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Tots with Tempo has an amazing team of dedicated teachers to serve our families. Click on a name to learn more about your music specialist.
Katie Kraft, Owner/Alexandria/Arlington
Melissa Peterson, Alexandria/MVPCP
Olivia Williams, Bethesda/CCCC/Silver Spring
Meghan Herring, Kingstowne/Leonardstown
Katie Kraft is the creator and primary instructor of Tots With Tempo. With a degree in Music from the University of Virginia, an Orff-Schulwerk Music Education pedagogy certification from Boston College, a K-12 teaching certification through Montclair University, and early childhood music training through Music Together in Bologna, Italy, Katie brings her passion and knowledge for music to every Tots With Tempo class.
Katie graduated from UVA in 2003 and started teaching general music, chorus, and piano/guitar lessons at a K-6 elementary school in New Jersey. There, she discovered what a powerful role music can play in a child's life.
In 2009 she moved back home to Virginia to pursue her true passion--early childhood music. In June of 2009, she started Accelerando Music, Tots with Tempo's parent company. Accelerando Music offers private piano, guitar, and voice lessons, and is still operating today!
It wasn't long before Accelerando Music and Tots with Tempo were making a name for themselves across the Northern Virginia and D.C. circuit, winning awards such as "The Most Awesome Music Class for Kids" and "The Most Magical Music Class for Kids" by Red Tricycle readers, as well as "Best for Families" by Washington Family magazine voters.
Today, Katie is married to Logan Kraft, a mechanial engineer by day and a rock star by night! Katie and Logan have an acoustic duo together that performs at weddings, private functions, and events around the D.C. area.
In April of 2014, they were thrilled to make their duo a trio, when they welcomed their son Holden to the world. In January of 2017, their trio became a quartet when their daughter, Jovie Rae, was born. Holden and Jovie are now not only the inspiration for many of Miss Katie's Tots with Tempo songs, but the guinea pigs, as well. So we can honestly say all Tots with Tempo material is kid-tested and approved!
Olivia Williams is a D.C. area pianist who started playing piano at the age of seven, although she has been inspired by music for as long as she can remember. Olivia’s great love of performing began with her first recital just a week after starting lessons. She won her first competition at Harford County’s music festival at the age of twelve, studying with Kazuko Ikemoto. Later, she joined Piano Prodigies and studied under director Elizabeth Borowsky. At fifteen, she won the Helena Zurstadt competition and was runner up for the Rockville Competition for Piano and Strings.
Olivia studied under Dr. Eva Mengelkoch at Towson University for her B.S degree in Piano receiving the Department Award Scholarship at Towson University. She was selected to be one of her department representatives for a student council in the Center for the Arts and Communication. In spring 2020, she was chosen to perform in Towson’s department-wide showcase, PRISM.
Along with performing, Olivia loves to teach. Being able to spread the gift of music is something she is thankful for. She can’t wait to begin teaching every day because helping children understand and fall in love with music is a magical experience. When not teaching, Olivia loves going for long walks, working on puzzles, and finding fun recipes to try.
Melissa Peterson loves teaching music to students of all ages! She believes that music and the joy it brings are for everyone of every age! She is a graduate of Mercer University in Macon, GA with a B.A. in Music (Organ Performance) and Psychology.
She lives in Fairfax City and has been a piano teacher for five years in her home studio. Prior to that she has served as church organist in two different churches for thirteen years (also as a Pastor and currently Pastoral Care Assistant at Washington Street United Methodist Church in Alexandria).
She served as Piano Accompanist for all Fairfax High School choral groups for three years which included accompanying concerts, special performances and soloists, annual choral assessments, and a trip to the White House for a special concert! She has also enjoyed working as a lead Preschool Teacher.
Melissa loves teaching music because music has brought such joy and purpose to her own life and she enjoys guiding and equipping students to find their joy and passion in music as well. She enjoys watching all students, whatever their age or level of ability, grow in confidence as they discover their unique gifts and abilities. She enjoys the little tots very much as they are so real and honest, no pretenses or games! They are so unconditionally loving that her heart is warmed more and more each day in their sweet presence!
Melissa lives in Fairfax City with her husband and two dogs, four cats, and a hermit crab. She loves animals and sea turtles and environmental conservation!
Meghan Herring is a Maryland Licensed and Board-Certified Music Therapist. Her love for music started at the age of 8, when she auditioned for her first community musical theater production. At age 11, she started taking private voice lessons and her love for music continued to grow.
Meghan realized she wanted to make a career out of her passion for music and helping people. She went on to study music therapy at Elizabethtown College and graduated in 2016. She has experience working with many populations including geriatric, hospice, developmental and intellectual disabilities, autism, eating disorders and other psychiatric disorders, and early childhood.
Through her work she developed her own private practice and focused on working with children and teens with various diagnoses. She has seen how powerful and important music is for development and learning. She is very excited for this opportunity working with Tots with Tempo.
Meghan lives in Leonardtown, MD with her husband, three dogs, and her son, Hunter. Aside from music, she loves reading books, playing with her dogs, outdoor activities, and most importantly, watching her son grow and develop conservation!
All new families are invited to attend a free class on us. Schedule your free demo today and get rockin'!