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how do i practice vocals during my current teaching job?

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darkclaw3000
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i'm a guitar/ukulele instructor by day, superhero by night. most of the classes have around 30-40 students, and a lot of times i really have to talk in a very loud volume so that i may be heard by them. very noisy kids. have to shout and 'get fierce' at times to demand discipline. as everyday i've been doing this, it does take a toll on my voice.

but having knowledge of singing techniques here, i would like to utilize this time to 'train' or 'practice' my vocals during my 'very loud talking' period.

in CVT terms i think im using Overdrive all the time while teaching.

maybe i can get some suggestions as to how to train my vocals while teaching those little devils?

they are mostly preschoolers. ages 13 n below.

ALSO! how to prevent my vocals from dying of constant loud talking!

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i'm a guitar/ukulele instructor by day, superhero by night. most of the classes have around 30-40 students, and a lot of times i really have to talk in a very loud volume so that i may be heard by them. very noisy kids. have to shout and 'get fierce' at times to demand discipline. as everyday i've been doing this, it does take a toll on my voice.

but having knowledge of singing techniques here, i would like to utilize this time to 'train' or 'practice' my vocals during my 'very loud talking' period.

in CVT terms i think im using Overdrive all the time while teaching.

maybe i can get some suggestions as to how to train my vocals while teaching those little devils?

they are mostly preschoolers. ages 13 n below.

ALSO! how to prevent my vocals from dying of constant loud talking!

darkclaw3000: Just to be silly: 1) Sing your instructions, and insist that all communication in the class be by singing. Once everyone gets done laughing, you will have a completely different tone in the class. 2) talk less... give short, specific instructions, and then have them play more of the time. 3) teach them songs, and have them sing while playing. Nobody, even a 13yr old, can talk while singing .

I hope this helps.

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wow thank you mr. fraser for replying!

no.2 i can deal with...... no.1 its gonna be a little hard as I will look silly and then they won't take me seriously. hahaha

no.3 can be difficult as coordination for them will be a bit tough. sing n play is not easy especially for them.

does talkin in loud volumes all the time dangerous on the vocal cords?

what about staying in CVT overdrive mode and, paying attention to vowel modifications and limits? i won't get hurt right?

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wow thank you mr. fraser for replying!

no.2 i can deal with...... no.1 its gonna be a little hard as I will look silly and then they won't take me seriously. hahaha

no.3 can be difficult as coordination for them will be a bit tough. sing n play is not easy especially for them.

does talkin in loud volumes all the time dangerous on the vocal cords?

what about staying in CVT overdrive mode and, paying attention to vowel modifications and limits? i won't get hurt right?

dark,

just a little advice...i really think i developed my (thank god) little nodule more by speaking improperly than by singing improperly.

try not to yell or even talk too loud too much during the day. i run a video store by myself, and i'm always having to yell into the other room...i recognized the problem and now i simply have a sign tagged to my computer at the counter that reminds me to speak less harshly.

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oh damn. thx so much for the warning videohere. lucky i just have to do it 1 - 2 hours per day and not the whole day. i think i will tone it down abit...

talk so lightly they have to get real close to you, then grab them by the collar and beat the crap out of them....lol!!!!

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talk so lightly they have to get real close to you, then grab them by the collar and beat the crap out of them....lol!!!!

you don't know how much i really WISH i can do that!!!! hahahaha!! some of them are IMPOSSIBLE no matter what vocal mode you use they still dont get it! hahahahha

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wow thank you mr. fraser for replying!

no.2 i can deal with...... no.1 its gonna be a little hard as I will look silly and then they won't take me seriously. hahaha

no.3 can be difficult as coordination for them will be a bit tough. sing n play is not easy especially for them.

does talkin in loud volumes all the time dangerous on the vocal cords?

what about staying in CVT overdrive mode and, paying attention to vowel modifications and limits? i won't get hurt right?

darkclaw3000: teaching a class of 30 should not require loud speech at all, if you set the rules for the class correctly, and insist on them.

Even if you do not have rules, students who are focussed on playing an instrument will not be talking while they are trying to play. If the pieces you have them play are progressions used in songs, then you can make it a 'singing along' a bonus for anyone that can play the piece well enough without singing. Believe me, many of students will find this motivating, and will even stand in front of the class to play a song through to earn the right to sing along... if you set the expectation.

Even when things get out of hand, you can always pull a class back into focus (and silence) by echo clapping, and motion pattern matching.

I hope this helps.

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echo clapping...? motion pattern matching???? are those teaching techniques? now that's one area i maybe interested to learn.....

your suggestions are gold mr. Fraser sir. i will definitely think about them and put in action.

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echo clapping...? motion pattern matching???? are those teaching techniques? now that's one area i maybe interested to learn.....

darkclaw3000: yes, they are music education tools designed to help teach rhythmic and other musical concepts, with the idea that doing is more engaging to a student than listening to a teacher talk. They are staples of classroom musical education, and taught at the university level, and sometimes in secondary schools.

Echo clapping is very simple in concept. You clap a rhythm, they clap it back to you. To start, have everybody stand, go slow, and use only 4-beat measures. Pick a simple rhythm, like eighth eighth, quarter, eighth eighth, quarter. Instruct the students to clap it back what you clap, with a sentence like... 'Clap this back to me'. Then, clap it at a comfortable, not too fast or slow pace... and nod, looking expectantly at them to echo it. Some of the kids, the ones with strong musical talent, will do it the very first try. Repeat the pattern, without talking this time. More will get it. After a few repeats more, everybody will be doing it just fine. Then, the last time they are clapping it, say 'This is different', and clap 4 quarter notes. Half or more will get this the very first time. Repeat once, then go back to the original rhythm without saying anything. They will be surprised that you changed without warning them, and there will be mistakes and giggling... but most will follow you... and they will be hooked. From that place forward, you can vary the rhythms at your discretion, without talking at all.

This is an excellent way to start a class, as it opens the ears and eyes of the students to musical and physical awareness via sound and sight. You can get leverage by picking rhythms that occur in the strum patterns needed for the music you are teaching in the uke lessons.

An extension of the echo clapping is called 'patchen', which requires even less talking. To start, say to the students... 'When you have figured out what I am doing, join me', then pat your thighs twice and clap twice, and repeat. In just a few repeats, everybody will have figured out what you are doing, and will be doing it with you. Then, say the word 'Change' on the downbeat of the next pattern, and go to a pat-clap-pat-clap alternation. They will pick it up immediately. To keep things interesting, get obviously softer with both the pat and the claps, and repeat it until they are all doing it softly. Then, get progressively louder. Change the pattern to a 12/8 rhythm, and when all are doing it, do the decres/crescendo pattern with it. No talking is required. When they can do dynamics, then change the tempos.

Have them sit down, and ask them about all the things they heard when doing the exercises. There are no wrong answers, because the question is about their perceptions. The astute among them will be the first to comment on dynamic and tempo changes. Ask them what songs came to mind while you were doing those things. No wrong answers are possible, since what they are describing is the response of their musical imagination to the experience.

Oh, and by the way... these exercises help to build tempo steadiness in kids that tend to rush.

I hope this helps,

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that reply definitely helps me tremendously!!!!

i will put it in action the next class i'm in.

THANK YOU SO MUCH!

i gave you a rep point, if only i can spam the rap points i will.

but still no matter how many points i give, it doesnt match the gratefulness im having right now for your excellent reply.

this gave me so much ideas!

thank you again!!!!!

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When I went to school (our chalkboard was drawings on the cave wall,) they had a unique voice-saving device for teachers called a paddle. Use it on students, as necessary. I realize that you are not allowed to discipline children these days.

I taught electrical work for a while in a program funded by the US Dept of Labor but administered by a private contractor, for whom I worked. They got paid per student, per day on campus, with a 2 year maximum enrollment. So, most times I turned in a negative report on a student, nothing happened. A child without guidelines doesn't know when to stop and "time-outs" are just time to plan the next caper. But I digress.

Heinlein said it best, children, especially males, should be raised in a whiskey barrel and fed through the taphole. At the age of 18, you have to decide whether to let them out or drive in the tap.

Thankyouverymuch. I'm here all week.

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Then, again, I say discipline starts in the home but I would get in trouble at school, as well. Sometimes, for fighting, though it was usually for some perceived insult against my family. If you said something about my mother, that was your last mistake.

So, maybe corporal punishment doesn't always work. Maybe, the little ones are just bad seed. :lol:

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