Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Education Classes

I wish I could make this is VERSES and do a comparison but I didn't really take any education classes at Lawrence. I think education classes are a very intersting sort of breed of some ways the teachers should be the cream of the crop so that the future educations are learning from the best educators, in other ways it's ok if they're not the best because then we learn from their mistakes. I'm taking four education courses this semester and they are: EDUC 275 - Schooling in the United States, High Brass Techniques, Flute/Double Reed Techniques and Vocal Techniques.

EDUC 275 is basically exploring the history of schooling in the United States. Different problems concerning stereotypes about race, ethnicity, gender, socio-economic standing, etc. how they have been dealt with, how they are still a problem and a few ways to attempt to change the standards associated with them. The teacher, Dr. Aragon, does a good job of explaining how she is directing us when she has us do an activity so that we learn from our experiences. I have also enjoyed having discussions with the other people in the class. It is my personal opinion that future educators are some of the most interesting people to have conversations with. I have also come to appreciate my schooling history because I am in disbelief about a lot of the problems we are learning about because I have never experienced them: my high school teachers (and other teachers, high school is the most fresh) did an amazing job!!! Part of me wonders to what extent my education was impacted by IB, what part amazing teachers, what part my peers, what part my parents/sister and what part being in Fort Collins, oh and of course, what part of just plain old me? I don't anticipate ever being able to answer these questions...but I think about them. I have also noticed how much more hyper-sensitive and aware of how ALL my teachers are teaching me now. I notice things I never would have though about before - especially about gender bias and race. I have also begun to be critical of the stereotypes presented in the media and American culture in general....I have no other comparison from other cultures or I'm sure I'd be critical of them as well.

High Brass Techniques has been the most intersting for me to think about and observe in rather than learn how to play trumpet and french horn. Since I am a brass player I have found that picking up another brass instrument has been very simple and I barely have to think. I have found it interesting to se what the other people in my class, who are not brass players, are having trouble with. I try to think about what I would tell them if I were their private teacher or band director. There are a lot of similarites in how I would teach a beginning trombone student and a beginning trumpet student but there are also a few big differences. I have also found it very intesting to see how my ideas of how to solve learner's problems have varied from my teachers strategies. One of the big lessons I have learned is that teaching transposition is one of the most difficult concepts to grasp and to teach. I start on French Horn next week...wish me luck!

Flute/Double Reed Techniques has been a very in-depth learning experience. I would still not describe myself as adept at flute but I can make some pretty noises. My fingers have a very difficult time staying and moving as they should but the good news is that air support has been no problem! I have developed a much higher regard for my friends who play flute...really anyone who plays flute well, it's harder than I had originally thought. Dr. Moody does a really good job of bringing individuals up to the front of the class and then asking for suggestions instead of just giving us all the answers. Next week I start oboe....we'll see how much better my fingers do with a vertical position, and I'll see if I can learn to breath less :)

Vocal Techniques has had a few very intersting moments: I am apparently a soprano - I had always assumed I was an alto. Last week we looked at pictures and videos of inside the vocal tract when someone is singing and talked about all of the bad things that can happen if you don't take care of your voice. Dr. Heil has a lot of really good experience and knowledge that she is very willing to share with us.

Well....that was a little longer than I anticipated.

So yesterday I hugged my friend Andrew good bye because he went home this weekend and another of my friends remarked that he must really like me because he closed his eyes when we hugged...this made me ponder when I close my eyes when I hug people...I'm pretty sure I close my eyes every time
Do you close your eyes when you hug someone? does it matter who it is?

Sunday, October 11, 2009

So...I've been a little negligent in my postings

You may have noticed that it's been a while since my last post....there's a good reason I promise.

1) I have kind of run out of things to write about. I know that there are still things, I have a lot to say, but it's not objective comparisons or positive things and I would hate for one of my teachers to read this and get the wrong impression

2) I am SO sick of thinking about how CSU is not Lawence, when it's a constant voice in my head it's really hard to get up the motivation to spend 23ish minutes writing about such differences

3) If you haven't heard Romanovsky and Phillips' Emotional Rollercoaster then you won't really understand my AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA. I tried to find it on youtube but I couldn't. or I would have posted a link. You can find a short clip on Amazon if you're really curious.
Anyway...that's what my life has been like and for the past few weeks I have been moving in a mostly downward motion. When Renee is upset with things she doesn't want to talk about them, write about them, think about them or really have anything to do with them. Now, when I'm upset with school I still have to problem. It took everything I had to be able to go to school, do my homework and appear to be mostly normal. The biggest thing that continued to make actually happy were (and are) my amazing friends...but I already wrote a post about them...hence lack of posting.

Here are the most important friends in my life at the moment:

Andrew Deem - he plays trombone and is majoring in Music Education...he is responsible for introducing me to these other wonderful people and is from Colorado Springs

Tiki (Tiffany Key) - she plays flute and is also majoring in Music Education, she went to Rocky Mt. High School here in Fort Collins so we think we've met before but aren't entirely sure

Batman! (Cory Bissell) - he plays bass clarinet in band and trombone in marching band, he is also majoring in Music Education and is from Virginia

Tess Stoops - I actually met through my friend Celeste, she is not in band, majoring in something and we have a Friday date (either breakfast or lunch) that always makes my week more wonderful

In answer to your questions yes, I'm feeling much better, "Things are looking up, it's a great little world we live in..." (extra special bonus points if you know where this is from) and I wil be updating much more regularly now.
Smiles :) :D