. She is very patient in teaching beginning student like me. Highly recommended.
SylviaM Oct 26, 2011

Sarah is y second violin teacher at TL. She is a very good teacher. She teaches me how to improve my posture and and she gives me good cues about music theory. Her lessons are very personalized. She helps me with songs I want to learn that are not in the regular violin istruction books and even transcribes them for me. She keeps me motivated and I enjoy my lessons every week.
JessicaC Oct 12, 2011
Sarah is a wonderful teacher!

I take violin lessons with Sarah and she is a patient and detailed. She makes things clear and easy to understand. She's an excellent teacher!