That One Class
Lauren and her 11-year-old son, Jaxon agreed that signing up for band in 6th grade was a great idea. He promised to practice. And to never forget his instrument at school or home. Lauren wanted to believe he’d keep those promises. Finally, maybe, she hoped, band would be the hook that’d make school a positive experience for him.
He had always drummed his fingers, blew air into things, and made weird noises that distracted his parents and sisters. They’d be irritated, but he’d be intrigued. He’d refold papers, bend straws or change his tone to create what he called better sounds.
The middle school band teacher deemed the saxophone fit the shape of Jason’s mouth. Lauren was dumbfounded. What’s his mouth got to do with it? Evidently, a lot. That he was small for his age was insignificant compared to the value of “mouth fit.” After a fair amount of pleading by Jaxon, his rented saxophone came home in June. This was the first summer Jaxon wouldn’t be in day-care because Lauren WFH.
After he mastered putting it together and fitting the reed, the sax sounded like a horn. A loud horn. The boy that loved to ride his bike and swim now spent the better part of every day with this shiny new toy. His mom hadn’t anticipated his full immersion or how intrusive the sound would be. She had to take work calls and be able to think.
The solution was transforming his closet into a music room, setting play times, and allowing him to play it outside for five minutes after dinner. Jaxon named his closet the studio. From online tutorials, he learned the notes and fingering. Lauren found him dancing with his sax on more than one occasion, grinning from ear to ear. As July melted into August, he could play along with YouTube videos.
Last week he walked into his middle school with his sax in tow. Lauren believes band can change Jaxon’s relationship with school – I’ve seen it happen!
©2022 JoAnn Schauf, MS, LLC Your Tween & You | All rights reserved.