Sunday, May 17, 2015

Pitch Day

Pitch Day is complete, and overall, I think that it went very smoothly! I had a sufficient number of props, including an iMovie compilation of personal videos, a poster discussing my plan for the project, and my trombone just for show. Starting with my mom, I gave presentations to almost every parent present, and each presentation was about the same. My speech definitely could have been more polished and rehearsed, but my listeners at least seemed to understand what I was talking about. I also lucked out by being occupied whenever the superintendent walked past, so I didn't have quite as much stress as I could have had! I was able to answer all the questions presented to me, and there was never a moment where I felt extremely uncomfortable. Although it was a good experience, I'm glad Pitch Day is over!

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Pitch Day Anticipation

     Pitch day is right around the corner, and I'm starting to feel the stress! Before pitch day, I need to create a PowerPoint presentation, and formulate a more specific script of what to say about my passion. I also would like to have set the dates that I will be traveling to the elementary schools, so I have more details to share about my plan. So far, things have gone very smoothly with the planning process for my end goal. I have made some pretty good progress, and the only bump in the road was getting the courage to make a phone call. 
     I am feeling nervous about Friday already! It is overwhelming to think about all the work I have to do, combined with my other obligations this week. I think that it will be a good experience, and probably very fun once I get the work over with, but I have other things to worry about before then. 

Sunday, May 3, 2015

All About Pitch Day

For pitch day, I would like to use a slideshow presentation, along with several pictures and/or videos that clearly display my love for music. I could include photos of people who have inspired my passion, and videos of my favorite musical performances and experiences. Through this presentation, I would talk about how my music career has been affected by people and experiences, and explain how I would like to provide this same inspiration to young students beginning with the music program. Once I introduce myself and my influences, I can begin to talk about my plan for the final product. My hope is to encourage the new band members to continue to work hard and appreciate the opportunities they have. I want to share my passion for music, and inspire others to develop the same love that I have. 

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Contacting a Professional

      I was very nervous about making a phone call to the elementary band director. I have always been awkward on the phone, but talking to a teacher (who I know) made my nerves even worse! However, once we got into the conversation, it wasn't any different from talking to him in person. It wasn't nearly as bad as I thought it would be!
     I've gained an understanding on several timing issues and challenges that will need to be solved in order to reach my end goal. One possibility would be to leave school right after fourth period, and make it to the elementary school in time for their last rehearsal. This way, I don't have to worry about dealing with missing school. I also have a greater understanding of some contributions I could make during my trip to the elementary school. For example, I may be able to work one-on-one with students during their instrument's sectional period to provide individualized instruction on technique and musicality. 
     Through this process, I have gained experience with communication, and advocating for myself. Communicating over the phone is one skill that I will have to use a lot later in life for similar scenarios, such as coordinating job interviews. Also, I have realized that my mom won't always be around to help me through this type of communication. Therefore, I have to learn how to take a chance and do it myself. This was a good learning experience for problem solving and stepping out of my comfort zone. 
     Next week, I hope to be able to figure out specific activities or ways to help with the students when I travel to the school. Also, I would like to narrow down the possible dates of my actual trip. 

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Findings Through Research

Starting with my research has helped me answer a few of my questions from last week. I learned that the most effective way to teach kids music is to do minimal talking, while keeping their intent interest. It is very important to be prepared, and know what you're doing. This allows you to focus on critiquing and correcting the musicality, technique, and accuracy. I also learned that there are many official internship opportunities for college students, which is a great opportunity to get more experience about teaching music to younger students. 

As for the questions that cannot be researched, I have been considering different scenarios and possibilities in order to answer the question on my own. One of my questions was regarding transportation. Of course, there would not be a bus to drive me to and from the school, so the only method of transportation available to me would be my mom. If she would be willing to drive, that would eliminate the potential use of Skype or FaceTime to communicate. Also, I do not believe that the school has an official policy for missing school because of something that is school related, but separate from a club or class. However, if I were to talk to the administration about my particular case, I am sure that they would allow it. 

Since I have started my research, I was wondering if I would be eligible for the same opportunities as a high school or college intern would have. Even if I am not planning on being a band director, would I still be able to work with the kids as an unofficial "intern?"

Although I have not worked out any of the details, I am getting excited about the possibility of persuing my idea. The most important lesson I learned through research is that being prepared is the best indicator for success. I have only begun to scratch the surface of the necessary research, so have not done anything that I have not done before. 

Monday, April 13, 2015

Changing Society Through Music

My goal for bettering society through music is to encourage young kids to continue with music throughout their lives, and to show how much of a gift music is. I could use my passion to teach or perform music to both kids and adults to show my love for music. Not enough people appreciate the opportunity to make and listen to music, so it would be my goal to increase this appreciation. The ideal outcome to my genius hour project would be to take a trip to one of our elementary schools or the middle school to spend time and interact with the young musicians. I could either tell them about the importance of music, play with them during a rehearsal or sectional period, or lead a rehearsal. I would love to tell them about my personal experiences and thoughts about our music program, as well as music in general, in hopes of them continuing throughout their lives.

Inquiry Questions for Further Research
1.) What would be the most effective approach to encouraging and teaching the kids about my passion?
2.) How and when would I get to and from the other school? Would it be just as helpful to meet over Skype or FaceTime?
3.) What could I say to the kids that would keep them interested in their future music opportunities? How do I express my love for music without boring them?
4.) What does the school policy say about missing part of the school day if it's for a school-related purpose?
5.) What kinds of jobs are available for teaching/performing music? Would these jobs be worth making time for?

Monday, April 6, 2015

Passionate About Music

Ever since I was young, it was evident that I had a natural gift for music. I loved listening and dancing to music, seemed to have a sense of rhythm, and picked up tunes easily by rote. I first became directly involved in music when I started taking piano lessons at the age of seven. I picked it up quickly, as I did with the trombone at age ten. I joined chorus as soon as it was offered to me, and loved it all. In middle school, there seemed to be endless musical opportunities, and I wanted to participate in as many as I could. In addition to chorus and concert band, I sang in the small chorus ensemble called Raise Your Voice, played in jazz band, Christmas Brass, middle school marching band, York County Honors Band, and picked up the fife for Fife and Drum. Everything was a blast!

As I entered high school, music became more time consuming, therefore it plays an even bigger role in my life. I performed with the Panther Marching Band for the first time, and played in the pit of my first musical, Peter Pan. I auditioned and made it into the York County Honors Choir. I continue to play in Symphonic Band, Holiday Brass, and Jazz Lab. Each musical activity has taught me something different about music and character. Fun trips and other big performances are definitely a bonus, as well as the friendships I have made through the years. I am sure that music will be with me through my life, no matter what career I choose, who I'm with, or where I go.

Two ways I could better my community by using my passion are both teaching and sharing my gift of music. I have considered pursuing opportunities to become a music lesson instructor. To share my gift, I could go to nursing homes, hospitals, or other places to perform for the people there. By doing these things, I wish to spread my love for music, and bring happiness to others.