Friday, February 13, 2015

Year 5: Week 22 – The Delay

Last week we had a snow day on Monday, which meant that my 8th graders' band assembly performance was, reschedules for this wee on Wednesday. This seems like good news right? With another week and a half of class we could rehearse more and play better. Kind of . . .

Performances, especially with younger students don’t necessarily get with time, but with my 8th graders we managed to keep the momentum going, which was a challenge.

About two months ago I displayed my lesson plan chart so they could see how many classes there were before the concert. We discussed very carefully what we had to get done in the time before our performances and with some direction, my students created the lesson plans leadings up to the performance.

I was really impressed with their plans and we had a really good couple weeks leading up to our performance date. As the students rehearsed we made some modifications to the plan and with the performance looming, they focused in and got down to the business of making great music.

The Friday before that Monday snow day, when we were originally scheduled to perform, we ran our rehearsal in the auditorium. We tried some different things in the space, ran through our pieces and all felt really good for the upcoming Monday performance.

After finding out about the snow day and working out a time that we could make up the assembly, I struggled to figure out what to do with my kids. Could I really make major improvements in the coming week? Maybe, there were things that could be fixed and worked on but I worried that trying to do so with kids who were already started to get tired of the music,

I decided that first off I had to keep their chops in shape and I also had to keep the pieces fresh. We did some technical work, did some spot work, and reminded them of things we had worked on while purposely not introducing new things for them to think about correcting.

The energy wasn’t great during that week of rehearsals but they understood what we needed to do and when the performance finally came, they brought it. I told them today that the they should appreciate from each other is that every single one of them did their best to make the performance as good as it could be.

The delay was tricky but my kids handled it really well and as proud as I am for their musical performance, I’m even more proud that they gave it their all despite things not going as planned.

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