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Marching band credit

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Replies to: Marching band credit

  • eastcoascrazyeastcoascrazy Registered User Posts: 2,444 Senior Member
    Oh, Maxwell, you and your D are in such a tough place right now. It would be nice to have a crystal ball to help. Band is just one of those subjects that year after year people struggle with in the quest to achieve the perfect transcript and the perfect set of EC's and the perfect life, all to gain that perfect admission to the perfect school.

    Having weathered the admissions process with two, and with a third beginning high school this year, I would plead with you to relax a bit about band. If she loves her instrument, no, even if she just really likes her instrument, the benefits of band far outweigh the fact that its probably not a weighted class.

    Those thoughts of: "Oh lord, she could pile on one more AP in its place, and if she doesn't she might end up barely in the top 5% instead of valedictorian, and her chances at admittance to YYYY University are doomed, dooomed," will make you and her crazy.

    With my own kids, and in watching the admissions process play out with their friends, band was a life enriching experience. It gave leadership and community service opportunities. It gave opportunities to shine, and to make different friends. It gave really wonderful things to write about on those college apps. It gave the opportunity to practice time management skills.

    Band/orchestra/music gave much more than one more AP class ever could have.

    AND.... our own band director recently re-wrote the curriculum a bit so that the kids in the highest level band could opt to take it as an honors/GT level course by completing some higher level, individualized, additional year-long projects. If you're really concerned about losing the weighted class thing, that's something to bring up with the powers that be.
  • nursekaynursekay Registered User Posts: 259 Junior Member
    In my experience many ad coms do appreciate the time, energy and commitment it takes to stick with Marching Band. S1 had a strong, but not staggering academic record. His ECs were very thin with the exception of 6 years in Marching Band, the last as section leader. He was accepted into a tippy-top LAC. Not as a music major, no interest there, but as a Math/Physics major.
  • HuntHunt Registered User Posts: 26,917 Senior Member
    We also march "real" French horns. Hunt, you're probably thinking of the mellophone. Mellophonium was a C.G. Conn animal that looked like a French horn with the bell bent to be in a line with the leadpipe and mouthpiece. It retained the circular wrap of the French horn. Stan Kenton's big band had a section of these in the early sixties.
    You're right--I just remembered that they were mellow something.
  • herandhisMomherandhisMom Registered User Posts: 589 Member
    the benefits of band far outweigh the fact that its probably not a weighted class

    Can't agree more. I was like you, Maxwell. In fact I'm still like you and your daughter at times. But mostly, I decided, relax, enjoy! And there are so many good things about band. Yes they're going to sacrifice a lot too. but that's part of the beauty and value.
  • sydsimsydsim Registered User Posts: 311 Member
    Eastcoastcrazy, I didn't get that from Maxwell's post. What i heard was that even though the daughter loves band, there are so many other classes that she would love to take, but she doesn't have enough room for them. Being allowed to replace PE credit with band would free up another space for a class that she also has a passion for (and that would be great for colleges too). She may want to be a writer, so taking a journalism class would be great for her personally and for college apps.

    I have heard of families that try to fill every space with more APs to increase ranking/GPA, but there are those that also want to be able to take so many of the fantastic classes that are offered at the HS, because they love the class and if it's beneficial in the college app process, why not?
  • eastcoascrazyeastcoascrazy Registered User Posts: 2,444 Senior Member
    sydsim, you're probably right. I was looking mostly at the sentences about her need to focus academically, and her interest in several ivys. I may have read too much into those sentences.
  • MaxwellequationsMaxwellequations Registered User Posts: 739 Member
    Thank you all for sharing your opinions and experiences.
    The dilemma we are facing here is, if she takes five academic courses each year, (math, language, science, social studies, plus French), then there are two open spots. Band takes one. Then there is only one. There is basically no choice left but to fill that spot with required courses – PE one year, art one year, TechEd one year, health and financial literacy each half year. She is not having any chance to do anything else.

    I've had the impression that every serious student takes the four academic courses every year. Am I wrong? For example, is it a good idea to skip, say, one year of science in junior year, to do PhEd?

    For now, we decided in sophomore year, she will skip band for a year to do PhEd. It’s a very sad decision but there is no way around it.
  • MaxwellequationsMaxwellequations Registered User Posts: 739 Member
    In fact, it's even worse - since in freshman year she is not taking any of those required courses (she is doing double math) so she has to do PhEd in a summer. She has to give up her favorite summer program so she can stay home to do PhEd. :(
  • eastcoascrazyeastcoascrazy Registered User Posts: 2,444 Senior Member
    Maxwell, I think many of our kids face the same dilemma in high school. My two who are now in college took English, math, a science, a foreign language, and social studies every year for 4 years. One also took band all 4 years. That left one class period each year for "fun", except they also had to take a year of PE/health, and a year of a tech ed. class. They also needed one year of a fine art. Band fulfilled that. There wasn't a lot of room for extras or fun classes. we've always just assumed that was the way nit was for kids in a college prep track, especially for kids aiming for top colleges that require, or strongly suggest, 4 years each of math, English, social studies, science, and 2-4 years of language. It's a struggle to find a way to do it all.
  • thumper1thumper1 Registered User Posts: 71,809 Senior Member
    My very serious student finished Spanish 4 in 10th grade...which opened up a slot. She took four years of math, science, English, history/social studies. Four of band...and that was a deal breaker for her.

    9th
    Algebra 1
    English
    history (can't remember which one)
    Spanish 3
    Band
    PE/Health
    Science

    10th
    English
    Geometry
    American History
    Biology
    Spanish 4
    Band
    PE/Health

    11th
    English
    Algebra 2
    World History
    Chemistry
    Band
    Health/PE

    12th
    English
    AP Government
    Precalc
    Anatomy/Physiology
    Culinary Arts
    PE/Health
    Band

    Somehow with this less than stellar schedule, she got accepted to the college of her choice and got a bachelors degree in Bioengineering AND a second degree in Biology...in four years. AND she played in the college orchestra and studied her instruments (two of them) for all four years of college too.
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