Sunday, November 10, 2013

New Ventures into Pedagogy

     Most people that have met me within the past ten years do not know that I once studied Music Education, with a focus on percussion. I first started playing back in fifth grade. The first time I picked up a set of drum sticks I was hooked, and I annoyed my family all the way through high school. Rudimental Percussion was my thing, but after four years of college I became exposed to a wide variety of percussion instruments. After all that time and energy I burned out. I boxed up my drum pad and left the world of music far behind.

     Fast forward twelve years, I am now an Instructional Designer at Boeing. My music career, or lack there-of, all but a distant memory. That was until I started noticing what I will refer to as a "natural rhythm" developing in my son. That's right, without any prompting on my part I began to notice him drumming to songs - and he stays on beat. The last few months I've began to re-gain that passion for playing that I once felt. I pulled out my drum pad and started playing, it still felt natural, like I had never quit.

     I began wondering, "what could I do with my combined percussion and instructional design experience?" Could I use my knowledge to develop lesson plans to inspire and teach my son the world of percussion? I thought hard about it but I worry that my son would see it as a chore and not an exciting activity. And then a funny thing happened, I ended up coaching my son's soccer team. I had never played soccer before, but that didn't really matter. The goal for U6 soccer is really to inspire kids to enjoy the sport. Humm, I wondered if there was anything like this in the area for percussion? There's not. In fact, there's not much like that in the United States.

     Over the past few weeks I've began forming a vision. Create a kids percussion ensemble that would generate a love for playing percussion, teach them to play in groups, and perform in front of crowds. There's a lot of work to do, and a lot of questions. For example, where would we practice? How will I recruit enough kids? How will I get instruments? 

So many things to do before I even design my first lesson.