Life can get pretty crazy as a music major. It’s even crazier when you add in Honors, golf season, and student orgs. For my first six semesters I have started every day with music theory. It’s officially called comprehensive musicianship and it also includes a sight-singing lab once a week and a 15-minute piano lab lesson because I didn’t start learning piano until college. I also
go to one large ensemble rehearsal a day which is either wind ensemble or concert band in
addition to flute choir on Monday nights and handbell choir on Tuesday nights. On top of that, I have a one-hour private flute lesson once a week for my applied musicianship requirement.
Usually, I fit in two methods classes a semester. This could be instrumental or general music in the schools and an instrumental methods class - either woodwinds, brass, percussion, or strings. The instrumental methods classes are usually taught by adjunct professors so they are taught once a week in a two-hour class late at night. Every couple of weeks I am learning to play a new instrument just well enough that I would be able to teach a beginner. The rest of my classes in a week are an Honors class and a core class if I have room for one.
I try to do homework in between classes as much as I can. I make written work and reading my first priority to make sure I am prepared for class everyday. I also try to get all of that stuff done so I have time to practice. My primary instrument is flute so that is my number one priority during every practice session. I also have to practice piano and whatever instrument I am currently learning in instrumental methods. Balancing this among weekly Trip Leader trainings, small group TRIPS meetings, and NAfME meetings can get pretty hectic. I also have to make it out to the golf course for an hour or two everyday to get in some golf practice. Even though golf season is pretty short, I have to spend a lot of what little free time I have at the golf course and every weekend away from campus at a different tournament. It provides an added challenge at the beginning of every school year as I try to get into a new routine.
While this is a snapshot of what my day to day schedule has been for the last three years, it is pretty different this semester as I finish up a few more classes before student teaching. I still am in wind ensemble, concert band, flute choir, bell choir, and flute lessons, but unlike other semesters I’m not taking a full 18 credit course load and am actually able to take classes for fun. This has made room for me to finish up all of my 70 classroom observation hours I still needed before student teaching as well as complete 20 hours of service for a service learning course, so I spend most of my free time off campus. My time on campus is spent in class, and balancing
TRIPS meetings, Trip Leader trainings, Omicron Delta Kappa, NAfME, Phi Kappa Phi, golf practice, and a weekly team workout.
Despite this crazy schedule, I know it is preparing me for my career as a music teacher, balancing the school day with after school music activities while continuing to work on my performance skills and still having a life outside of music.