Student: Are there any other band teachers in your band?
Me: Well...not in the main band I've been gone with. But in another band I'm in. . .
Student: Does that band know you're cheating on them with another band???
Student: Do you have a girlfriend yet?
Student: Are you even trying?!
Me: If you turn a faucet on, then flick your finger through the water, you're breaking the water stream but the water is constant coming out of the faucet. When you're doing legato tonguing, your tongue should be breaking the air stream but the air has to be steady.
Student: That sounds like science class today.
Me: Oh? Why so?
Student: We learned about water having arms.
Me: ...I'm going to need to talk to your science teacher...
It made more sense after she explained they were talking about water molecules linking to create surface tension.
Student: So, I experimented with some different techniques for playing trumpet, but it turns out the one you told me to do works the best.
So you're trying to say your teacher actually knows what he's talking about? Imagine that!
*students start shoving each other*
Student 1 (to Student 2): You wanna fight? Huh??
Me: Guys! Cut it out!
*students keep shoving*
Student 2: Let's fight!
*students break out into an intense Rock, Paper, Scissors match*
Sometimes students are the best.
Student (who "ordered" bombs from me): Mr. Baumgartner, what's the expiration date on the bombs?
Student: That's a...D?
Me: Ok. How do you know that?
Student: Because I'm super-smart and I don't need anyone to teach me anything.
Me: Oh, well then you should be the teacher. Teach me something.
Student: Ok. Um...go get me Chipotle!
Me: ...what is that teaching me?
Student: So once you have a family you'll know how to provide for them when they want Chipotle.
Me: I already know how to buy Chipotle.
Student: Well...then get me Chick-Fil-A.
*student plays in wrong key*
Me: If you had a girlfriend and you just ignored her, that wouldn't be good, right?
Me: Key signatures are like girlfriends – you need to pay attention to them.
*later, after more notes outside the key signature*
Me: So...remember what we talked about earlier?
Student: Having sharps is basically like having a girlfriend?
At least he remembered part of it.
A student came out of band in the middle of a rehearsal last week crying, because other students were being jerks and laughing at her wrong notes (she's a generally solid player, for being a beginner). Fast-forward a few days:
Me: How are you doing today?
Student: Better. But I still want to quit band, because I can't play this *holds up her instrument*.
Me: Yes, you can! You don't always play all the notes right, but no one else does either – especially as beginners. You're doing fine!
Student: No, I'm not.
Student: ...fine, I guess I AM ok at it. So I won't quit yet.
Sometimes being a teacher means you need to regress to acting like an immature middle school kid to get your students to see reason.
I was leading low brass sectionals at a local high school. The room we were in was cold.
Me: It's cold in here.
Student: That's because we just walked in with our hearts.
I was amused that one of my 6th-graders knew another of my students was out of town because of Snapchat, so I started talking about what technology was like when I was her age. While I was explaining dial-up internet to her, she looked at me, obviously confused:
Student: So wait…you had to call the internet?
Basically. Technology advancements are great.
I have been teaching music across the Twin Cities since 2011. Along with seeing students grow as musicians and people, one of the joys of teaching is the ridiculous things my students say.