Teaching Kids???

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by note360, Feb 10, 2008.

  1. note360

    note360 Piano User

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    Any way, my band teacher is starting to give out the names of the trumpet players in the Symphonic band to give kids lessons/tutor them. It is good money for a 15 year old to make and all. I know ill end up having one eventually probably.


    Any suggestions. My main thing was gonna be getting the little one into the habit of a constructed daily warm up, some basic studies, and if he wants a bit of jazz. I am not a technical player, and my tone is good, but unique to me, so i feel queasy trying to teach some one technically or classically, especially sense I think more in jazz theory as that is the way I learned theory peiced together with a psuedo classical/jazz theory approach of my theory teacher. I mean jsut suggestions would be nice. I dont want to take vital things into my hand (mouthpieces, embrochures, etc) because thats not my place unless I see something extremely wrong (some one starting out on a 1C or using a weird cup and not knowing it) as I am not a professional.
     
  2. ozboy

    ozboy Mezzo Forte User

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    I really don't want to sound negative but I have a strong belief that starting a beginner should be done by someone who possesses a lot of experience. I have been playing for 36 years and have taught for the last 20 or so on and off. It frustrates me when I get someone as a teenager who has a problem that is the result of poor teacher which is difficult to alter as it is so ingrained.
    I know you mean well but I think your teacher is placing you in a difficult position.
    My dad, who is 77 used to live with a Chinese Horse Breaker in outback Australia. He would visit big stations and break in 30 or 40 horses at a time. Dad said he was the most natural horseman he had ever seen. (That coming from my Dad was a compliment as he was no slouch himself).
    Because Wongie was Chinese, the Station Owners would try to rip him off. He went to a station and the boss said "Wongie. I have thirty horses I want you to break"
    Wongie said "No worries Boss. They cost you 6 shillings each"
    "But hang on,"said boss"there are 10 there that someone else has handled!"
    Wongie Replied" You show me those ones boss. They cost you 12 shillings". True story.
    There is a fair element of that in early teaching. Wongie felt that he had ability and he didn't want a student that had developed bad habits as it took longer to fix them than to start from scratch.
    If you do teach them as there may be no one else available or affordable encourage them to get lessons or master classes from more experienced players. Also seek as much advice as you can. This site is terrific as there are some very knowledgable people who freely give advice.
    I know this is probably not the answer you wanted. Sorry!!
     
  3. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    I think that if the teacher closely follows the program, everyone can benefit. Like learning to be a school teacher, the basic curricula needs to be established and monitored. I would not be as worried about warm up and the like as in a daily routine that covers breathing, basic tone production and reading musical notation. That routine should be established by the teacher and monitored by the students.

    It would be questionable at best to have the students develop a program for the beginners! They simply do not have the experience to turn what they see and hear into suggestions for improvement! This is not like baby sitting or remedial math tutoring.
     
  4. Alan Dismukes

    Alan Dismukes Piano User

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    It is true, however, that often the teacher benefits from teaching. When you have the responsibility of teaching someone else, you end up learning yourself.

    Does this apply to teaching trumpet? It should, but the benefits for both tutor and tutoree must be weighed against the risk of teaching bad habits. I agree that the band director should closely monitor what is being taught.
     
  5. commakozzi

    commakozzi Pianissimo User

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    Yeah, I hate to sound negative, but that's just not a good idea. Now, if every trumpet player in your symphonic band plays like Ruben Simeo at 15 then great! But I doubt that's the case. And as far as a warm-up and daily routine goes, I regularly incorporate breathing, tone production, articulation, and scales into my warm up, so I would disagree with rowuk. There IS a debate among some trumpeters on what a warm up should consist of and some players insist that a warm up is not required at all. The fact is that everyone is different and each of us "requires" more or less to get ready to play the horn. However, I feel like everyone can benefit from a good slow introduction to the mechanics of the horn EVERY morning. I spend a good amount of time in the morning getting my lips ready to play. I do a fair amount of breathing and then buzzing without a mouthpiece, and then with a mouthpiece sitting at a piano to check pitches. And when I feel like I'm getting a solid sound with no breaks between pedal C and G2 on the mouthpiece I then move to the horn. By this time I would consider myself to be fairly "warmed up", but I still play for another 20 mins in what I call my "warm-up routine". The extra time is spent on long tones and scales, but I wouldn't really call that part a warm-up per se. So just to reiterate, everyone is different but you can incorporate a "warm-up" with your daily tone production, articulation, and scale exercises. Don't get me wrong though, I come back to each of these aspects later in my day.

    Sorry to drone on. Tell your band director that he should encourage the students to ask their parents if they can take lessons from a local trumpet teacher of unquestionable value and experience. They shouldn't be too hard to find and even two lessons per month can help a lot! They won't be too expensive either.
     
  6. flugelgirl

    flugelgirl Forte User

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    Definately, teaching at your level of experience is a bad idea! Mentoring, however, can be done. Your teacher should be teaching them the basics of how to play, but it definately never hurts a younger player to spend some time with a more experienced player, even if it's only by a few years. By all means make friends with one of the younger kids and get together and play duets and talk about music - just don't assume that you have enough education to take their money for it. Mentoring is a really great thing - when you can say you've helped to inspire someone to be better it's a great feeling, and you won't have to be afraid of messing them up! Find yourself another way to make money for now, and start making friends. :)
     
  7. note360

    note360 Piano User

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    YEah I actually agree with you guys personally. I don't really care about the money that much and all that stuff. I would prefer not to do it as I actually have little time for it between school, having a band everynight, meeting with my band and social things on the weekends and all that stuff. I barely have time to fit in weekely lessons wiht my teacher as it is. So I am really not sure about even attempting this.

    I was just asking waht you thought. Also it is a requirement of Tri-M (music honor society) to tutor a younger player atleast once. However, this isnt a big deal as tutorign basically means ur nto taking there playing into your hands or changing them your just trying to help them learn a peice which I can kinda do.
     
  8. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

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    I taught a long, long time, and despite state of the art pedagogical skills, the determining factor was the willingness of the student to improve, and the willingness and ability to listen themselves critically, but non-judgmentally. There is plenty of room to encourage and offer tips and tricks without messing with folks' chops.
     
  9. ozboy

    ozboy Mezzo Forte User

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    The problem comes when you cannot identify when a person requires changes, or when they require a mouthpiece change or when a student requires a specific exercise or program to remediate a playing weakness.
    If these problems are not detected, and the player keeps playing, the problem can lead to a good deal of unnecessary frustration.
    If you think your roll is to motivate and the student thinks you are there to teach, it can lead to problems.
    Just by giving a student inappropriate things to play, you can, inadvertently, mess with their chops without trying.
     
  10. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    The problem on the front is that in many rural areas, it is tough to find enough affordable teachers period. Many schools have problems even keeping enough music teachers!

    In a well managed program, the "honors" students can pass what they know to the BEGINNERS. The basics of tone production, notation, articulation can all be adequately handled by a proficient high school student. The prerequisite is the program from the music teacher: long tones, slurs, fingerings, simple tunes.

    Maybe this is not the very best way, but isn't life very often a comprimise? I see benefits for a stressed out band teacher, an incredible opportunity for the student, AND a decent way to sort out the kids that want to or don't want to. I quit trumpet in the 7th grade because the clarinet playing music teacher could not communicate (to me). We got an additional teacher in the 8th grade, he was the guy that lit my fire. The 6th and 7th grade may have been MUCH better for me if I had had one of the honors players though!

    Junior High and Grade school players look up to the high schoolers. I think the motivational factor could be very good for the program. After a year of student tutorage, the dedicated are easily picked out for advanced studies with the band director or a private teacher. The chance that the grade schooler will join the high school band is also greater because of the ties generated by the student tutor!
     

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