This past semester I have been student teaching in two middle-school choir classes. It has been an experience. I have learned that all those rehearsal strategies I spent the last two years learning mean nothing if you can't get the students to sit down and be quiet. I have learned that choir students do not want to listen to explanations, they want to sing. I have learned that depending on the mood of the class, a lesson plan can go extremely well or absolutely nowhere. And I have learned that I can and do genuinely love people even if they drive me crazy and even if I sometimes don't know their names.
To the parents of M, who flip houses for a living: please do stop forcing your daughter to switch schools. This is her second this semester, and she has said you may move before Christmas. She is so hard-working and loves being involved, but that is hard when you keep uprooting her.
To the parents of E: at the beginning of the semester I thought your daughter may not speak English, because she was so quiet and shy. But she has an excellent musical ear and picks up her part faster than anyone in the section, and has really blossomed socially. I hope you encourage her continued musical development.
To the parents of H: your son is smarter than he thinks. I hope he realizes that soon.
To the parents of C: your daughter has a beautiful voice, and I hope you allow her to take lessons and that her teachers are aware of the caution needed in working with a young voice.
To the parents of B: your daughter is incredibly bright, and I hope both you and she realize it. She reminds me often that she does not read music, but I'm starting to think she can read more than she knows, because she picks things up so fast.
To the parents of G: your son has ADD. I know his tendency to be a constant distraction is not malicious, but it does make things very difficult for me. He craves attention and responsibility. Some teachers will not be as forgiving as I am, and it would be a shame for him to end up hating school because he gets in trouble so often.
To the parents of A: your daughter seems to be going through something difficult. I don't know what it is and she hasn't said anything to anyone, but her behavior has drastically changed in the last few weeks. Don't let her just give up.
To the parents of P: your son is a joy to work with. He is always willing to do what I ask and loves singing. I hope you allow him to continue with choir.
To the parents of M and S: your children are in different classes right now, but I hope they somehow end up together. Both are eager beaver singers and would make the cutest choir couple.
To the parents of J: your daughter seems to have been through a lot. When I talk to her I feel like I am talking to an adult, and she defies my requests like one.
To the parents of R: your daughter makes me laugh every day with her no nonsense attitude. Way to raise her.
This is a small fraction of the things I would like to say to the parents of my children. Though I only see them for less than an hour a day, I care about all of them. Your kids are great-be grateful that they are yours.