Re: Schedule issues for students into HS band.
Posted by Been there on 3/23/2021, 5:21 pm, in reply to "Schedule issues for students into HS band."
I worked in a school that would pull this all the time. Your school won't put them in Spanish because they haven't had Spanish...but will put them in band without any experience? Someone either doesn't understand anything about what you do, or doesn't respect what you do. You cannot possibly bring these kids up to 8th grade standard while simultaneously working with your 8th graders on their current level. Teaching them recorder at the same time you're rehearsing the band is not at all realistic. I would look for an option that creates VERY little extra work you to solve the immediate issue, and work with your administration to prevent this from happening again the future. |
Depending on the kids and how much of a thorn you want to be, here are a few options:
-Give the kids an instrument, and grade them on the same standard as your current 8th graders (who I assume are at least 2nd, if not 3rd, year players). The kids will fail, the parents will complain, you'll have a meeting with admin. Either your admin will find a way to get the kids a schedule change, or they'll tell you that you need to be more of a "team player." This option WILL burn some bridges. You'll get a reputation for being a hard-nose who takes his (her?) program seriously, and for being hard to work with. Choose wisely.
-Set the kids up with some very basic percussion parts. If they want to work, they can probably figure out enough to play triangle or suspended cymbal, maybe even bass drum while your real percussionists play snare and keyboards. Heck, maybe you get some halfway-decent percussionists out of it for next year.
-Set the kids up with some listening exercises they can do while you play. If you can trust them to not raise a ruckus, give them something they can do in 5-10 minutes and they can work on their other homework the rest of class. Simple worksheets that can be repeated daily - what did we work on today? what section sounded good today? what section needs work? You can justify this under the TEKS about "critical evaluation and response." They're joining your class 3/4 of the way through the year, you can't be expected to hit every TEKS with them in the time you have left. You just have to come to an agreement that they're going to check the box on a daily basis, and you're going to give them a good grade, and next year they will choose a different elective.
Options 2 and 3 should come along with a conversation with your administration. Band is (or at least should be) a real class, with real standards, and real grades. If you let them do this without pushing back, it will set a precedent, and they will continue to do it in the future. If you come to an agreement that you're doing it THIS YEAR to be a team player and "go along to get along" in the year of COVID, then it's clear that they can't do this again next year.