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Distinguished SOTW Member/Forum Contributor 2009
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3,286 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I'm a lucky dad. I've now got two of my three kids playing saxophone. My son (11) is playing tenor and my daughter (9) is starting alto. My step-son (7) is still a bit young, lol, but maybe we'll inspire him in a few years.

Gotta say, it's been a trip. I'm having an awesome time in the evenings spending a half hour to 45 min helping them master the basics -- embouchure, scales, working through sheet music. I've managed a few simple duets with my son, which was very cool. And I've been able to help on gear -- my son was struggling with the original mouthpiece I got him, so I found him a vintage Meyer 6M that has a smaller tip and chamber and his tone and control went through the roof. Likewise, my daughter was playing my alto mouthpiece (fairly large tip Soloist) and when I got her a smaller tip she started to really get some control.

I'm not going to be able to teach them forever -- I'm a weekend warrior blues player, competent but not exceptional. But I'm having a great time getting them rolling, and it is very cool to make some noise together and watch them start to figure it out.

Anyone else teach/teaching their kids? Any fun experiences or advice?
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2013-
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5,443 Posts
All I got is a great big smile and warm fuzzy congrats on having such a cool experience.

The word awesome is so overused now as to often be meaningless, but I think it fits fine right here.

You really are a lucky dad!

I would have given an great deal to have had what you got going on. Very, very cool.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member/Forum Contributor 2009
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3,286 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks man. Heck, I'm partially just happy because it gets them off their video games for a while each night. Ha. But it has been awesome so far, for sure!
 

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Distinguished SOTW member/, Official SOTW Sister
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19,489 Posts
Daughter #1 wanted to play clarinet.
I gave her my Buffet to start on and see if it was what she really wanted to do.
I showed her how to assemble it, put on the reed, hand position, and the embouchure.
She blew low E to throat Bb. I called my old teacher to see if he had an available day/time for her.
I refuse to 'teach' my own spawn. Answer questions, help work out a tricky passage, but not teach.
Lessons are sometimes taken more seriously when coming from someone other than a parent.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member/Forum Contributor 2009
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3,286 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I refuse to 'teach' my own spawn. Answer questions, help work out a tricky passage, but not teach.
Lessons are sometimes taken more seriously when coming from someone other than a parent.
Yep I hear that. It'll be interesting to find when I've hit the "wall" in terms of teaching them. Mine have been pretty open to me as teacher so far, but we'll see when we cross the line and they need an external influence.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2014
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5,271 Posts
I'm a full-time middle school band director and my kids want absolutely NO help from me. My son plays oboe and my daughter bassoon. Some kids are willing to spend time with parents but for my kids paying a private teacher was a much better solution. I really envy parents with kids who are interested and ask for help. Maybe someday.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member/Forum Contributor 2009
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3,286 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I'm a full-time middle school band director and my kids want absolutely NO help from me. My son plays oboe and my daughter bassoon. Some kids are willing to spend time with parents but for my kids paying a private teacher was a much better solution. I really envy parents with kids who are interested and ask for help. Maybe someday.
As my kids are starting, I become increasingly amazed by your position. The sheer number of kids looking to you for guidance on a day-by-day basis seems remarkable. It hit home for me when my son's octave mechanism came out of alignment. All he knew was that he couldn't really play. I grabbed the horn and tried it and, sure enough, realized the problem. But if he didn't have a parent who plays, or a music teacher like you with time to test each kid's instrument (!!), or a private teacher (not typical in their first year of band), he would certainly have become frustrated playing a malfunctioning piece of equipment. I wonder how you manage that with a full classroom of kids...
 
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