Reply To: Starting on horn in 4th grade–yea or nay?
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It’s definitely a debate, and coming to a decision depends on a number of factors. If you feel comfortable enough teaching horn, go for it. Also, in my experience it works out okay if you have small group pull-out lessons. Where I teach now we only have “full band” for beginners, so I do not start horn players. When I did teach in schools with pull-out programs, I did offer horn to beginners, and (I know this will sound odd) I put them in the alto saxophone group. The reason I did that is because the timbre of saxophone, and the ease they can get a pitch made it much easier for my beginning horn players to hear and match their pitch. It’s still a challenge, but doable.
That said, when I’ve taught high school I just would switch good players over to horn to fill my section. It was not necessarily a trumpet player either. One of my best horn players was actually a flute player, but he was a smart and talented kid and picked it up really fast.
Good luck with it