6th grade band lessons started today.......

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by PhatmonB6, Sep 19, 2005.

  1. PhatmonB6

    PhatmonB6 Mezzo Piano User

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    Jan 16, 2005
    Minnesota
    9 students playing trumpet broken down into two groups, that meet with the teacher once a week for a 1/2 hour. This first week they were told to buzz their mpce for 15 minutes a day, 5 different days. (the student picks the days he/she wants to buzz), until their group meets again next Mon. Brigitte told me that none of the other kids have played trumpet before. Here is my question, since she has played before and usually practices for a half hour does she continue to stick with her normal practice routine or does she follow the teachers instruction. When I asked her why she did not practice today after school she said she buzzed her mpce and was just doing what the teacher had assigned. My take on this is that she should continue to practice as she has in the past along with the weekly lesson the teacher hands out. Any advice would be helpful.
    Thanks,
    Robert
     
  2. BPinard

    BPinard Pianissimo User

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    My best advice (I know I'm not a teacher) would be to tell her something along the lines of:

    "Even though buzzing your mouthpiece helps a litte bit, it can't make you a great trumpet player. In order to get better, you have to practice with the mouthpiece in the horn. So far, you're practicing playing your mouthpiece. In band, you don't play the mouthpiece, you play the mouthpiece AND the trumpet."

    I know that some people might disagree with what I'm saying there, but I'm sure you know what i'm trying to say. Just let her know that she'll get better from practicing with her trumpet attached. :-)
     
  3. Billy B

    Billy B Pianissimo User

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    Nov 5, 2004
    Des Moines, IA
    Find her a private teacher ASAP. While buzzing may have advantages in certain situations, it is generally agreed that this is not how we play the trumpet, but rather is used as a type of physical therapy. At this age these kids are going to assume that buzzing is how e play the trumpet. 15 minutes of mouthpiece buzzing will destroy these kids.
     
  4. tpter1

    tpter1 Forte User

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    She should stick with her normal routine by all means, and show the teacher where she is musically in her development. Maybe he can re-assign her group to one which is more her level and will provide more challenge. Or maybe pair her up with one of the other players as a peer mentor. If she is past the rest of her group, private lessons will keep her motivated.
     
  5. Trumpet Hobo

    Trumpet Hobo Pianissimo User

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    I never thought that just buzzing would make me a better trumpet player, I was just listening to what my teacher said.That does not mean that I will just buzz for 5 days. :-)
     
  6. MahlerBrass

    MahlerBrass Piano User

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    Oct 1, 2004
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    Story time! I had a kid last year who started beginner band with a broken arm. He couldn't physically pick up the horn until his arm healed, so we worked on everything just buzzing, and did a lot of basic theory in lessons (scales, solfege, etc). Six weeks later he finally gets the cast off, finally gets to play on the actual horn after all this time, and the kid sounds great! He ended up being the all-star player of his class, even played better than a lot of seventh graders, I don't think this is mere coincidence, but maybe it's good to spend a lot of time on the mouthpiece.
     
  7. tpter1

    tpter1 Forte User

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    MB- Interesting story. How much, do you think the success of this student could also be due to the time you invested in solfege, theory etc? During that time was there also alot of listening?
     
  8. Manny Laureano

    Manny Laureano Utimate User

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    Glenn,

    If Mr. V. were here you could ask him.

    The part I left out in that story about his early days was that, with the exception of the buzzing, that was precisely what he and the musicians of his generation did. A year of ear training, solfege, and theory and then you started your instrument.

    In other words, you learned trumpet without the encumbrance of having to learn all those things AND your instrument concurrently. Having said that, that's how I learned, instrument and music rules at once.

    ML
     
  9. tpter1

    tpter1 Forte User

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    I find it particularly interesting that this student experienced a large success learning much the way Mr. Vacchiano did. That's a cool parallel.

    I would re-think my teaching strategy, but so many kids now are accustomed to the immediate gratification of microwaves, DVD's, TiVo, and overnight shipping that I think it would cause real problems for me in the long run (attrition).

    This does, however, point out the importance of a good general music program in the schools. Not only to make players out off kids, but more importantly, to train kids' musical thought processes. It lends credence to the idea that general music is the backbone of any music program.
     
  10. Billy B

    Billy B Pianissimo User

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    Des Moines, IA
    I recently had an 8 year old come to me for lessons. He has been playing for two years. His previous teacher had him play the first year with no written music. He learned songs using solfege. The kid sounds great.
     

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