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Old 09-03-2009, 09:37 AM
 
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My 12yr is in the middle school band. A very good program that leads to the High School→ which is TOPS in the Nation.
He's in the percussion group. So he plays the snare, and zylophone, etc. He said yesterday "Dad, I' Dont want to play drums anymore." He really want's guitar(hero) lessons. (I blame guitar hero for this.► I think).
I bought a faily expensive drum set (electronic) & drum training software 6 months ago... AND I play myself. We practice together...AND he's a natural at keeping a beat. He makes his mother cry when he plays the full kit so well. so--?
I'm torn between how to handle this.(he's been in percussion for 2 years)
► Should I continue to make him practice?..→ and keep training WITH him
► Or should let him just quit.?? (this is different from sports~ I think)

I've told him I would get him guitar lesson ~IF~ he continues to play his required drum lessons... etc.
He said no.


What's a Dad to do.. ?
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Old 09-03-2009, 10:03 AM
 
2,893 posts, read 5,629,802 times
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Putting pressure on will just make him resent the instrument and the music. Keep the stuff, let him branch out, and I bet he returns to percussion for enjoyment and relaxtion when the pressure is off.

I grew up learning organ and piano. I hardly even touch them anymore, but instead branched out into saxophone, harmonica, folk percussion, and mandolin. As long as he's doing something musical, it's not a bad thing.
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Old 09-03-2009, 10:05 AM
 
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Tough call, Dad!

In my house, music lessons are required. You don't get a choice about that. There are so many benefits to musical instruction that you can't even begin to list them, even for a kid who has little aptitude or desire when starting out.

Piano lessons were required when mine were young (for a good base). I always explained my goal to their teachers: 1) I want them to learn to appreciate music and 2) I want them to enjoy making music. Anything more is gravy.

As they got older, I let them choose another instrument.

However - if they choose another instrument, they have to commit to that instrument for a minimum of one year and in one-year increments after that.

So if this were my kid, I would have had a talk with him before school started and he would have had to commit to playing the drums for the full school year. If schedule and such allow, he could take lessons with the guitar, but there would be no question as to finishing the year with the drums.

This allows a set, neutral time for making the decisions about whether to continue with an instrument. As opposed to at the end of a bad day a school where the band director scolded him, or finding out that the new hot girl in biology class loves the guitar. (I'm not saying this is what happened to your son, I'm just giving examples.) Kids are fickle.

So it also teaches kids about commitment and sticking with something even when it's hard - because at the end of the year, they may have jumped a hurdle and end up liking it more than they thought they would.

I wish I had a nickel for every time I quote Tom Hanks: Of course it's hard!! If it were easy everyone would do it!

FWIW, both my kids continue to enjoy music and take lessons. And even though they occasionally complain, they are both making progress and are eager and proud to perform.

I don't know if any of this is helpful. It's just they way I look at it.
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Old 09-03-2009, 10:11 AM
 
Location: The Milky Way Galaxy
2,256 posts, read 6,557,004 times
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My mother started me out on the saxophone when I was in 3rd grade. I did it all the way and including my senior yr of HS. Lots of times I just wanted to quit in the middle. I am glad my mother pushed us (basically said no keep doing it lol). Looking back there are so many intangibles that I can't really explain in which music has helped me. Also I am glad to have been a part of so many musical groups (band, marching band, jazz band, orchestra, pit band, etc.) by the time I was in my senior yr of HS. It is one of the things I was glad my mother pushed me to do and I look back at it with nothing but good experiences even though I hated it at times (especially in my middle school yrs).
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Old 09-03-2009, 10:55 AM
 
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I'd let him go for guitar lessons. And I would hope he would still "play" with you on the drums for fun. You never know, perhaps he will enjoy both. I just wouldn't put out a lot of money on instruments unless several years passed with proven results.

I played several instruments, enjoyed them all. Hated piano lessons, but now wish to take them again.

Music should be fun and enjoyable.
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Old 09-03-2009, 11:11 AM
 
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Age 12 is a hard age to let a kid up and quit anything. A lot of schools have really competitive percussion sections - its usually one of the most popular. Is there an interpersonal dynamic with other section menbers? Is there additional schoolwork pressure this year? MAybe talk to the band director. I would tell my child stick with it until winter break, and if you still feel that way we'll discuss options.
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Old 09-03-2009, 12:05 PM
 
Location: beautiful NC mountains!
904 posts, read 2,735,636 times
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I think I am going to have a different opinion than most. I say, let him quit. As long as he does something, it really doesn't matter if it is drums or guitar.
This is not your life, it is his. When you say that he will go on to a high school that is "Tops in the nation", it sounds like that is something you want, not something he wants. You need to take your feelings and wishes out of the equation and listen to what he wants. Maybe he wants to try guitar or maybe he wants to try soccer. It really doesn't matter, does it? As long as he isn't sitting on the couch playing video games every afternoon it should be his choice. If you push him to do something he hates, he will resent it and you.
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Old 09-03-2009, 12:14 PM
 
1,156 posts, read 3,526,113 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VBmom View Post
I think I am going to have a different opinion than most. I say, let him quit. As long as he does something, it really doesn't matter if it is drums or guitar.
This is not your life, it is his. When you say that he will go on to a high school that is "Tops in the nation", it sounds like that is something you want, not something he wants. You need to take your feelings and wishes out of the equation and listen to what he wants. Maybe he wants to try guitar or maybe he wants to try soccer. It really doesn't matter, does it? As long as he isn't sitting on the couch playing video games every afternoon it should be his choice. If you push him to do something he hates, he will resent it and you.
I don't disagree with you generally - it is his life. But right at the beginning of the school year, to just announce he wants to switch - is this a short-term desire or a serious change of heart? Even as an adult you usually have to transition out of something you are involved in, so I think a "cooling off" period might be a good thing.
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Old 09-03-2009, 12:33 PM
 
Location: southwestern PA
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I don't see what is wrong with him wanting to learn another instrument!
That is a GOOD thing in my book.

Let him expand his horizons and find something of his own... and not just be stuck doing what you like to do.
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Old 09-03-2009, 12:42 PM
 
2,222 posts, read 10,206,368 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VBmom View Post
I think I am going to have a different opinion than most. I say, let him quit. As long as he does something, it really doesn't matter if it is drums or guitar.
This is not your life, it is his. When you say that he will go on to a high school that is "Tops in the nation", it sounds like that is something you want, not something he wants. You need to take your feelings and wishes out of the equation and listen to what he wants. Maybe he wants to try guitar or maybe he wants to try soccer. It really doesn't matter, does it? As long as he isn't sitting on the couch playing video games every afternoon it should be his choice. If you push him to do something he hates, he will resent it and you.
I agree with you completely.
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