Glenn’s Trumpet Notes

News & Tips for Trumpet & Cornet Students

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My Windy 6th Grade Brass Players

Posted by glennled on October 1, 2010

Nine boys and I have now had three band classes together.  The oldest boy in the group just turned 12 last week. They are the trumpeters (8) and trombonist (1) who play in the second-year elementary school band which practices at 7:45 a.m. at Skyview Jr. High in Bothell. On the first day, we played a name game to help me get acquainted—they already know each other—and since then, we’ve worked on lip slur exercises, “Apollo Fanfare,” and “Cameroon.” For fun, during warmups, we play some little tune on our mouthpieces like “Happy Birthday” and “Old MacDonald.” I play a phrase, and they repeat after me.

Today, after talking about proper breathing using the diaphragm, we had a contest to see who could play and hold Concert B-flat the longest. The guy who won the first round had to drop out of round 2. Then the winner of round 2 had to drop out of round 3. Finally, we were down to the last two guys, and that established the order: every guy now knows how windy he is (i.e., his  lung capacity), as compared to his classmates. They’re competitive, and it was fun! We’ll do it again someday to see if there are any changes. It pays to practice…

Next week, the new kids in first-year elementary band start work. The band director was a master recruiter this year–about 70 kids signed up, paid their fees, and rented or purchased their horns. That’s terrific! Next week, we start learning music together. Stay tuned…  🙂

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