Reply To: Addressing Different Entry Points into an Orchestral Lesson
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Do the students play the same instrument? Have you offered private lessons to the students? If you have and it’s not an option, I believe that having a “lunch bunch” would be a great opportunity to try out! What is a “lunch bunch” you say… well it is when you offer those students extra help throughout the week during lunch. I know that you might have to cut your lunchtime down, but it could potentially help these two students.
What grade level are we talking about? 6th-8th? Are you the only music director in your school district? Another idea that could work is have either the other music director or even the best player in your orchestra (obviously a student in the same section) work with them during orchestra rehearsal. This would give them extra help during the class period. The only problem with this option is you need to choose a responsible student that can help assist. If you find someone that will mess around the whole time can just create more problems.
I do like the idea of having them work through Essential Elements Book 1. If you assign these to the students, they can practice them at home and possibly play them for you during the “lunch bunch” or the other experienced student. If they have not made it through the EE book, I think it is a good opportunity to clarify and enhance the problem spots in their fundamental skills.
I hope these ideas help you and best of luck on your first year!!