Ashley Maeshiro (Saturday, 07 November 2020 01:32)
For Mililani-Ike this week, I observed Lauren teach kindergarten classes from home. I think that grade K is way more different compared to grade two and three because the students are so young. The
students are generally a lot more vocal and speak up when they have something to say. It’s hard for me to tell if the students behave the way they do because of their age, or because they have not
experienced real school in-person yet. There are also challenges that the students face that take a little more thought for me to realize. During one of the classes, Lauren was doing the song “Rain
on the Green Grass” and was adding body percussion. The students were supposed to clap on the words with the green boxes around them (“green” and “grass”) but one student was confused. There were a
lot of students who were clapping randomly, but it seemed like this student was struggling because they could not read yet. I’m not sure how I would help that student.
Watching Lauren teach each class, it was impressive how she adjusted each activity for each class. She did not teach each activity the same way for each class. Depending on how the students reacted
and how quickly they were getting the content, she changed her pacing. I think that I need to work on adjusting on the fly. Sometimes if the students react in a way that I wasn’t expecting, I start
to trip over my words when I give them feedback or I lose my place. Lauren is also really good at redirecting comments that may be a bit irrelevant at the moment. She does it in a way that still
acknowledges what the student said, but also puts the student back on topic.
Ashley Maeshiro (Saturday, 07 November 2020 01:31)
This week at Highlands, I ran sectionals for beginning band. The majority of students have received their instrument mouthpiece and care kits, so we have been working on mouthpiece set-up and how to
create sound. The original plan was for me to go over hand position and a few fingerings for the flutes (they do not have a “mouthpiece” to practice on since the headjoint is a part of the flute),
embouchure for oboe, mouthpiece set-up and embouchure for single reeds, and air direction and buzzing for brass. We ended up having a slight change of plans before class started.
Since Daniel and Clement work as a team, they try to make sure that they work on the same things with their students. Daniel teaches a beginning band class for period one, but Clement has a prep for
period one, and we have a beginning band class during period two. After Daniel taught his first period, he came over to Clement’s side and told him what he did with the students. He had the students
take their mouthpiece test, which they have to pass before they can get their instruments. (They also have to pass an instrument care test, which they already took.) For the mouthpiece test, the
students have to hold out a steady sound on their mouthpiece for a certain amount of seconds, and they have to play a short rhythm exercise. I kind of had to wing it during class since I didn’t
exactly know what the mouthpiece test was going to be on. During the sectionals, I had a hard time getting the students to a place where they could attempt the mouthpiece test. Most of the flutes
were able to get through it because they just said “to” for the mouthpiece test. The oboe player was struggling to get a sound out, and she also could not read the rhythm exercise. The single reeds
took a long time with setting up, so we barely had time to play. The brass players’ struggles varied, so I couldn’t get through all of them. Personally, I felt a bit uncomfortable trying to get the
students to do the mouthpiece test before I thought they were ready. I wasn’t sure how to help everyone in the amount of time that was allotted for each section. There were so many different factors
that the students were struggling with that it made it a bit overwhelming trying to address all of them at the same time. After reflecting on it, I realized that the students trying to digest all of
the things that I was trying to have them do was probably way more overwhelming for them than it was for me.