Reply To: Scheduling Issue – Repeating Students
I live in this world most of the time! I teach in an afterschool program and in each choir we have everything from honors students who sight-read fluently to kids who have never heard of solfège. Why not take advantage of the gap by asking returning students to partner with a new student and help them learn a concept? Do this for just a few minutes each day, to avoid the new kids getting frustrated. And don’t be afraid to repeat a piece or two. Kids love being surprised with something familiar, especially if you introduce it in a different way – break it into small chunks on rhythm syllables or solfège, and gradually build it up into a song until someone goes, “Hey! I remember this!”
Don’t be afraid of repetition. It may not seem like it, but middle schoolers thrive on “traditions” – warmup routines, signature pieces, etc. Even little things help build a sense of community, as long as they are also building a healthy sound!