How do you tell?

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by TeDo, Sep 20, 2011.

  1. TeDo

    TeDo Guest

    Okay. A situation occurred today with easy child/difficult child that has me wondering how to differentiate between Aspie thinking/rigidity and just plain ole typical teen behavior. He has been complaining since school started 4 weeks ago about having to practice his saxophone 75 minutes a week. His band teachers have always told me how musically gifted he is and how quickly he catches on to the music and how good he is. I agree with them wholeheartedly, although I have no idea where he gets it since I can't read a note much less "create" music (noise is more like it when I do it). He already has all the music numbers they are working on down pat. He has a lesson book that he is working on but he plays each thing once and HAS IT. He doesn't understand why he still has to practice so much since he already knows the music and what he doesn't know only takes like 5 minutes. He even went to the teacher to ask her because my response has been "the teacher expects everyone to do it". He told me this morning that it's stupid that HE has too because the other kids NEED the practice but he doesn't.

    Is this type of thing Aspie thinking or just typical teen rebellion? How do you tell the difference at this age?
  2. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Its a curse that goes with talent. For some of these kids - it really does come that easy.

    Some options... Ask the teacher if your son can challenge a second instrument - if you can afford to do so. This means they have to learn ALL the music for BOTH instruments. Second instrument cannot be in the same family... if he's playing trumpet, then #2 can't be trombone... it could be sax, or flute, or keyboard...

    Is there jazz band? Klezmer band? Pit orchestra? Some teachers will allow all of THAT practice time to count toward class practice, as long as you have your class music learned. Same goes for community orchestra, church band, etc.

    See if the teacher can get harder, star-level parts for the same pieces the others are playing - have your son add some real pizzazz to the whole band. These pieces, he can't whip off in 5 minutes.

    Just some ideas...
  3. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    I agree, it's a curse that goes with talent. But it doesn't seem like he enjoys it. Too bad. Sax has so many nuances.
    I like Insane's idea.
  4. pepperidge

    pepperidge New Member

    You know we are facing similar questions in a way. Maybe these kids are just plain right. maybe if he can be as proficient as the teacher demands, he shouldn't have to practice more than 5 minutes a day. Maybe for him practicing the same things for 75minutes isn't going to make him appreciably better.

    Maybe the question to the teacher is, am I meeting your standards in 5 mins a day? What can you help me to make me a much better musician and make it worth the while to practice 75 mins?

    Maybe sometimes our kids, with their defiance and stubbornness really do see the flaws in the system. So do we tell them to put up, or do we help them challenge the system?
  5. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    If he can learn to play one instrument from each "family", it provides a solid base for becoming a band teacher, for example.

    And... if he can find an instrument he loves, then he will play it just for the love of it - and its not hard then to get your minutes in.

    75 minutes of practice a week? My band-playing kids would LOVE to have a load that light. Try 100 mins in elementary, and 150 mins in HS - and yes, that's per week.
  6. crazymama30

    crazymama30 Active Member

    You know, if I was him? I would be ticked off too. If he can learn it and do fine, honestly? I think I would I would let it be his problem to solve. He is 13, let him handle it and he can practice if he thinks he should. You could remind him, but I would not make him. Just my two cents.
  7. keista

    keista New Member

    I was gonna say BOTH (Aspie and typical teen thinking)

    All the suggestions are great. You didn't say what the teacher's response was? Honestly, I'm wondering too.

    I wondered the same thing about this whole practicing mastered skills concept when son was getting 100's on his spelling tests but getting a failing grade - he didn't do the spelling triangles whose sole purpose was to help the kids get a good grade on the test. WTF? But that's comparing apples to pineapples. I know there are lots of subtleties to music, but if he does indeed master them in less time, then I don't see the point of mundane exercises.

    by the way "perfect pitch", or something very close to it is very common in Aspies. I've always wondered where son was on that scale, but he has no interest in music, but can identify singers' new songs by knowing their old ones, he can cross identify cartoon character voices, recognize different notes or chords when a cover band is playing, etc. And the music stuff he really doesn't care about but identifies it when he hears it.
  8. TeDo

    TeDo Guest

    She said she's not going to make exceptions for 1 person. She told me at conferences tonight that he should not practice the concert pieces any more because he does have them down. She said she wants him to work just on the lesson book (she skipped book 3 and put him on book 4 and everyone else is just beginning book 3) and go as far as he can each time he practices. She said she wouldn't be surprised if he got through all of book 4 before Christmas. He was happy to hear all the compliments but I guess time will tell if it makes any difference.
  9. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    She gave you a wedge. She has admitted he needs enrichment. So... the door is open to push for the other forms of enrichment also.