Reply To: Rhythm Syllable Systems

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When I first started teaching, I tried doing numbers with the little guys because “they are going to have to learn them eventually, why not start now?” But they got hung up on what number to say, and their accuracy and confidence was damaged. I have them use a tonugeing system “too” and “too ka” which they use through third grade on their recorders and into their middle school band career. At some point in band, we really do need to switch to numbers in order for them to really understand what is going on in the rhythms. The strong background in the other system only helps them with counting it on numbers. I don’t think it is necessary for the HS and MS/elementary schools to use the same systems. You do what is working for your kids now, and the HS teacher will just have to transition them. If you give them a strong foundation, the transition wont be hard.