Support group for parents of children taking music exams!

(1000 Posts)
Wafflenose Mon 14-Nov-11 22:03:28

Hello, I'm feeling excited, nervous and wobbly because my daughter is taking her first music exam in three weeks. I'm a music teacher and am very used to getting children through the exams, keeping the parents informed, helping to focus practice, etc, but this is my first experience with my own child doing an exam and for some reason it's more scary than putting other people's children in! I think she will be OK (and the other thirteen I have entered this term) but I'm not!! Any tips for the 'other side' (parents rather than music teachers) for how to keep us both calm on the day would be gratefully received! Does it get easier as they become more experienced? Am thinking not...

She is taking part in the local music festival tomorrow, to gain performance experience. She's wildly excited, and I've got the jitters!!

marmitecat Sat 07-Dec-13 22:28:24

Ds came out of his g1 recorder quite wobbly and told me quietly he thought he might have failed. He got his results today. 137. smile I think I may not trust his judgement on exam performance in future.

Wafflenose Sun 08-Dec-13 09:22:12

Well done to all - so many great marks!!

DD got 130 after crying over the sight reading, scales, and aural, and making two mistakes in one of her pieces. In fact, the breakdown of marks is very even - she lost around 3 in each section. Definitely could have been a bit better, but I never expected a distinction if she messed up. She's delighted.

Metebelis3 Sun 08-Dec-13 17:35:46

Well done to everyone. Some really good marks. smile DD1 got full marks for two of her pieces which at grade 8 is...not what she'd even allowed herself to hope for. She lost one mark on each of the other sections. Having to wait the extra term because of her dislocated finger, ligament damage and GCSEs was obviously a blessing in disguise in terms of this exam anyway (not in other ways). Although she did change one of her pieces, as a result of trying a different one over the summer and falling in love with it. So who knows what might have happened with the original piece. Not much time to be relieved though, sadly - We're a bit concerned about Tuesday's piano exam. And still waiting for Dd2s singing (and Ballet) results!

Looking forward there are a couple of competitions next term, some festivals and grade 8 singing for Dd1 (I've put my foot down about grade 8 flute on cost grounds - that can wait till the summer) (and some auditions too) and for DD2, no exams next term unless she does grade 4 flute, but more festivals (singing and dancing). I'd rather she saved the flute exam till the summer though, then she can do it the same day as Dd1 with same accompanist etc. makes it easier logistically for me. And the dancing does take precedence next term. Pus she's in a show, so.... Se has to learn she just can't do everything. smile

Wafflenose Sun 08-Dec-13 18:33:50

Wow! Incredible result at Grade 8!

My two (aged 8 and 5) are probably going to be doing Grade 5 and Initial on the same instrument, and the same day in the summer term! It does make things easier.

DottyDot Sun 08-Dec-13 19:40:41

I haven't got my result yet and am beginning to think I failed - although logically I don't think I was that bad.

I remember my piano teacher phoning me 6 million years ago to give me a grade 8 result - she was hopping mad with me so I thought I'd failed... turns out I'd got a distinction but failed my scales blush. She was furious that I'd done so well in everything else and if I'd have bothered to learn my scales I could have done even better - which was of no interest to me at all....! Ahem....

As a piano teacher now, I always ensure my pupils know their scales inside out and back to front grin

RaspberryLemonPavlova Mon 09-Dec-13 18:01:22

Wow, amazing results. Well done everyone.

How long are the ABRSM results taking at present? We are still waiting!

Lots of concerts/carol playing in supermarkets and bandstands though, very busy but great fun!

DottyDot Mon 09-Dec-13 20:34:58

I got my ABRSM results this afternoon - 12 days after the exam. Got a distinction! grin

Wafflenose Mon 09-Dec-13 21:45:32

Hooray, Dotty! Such a lot of distinctions this term!

DD's result took 10 days, I think.

zooweemumma Tue 10-Dec-13 12:43:16

dd2 got a Merit in her grade 2 violin which we are delighted with. Just trying to find something small to buy her as a gift (we did Fiddle time Xmas last year)

singinggirl Thu 12-Dec-13 11:34:31

DS1 got the merit he had predicted for Grade 5 piano! Very pleased with him, his aural marks were poor, but he is still struggling there with a changing voice. Now full steam ahead for grade 5 theory next term and grade 5 violin in the summer. All my students passed safely, just waiting for DS2's clarinet result now.

schilke Thu 12-Dec-13 21:33:07

DD2 (7) has her first exam next Tuesday - grade 1 trumpet. She is remarkably cool about it all. She has a tendency to be a bit odd and I fear this might happen in the exam! She can suddenly act as if she doesn't understand a word anyone is saying to her. Dh is accompanying her and she's even playing one of his pieces in the exam!
It's a totally different experience to ds2. He is a nervous wreck beforehand and I wonder if it's worth it.

singinggirl Wed 18-Dec-13 13:41:11

And DS2 passed his grade 1 clarinet, so a full house this term. Phew!

Wafflenose Wed 18-Dec-13 15:47:39

Well done to all!

My pupils got... 3 merits, 2 passes, 1 fail (as expected... long story), and I also had a withdrawal - a child who had been very ill, and will now take the exam next term. I was quite down about the fail, but it turns out that it has been a wake-up call for the pupil, who is about to do GCSEs and apparently needs to try harder all round.

RaspberryLemonPavlova Wed 18-Dec-13 19:10:57

DS2 passed his Grade 5 piano with a merit (124) and is very pleased. The result took 9 days which I think is a record for us from ABRSM!

Well done to others DC and Wafflenose's pupils. Hopefully that will be a good lesson for your fail!

Wafflenose Thu 19-Dec-13 10:22:31

Well done to your DS. How old are they all now? They seem to have done loads of Grade 5s between them!

DD2 (who is 5) did her Copper Music Medal on recorder yesterday. A 10 year old pupil did her Bronze today, which was a stressful experience. DD1 is doing her Gold on Treble in a few weeks, because she is jealous that her friends have the special badges to wear on their school jumpers, and she doesn't!! (I teach most of her friends!) The slight snag has been finding a school pupil good enough to play one of the other lines in DD1's ensemble piece, but I have finally sorted that out!

RaspberryLemonPavlova Fri 20-Dec-13 01:14:20

We do seem to have got stuck at Grade 5!

Ds1 is 15, and has racked up 4 Grade 5s. He started on trumpet got to Grade 5 and then switched to trombone (he couldn't reach the high notes on trumpet and the large mouthpiece suited him better.) He did Grade 5 on that, then began doubling on tuba and decided to do Grade 5 on that rather than Grade 6 on his trombone. Possibly not what I would have preferred him to do. However he will be jumping to Grade 8 next year for trombone. He did piano earlier this year but is just learning for fun now

DD (13) did Grade 5 jazz sax nearly 2 years ago and sort of stuck for a bit. She is doing Grade 6 in March though. She's just stopped cello after 2 years and started piano which she likes much more.

DS2 turned 11 just before his Grade 5 piano exam and is heading towards Grade 5 trombone, possibly also in March. He is also a chorister.

They have fun, playing in lots of school ensembles and Music Service groups, which I think is the main thing.

Your 2 DDs seem very talented and are whizzing along.

Wafflenose Fri 20-Dec-13 09:47:36

I thought they had done a lot of Grade 5s! They are all doing so well, and seem to love it.

I have DD1, who just turned 8. She is the one I started this thread for, and has just done Grade 2 Flute, and is about to start Grade 5 Recorder. She did piano for a bit and was quite good at it, but prefers woodwind.

DD2 (5) started in April when she was still 4, even though she was a bit small really. She picked up note reading immediately, but is still working on breath control on the low notes. She is probably going to do Initial Grade on Recorder in the summer, and wants to learn the trumpet and guitar when she is big enough.

pugsandseals Fri 20-Dec-13 10:09:52

Grade 4 oboe back on 3rd Dec - should we have heard yet? DD only managed 3/5 scales & is desperate to know how she did!

Wafflenose Fri 20-Dec-13 10:29:24

Was it with AB, pugs?

I do think they try their very best to get them out before Christmas. Maybe you can contact the teacher to see if he/ she has heard?

RaspberryLemonPavlova Fri 20-Dec-13 14:26:06

pugs DS did his AB exam on 2nd December and teacher had online result on 11th. Definitely worth checking up on.

Wafflenose trumpet would be a dit different four your household? Lovely though. I miss DS playing it.

notanotherinstrument Fri 20-Dec-13 15:24:31

DD has had a lovely early Christmas present - distinction in her grade 8 recorder. So pleased as she has worked very hard.

Wafflenose Fri 20-Dec-13 16:10:25

Oh well done to her, that is brilliant!

Yesl Trumpet will be very different, and I won't be able to help her, as I really don't have a clue.

Metebelis3 Fri 20-Dec-13 17:33:19

notanother Well done to her! We should form an exclusive club. grin Is she going on to do diploma? I was delighted when I had a look at the syllabus to see that I had loads of the pieces (and in fact DD1 has already played a couple of them in festivals). It's a big committment though.

notanotherinstrument Fri 20-Dec-13 17:58:44

Liking the idea of exclusive 'parents of gr8 dist. recorders club'!! Considering she emerged from the exam saying the study was awful, the scales were rubbish and the sight-reading was 'the worst ever' I didn't think it was too bad a result really. DD tells me the best thing about passing is that she won't have to play scales in a recorder exam again and she says yes she is going to do a diploma soon. I managed a really great buy on ebay back in the summer - someone's entire collection of recorder music for around £15 - a professional player who had decided after finishing college to focus on flute not recorder - so we have a huge amount of stuff which is on syllabus. No rush though - she is only very little and gr8 on another instrument next term, or so she tells me.

pugsandseals Sat 21-Dec-13 21:31:37

Results are in!
Pieces 27, 26 &26 but Scales 12 & only 13 for aural.
Result of her life though was 19 for the sight reading - stunning!
So Grade 4 Merit done & dusted, better get working on the theory at this rate - she only took up the Oboe 2 years ago!

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