Oops, I didn't mean to make it sound like I was dissing professional musicians -- just that I've heard that if you're really gifted in this area, it's sometimes hard to adjust your standards to children.
In the church choir that dd1 was a part of for a few months last year, I feel the leader tried to be nice to me but we just really weren't "her kind of people." Dd1 has had no formal voice training or formal musical experience, which I hadn't realized was so unusual for a 9yo. We also unschool and she's very active.
Well, the leader really tried to be nice but after the first or second practice, she took me aside and told me that she was wanting to help dd but it was really hard, because they'd all been a group for a long time, and were actually working on a song they'd sung the previous year. So they were all familiar with it and she said it was just really hard having this new child coming in who not only wasn't familiar with that song, but was also having a hard time even singing on-key.
I was about to just take dd out but then she added that she really wanted to work with dd but was just trying to help me understand how stressful it was for her. She didn't say any of this in front of dd or the other children. When I talked with dd later (not repeating all of this of course), she was really gun-ho for wanting to stay in choir, though she didn't like it that they had to stand for so long and didn't really appreciate the 100% classical music. So she stayed in a little longer, and actually went to the end of year party last May, and then we fell out of going to that church; dd1 just found parts of it really boring and it seemed there wasn't enough fun stuff to make up for the boring parts.
I liked alot of things about that church, but it just seemed that we didn't 100% fit there. I think we were probably the lowest income family there, and maybe most of the other children really had had formal voice training from an early age. They also seemed to be accustomed to sitting still more and listening to Bible readings and so on. Dd really likes the much more active and open style of the UU children's program. In other churches, they seem to discontinue the long free-play sessions once the children are past pre-school age, so it's nice to finally be part of a congregation where they understand that older kids still do most of their learning through playing, too.
Edited by mammal_mama - 12/27/10 at 6:11pm