God bless the music teachers…

Tonight was Cheyenne’s last 8th grade orchestra concert.

The final orchestra concert of each school year in West Fargo is always the all-city concert.  Grades 6-12 come together at the high school and play a few pieces individually as a grade grouping (6th, 7th, 8th, and 9-12) and then they play one piece all together. The whole concert is under an hour, but it is clear that countless hours go into the preparation for that one hour.  All of those students coming together to create a beautiful noise doesn’t just happen as a matter of course; rather, it is an act of dedication, practice, guidance, and patience.  The dedication and the practice comes from the kids, but the guidance and a whole lot of patience comes from the music teachers.  Many of these kids began their musical career in school music in 6th grade.  Such was the case with Cheyenne and her viola.  I can tell you that she has come an awful long way from those first few months in 6th grade orchestra and the excruciating sounds she elicited from the viola.

The West Fargo School District has three teachers that work with the orchestra – Suzanne Larson and Lindsay Schwartz at the middle school level and Heather Klundt at the high school level.  These three women are the place where orchestra lives in the West Fargo School District.  They work with hundreds of students to create an understanding and appreciation of orchestra music.  They develop the discipline and help feed the passion that creates musicians.  I truly cannot imagine how they accomplish all they do at the level they do it at – they are clearly amazing.

I have said it many times before, but I’ll say it again – God bless the music teachers!  The selfless souls that bring joy to not only those who learn to play, but also to all who have the opportunity to listen.  It is a powerful and necessary contribution to our well-being – to express oneself through music, to feel the emotions of music, to allow music to feed our soul – and it often all starts in middle school music.  What a gift these women and music teachers everywhere give us – they deserve our thanks and applause.

Thank you Heather Klundt, Suzanne Larson and Lindsay Schwartz – I offer you a standing ovation for all you do with the kids in the West Fargo School District! ;-)

Day one thousand four hundred and five of the new forty – obla di obla da

Ms. C

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About Ms. C

I teach at NDSU...but I remain a student of life with all the enthusiasm that entails. My favorite saying is, "Sometimes you have to take the leap and build your wings on the way down." In the new forty that is what I am doing...building my wings.
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3 Responses to God bless the music teachers…

  1. tim haering says:

    I never had a good academic music teacher. “Music Appreciation” classes were pretty lame. We did not have “band” until high school, back then. And I did not play anything, was not interested in playing anything. But by and by, I picked up some guitar. And I found the best music teacher in all the land, Jon Weber. Everything I know about music, I owe to Jon, alias “Mrrrfphf.” Listen to one of his shows, “Piano Jazz with Jon Weber,” and you’ll know why. God bless the music teachers.
    http://www.scetv.org/index.php/pjjw/upcoming

  2. bill says:

    I have three kids soon to be four at cheney. I’m okay with the music offering but what I resent is the requirement that an instrument be played, and that choir is not considered an option to replace that. It costs me $90.00/month for instrument rental and next year it will be $120.00/month. We’re lucky enough to be able to afford that but it does have an economic impact on us as a family. I wonder how the low income kids can afford it? Choir needs to be added as a replacement for an instrument imho. It’s a pretty expensive requirement when 95% of these kids will never pick up that instrument again after middle school.

  3. Katherine says:

    And to all the elementary music teachers who do the prep. Music is so important.

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