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Have you ever taken music lessons?

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Photo of Hillary Yoder

“I’ve taken piano and trumpet lessons, but I didn’t really like it. And I play sports, so I didn’t really have time to practice.”

Photo of Randy Walter

“Yes, to play the piano. I’m actually going there this evening. I don’t really like it, but my mom makes me go.”

Photo of Lauren Fleming

“I did band last year. I played the clarinet, but I just kind of lost interest.”

Photo of Tommy Kitchen

“Yes, to play the alto saxophone. It’s easier than the trumpet, which I used to play, and it has a sweeter sound to it.”

Photo of Sarah Shin

“Yes, for the piano. I’ve been taking them for two or three years now. I think I’ll continue to take them because I want to play fun and beautiful music.”

Photo of Lexi Gonzales

“No. I love music, but I’ve never learned to play anything.”

Photo of Josh Eaton

“I was in band last year, if that counts. I played the trumpet, but I quit to play football.”

Photo of Cody Hagemeier

“No. I tried to join band, but I got kicked out.”

Comments

sunflower_sue 6 years, 7 months ago

Band was cut from my grade school for lack of funding. In middle school, I did choir for 2 years. Loved it. Didn't have room for that elective in high school, though.

I'm w/ sgt's family. My kiddies had to try an instrument or sing for 1 year. Then, if they hated it, they could quit. They both chose band. The eldest plays the trombone and the youngest plays the clarinet. The youngest also has a guitar on which she knows a few chords. Oh, and neither one has shown an interest (yet) in quitting.

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Godot 6 years, 7 months ago

Yep. Snare drum for marching and jazz band, tympani & glockespiel for orchestra, piano for jazz band, classical guitar, and vocal lessons for concert and jazz choir; lots of fun. My kids picked up the drums and guitar (self taught) and are much better than I ever have been or will be.

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tangential_reasoners_anonymous 6 years, 7 months ago

Yeah, I had a "music lesson," once... My music career abruptly ended with the theft of my tenor sax from an Elementary summer music camp storage room. It was the only item taken, with much more expensive items untouched. Someone WANTED that instrument (... AND I know you're still out there, probably reading this post, smiling, self-satisfied, to yourself... while I sob openly, "Cure for Pain" playing in the background... but I'm not bitter... no, not me... no way... hoo, boy...).

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sgtwolverine 6 years, 7 months ago

I tried piano a long time ago and violin in sixth grade; neither one really stuck. There may be an instrument I'd like to try yet, but nothing too serious; music doesn't seem to be where my talents lie. Sometimes I wish I did have musical talent, and other times I don't really mind.

Oh, and in my family, we had to try an instrument for one year. (One school year.) If we didn't like it, we could stop, but we at least had to try it. I think that was a good thing.

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canyon_wren 6 years, 7 months ago

I think an introduction to piano is good for most kids--just so they understand a little about reading music, although maybe in SOME schools, kids are learning that? I took piano several times while growing up, and actually tried to play the violin in the junior high orchestra, but wasn't always even sure just what PAGE we were on, so I wasn't much of a violinist! But I did sing in church choirs and chorus in high school and college (even under the great Clayton Krehbiel at KU!), and am able to play the piano well enough to entertain myself.

My daughter took piano for about a year at age 11-12 and didn't like it, so we let her quit. I agree with all of Pywacket's comments. No one should be forced to take it for, say, longer than a year or so if he/she isn't really interested. And I agree 100% that it is a form of child abuse for parents to try to live vicariously through their children's accomplishments. That is so sad!

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JJE007 6 years, 7 months ago

I was given music lessons by a hateful old fart with two stomachs and four chins. I think the lessons were "free" with the purchase of instruments at this particular music store. You get what you pay for. It was sad. I quit those particular organ lessons!~)

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coolmom 6 years, 7 months ago

i love music but learned very early that i had no talent at all, my twin decided that if she couldnt play she would sing. i remember a few days into chorus the teacher telling her that there was no shame in lip synching lol. it was eye opening for both of us so we moved to sports which was much better.

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RETICENT_IRREVERENT 6 years, 7 months ago

OldEnuf2BYurDad, I like your re-phrasing of the question.

Yes, I have been given music lessons Started out on a tracker pipe organ. Strings, brass and the squeeze box was left to my own accord.

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OldEnuf2BYurDad 6 years, 7 months ago

"Taking" music lessons sounds like theft. Shouldn't it be "have you have been given music lessons?"?

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Pywacket 6 years, 7 months ago

Randy, I feel your pain! My mom made me keep going to piano lessons for 10 years because (what else?) "I've always wished I could play but we couldn't afford lessons when I was a child..." To this day, I tell her she should've spent the money getting lessons for herself, then. By the time I finally just refused to go any more (at about 16), piano playing was so associated in my mind with penance and misery that I never had any desire to play again.

If kids want to try an instrument, I think they should have to commit to a certain amount of time--6 months? maybe a year? just so they will gain some self discipline and reach some level of competence / feel the rewards of learning to play a few tunes before stopping, if they want to stop.

They shouldn't be able to flit from (costly) interest to interest, dropping something the minute it gets a little difficult. But after an agreed-upon time (and well short of 10 years!!), it seems counterproductive to force the kid to continue if she is not a good fit for that instrument. Parents could always give the kid a chance to try a different instrument (and spend the money on lessons for that), or art lessons (which I would've loved), or something else that would enrich their lives. They're kids! They may need to try on a lot of things before they find the perfect fit. If they're not allowed to do so, they may never learn that they would've been the next Bird or Art Tatum or Picasso or Beckham..

From my own experience, I'd urge parents to drop the fantasy of gaining vicarious pleasure through making their kid do what THEY wanted to do (be it piano or football). If the kid wants to do it, great. But if she or he wants to try something else, let them pursue their own dream. And if you've always wanted to learn piano, piccolo, or guitar, take the lessons yourself. It's never too late. Maybe when your kid hears you playing and sees the enjoyment it gives you, the kid will actually give it some thought.

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mom_of_three 6 years, 7 months ago

was in band from 5th grade through college. Never took music lessons though - unable to afford it. hubby did as a kid. mine have not.

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blue73harley 6 years, 7 months ago

After flunking flute-o-phone in third grade, I knew that I was musically impaired.

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matahari 6 years, 7 months ago

Don't feel bad Cody! I got kicked out of band also~ Pick up the guitar or drums, it may be something you actually enjoy doing~

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