Interview with Ms. Kendra Whindleton [Eden Kim]



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00:00:00 - Introduction

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Partial Transcript: K: Okay, thank you so much for meeting with me today. Um first, to start, could you tell me a bit about your musical background and what you do now at John B. Cary School?
W: Okay. Um, I started playing the piano when I was five. Um, I also played the saxophone, um growing up I started in fourth grade and then I continued throughout um, throughout high school, and then, I ended up, and I was in choir as well, um chorus or whatever you wanna call it, um, in um middle and high school as well. Then I decided to go to college and I was through with- and I played the piano, so I was through with music, I told my mom and dad I’m not gonna do anything with music ever again, I wanted to be a kindergarten teacher and that was it, and so I always played with choirs and for youth choirs and for different things like that, um, in church as well, and so, by the time I got to Virginia Union, um… my, the second semester of my sophomore year, I changed to music, and so I went to school to be a band director, but then after I graduated um college they had an opening for a general music teacher so I stayed in general music from ’97 until 2015, and um, and then I stepped out for awhile, and now I’m back, as a band director.
K: Okay, um, so how has your experience been here, teaching at Cary school?
W: Um, well this is my first year, and so I have four schools, and, um, it’s challenging going to four different schools, um I have to admit that, um, but the kids are great, it’s also challenging when you have to, um teach children how to hold their instruments and everything like that. Um, I think when I initially wanted to be a band director, I think that because I was on the high school level, I thought that kids would just come in, already knowing how to hold their instruments and just make great music, and so um I had to reel myself back in, um, but it’s, it’s been a great experience teaching music at all four schools.
K: Yeah, that’s wonderful can you talk a bit about your other schools like are they the same age, is it all elementary, or…?
W: Mhmm, fourth and fifth grade [Announcements come on] Hahaha. So, they’re all fourth and fifth grade. Some schools have more fifth graders than others, um, but basically they’re all beginners, yeah.
K: You know, that’s really awesome, cause I started playing, like violin in fourth grade, so I support that. Um, okay so about how many students out of the entire student population at Cary are involved in the music program?
W: Uh, I have less than twenty, and so it varies, because some students, um, their parents have told me they’re still getting their instruments, so right now it’s less than twenty, but some come, some don’t come, some parents are still telling me they’re gonna get their instruments, so I really haven’t, like, put a direct number on it because I don’t wanna think about it cause I don’t wanna get discouraged or anything like that, if, um, if I think about oh they had this many last year, and then, I just have them all come, um, when they come on the day that they come, and so but I know that right now it’s less than twenty.
K: Okay, um, and I also know that the Cary student population has grown over the past few years, have you seen the music program grow as well, um, not just like, amount of students, just like, amount of resources and stuff like that, or…
W: Well that, just being my, third, what is this November, my third month, I don’t really know, yeah, because I’ve only been here those three, what, not even three whole months yet.
K: Okay, gotcha. Um, so what do students do in these music, is it classes, or just the program, do they play?
W: Um, you’re talking about just in my class? [Yeah] So, in my class, um, the former band director had a rotating schedule, so that they won’t miss the same resource, so um, all of them, some of them don’t wanna miss art, some of them don’t wanna miss P.E., some don’t wanna miss music, some don’t wanna miss Spanish, so, uh, or library, so because of that I see, uh, so today, it was just percussion. Tomorrow, it will be, um, flutes, clarinets, saxophones, and so if they came to me on Thursday, then next week they’ll come on Friday. And so it rotates like that, so that’s difficult and challenging as well because when I was um, in elementary school you just went on the day that we needed to go, but I don’t, it wasn’t during like, resource or anything like that, ours was a different time, a different day, um, but with them, um, actually all of my schools are on a rotating schedule except one, and they have theirs on a different time, um but basically I see, I split them up, and they all come on a different day.
K: Okay [Yeah] I remember those days of library, art, music, all that.
W: And they don’t wanna miss some of those classes.
K: Yeah. Well I don’t miss gym, that’s one thing I don’t miss, but anyway! Um [I understand] Okay, so, I know from your email that you taught music in Richmond Public Schools from 1997 to 2015 and also spent 3 years teaching in the District of Columbia. Um, how has your experience at these two places compared with each other?
W: Um, well actually, um, Richmond and DC weren’t very, they weren’t very much different, um, except with DC I taught, um three year olds, they started at three, yeah, pre-k, head start, started at three, so I had three year olds, and my elementary school went all the way up to sixth grade. So that was the difference with them, so I had to see all of them whereas, when I taught music here, most of the time I didn’t, most of the years I didn’t see pre-k or head start, um, some years I did, so that was the difference, um I had to see three year olds up there, three year old four five and on up. Um, so that was the difference but basically there really wasn’t a big difference, resources is definitely something that um, that we really need to work on, um… and let’s see… I think, I think that’s about it.
K: Yeah, wow three year olds, that’s so young! Um, so then, how has your experience teaching at Richmond Public Schools changed over the years, so, from 1997 to today?
W: Um, well because I’m in a different, um, I’m in a totally different world now, being in band, um, it’s very different, I’m glad to have been able to step out of the classroom because it can be challenging having, um, other people’s classes come to you. So, um, so hahaha, so um it’s changed over the years because we’ve gone through different music supervisors, and, everything like that, it’s changed some, but basically it’s about the same, we um everybody wants more resources, and more time, and, everything like that.
K: Yeah, definitely. I feel that too, as a college student.

Segment Synopsis: Ms. Kendra Whindleton introduces herself and talks about her experience teaching at Richmond Public Schools, as well as her past teaching experiences and the general music program.

Keywords: class; music; teach

Subjects: music; school

GPS: John B. Cary Elementary School
Map Coordinates: 37.548, -77.482
00:07:19 - Student Demographics

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Partial Transcript: Um, okay, so, I also found that, like, I found the different demographics about the overall student population for John B. Cary, um but how would you describe like the demographics of the students that you currently teach, just in terms of like, either race or gender, or, just anything like that.
W: Um, well I… well of course it’s predominantly African American, the band is, and um, I don’t have as many girls as I have boys, I have more boys than girls [Okay], yeah.
K: Um, and, does this like compare with either your earlier years of teaching like at different schools at Richmond Public Schools, or even like, the District of Columbia, is it about the same like, demographics of students?
W: Um, about the same um, African American, now I’m at Munford as well and Munford [Are you really?] Yeah [Okay] Munford is more Caucasian, um, predominantly, and then I’m at Holton, and, that’s more predominantly, I’m looking at the band, predominantly African American as well… and then I’m at, um Obama as well [Wow, you’re all over Richmond, that’s awesome] And I don’t have to necessarily go all the way to the south side so that’s a good thing I’m still confined over here.
K: Okay. Um, so, that’s actually kind of interesting that, you know, you teach at John B. Cary, mostly African American, and then your other one, which is African American, but then, like Munford is like, predominantly white, um, do you see like any difference, not just like the students but maybe your teaching style or like, how they learn, is there any difference that you can see, from that?
W: Yeah… there is a difference, um, well let me say this: also at Holton and here, at John B. Cary, there’s music, and um P.E. going on at the same time. At Holton, there’s cafeteria and P.E. going on at the same time that I’m trying to teach. So, that poses… a problem. You know, um, it’s not as much of a problem, it’s rough. You know it’s rough for the kids because it’s difficult for them to hear themselves, it’s difficult for them to hear me, um, so that can pose a problem. Now Munford, um so that, I don’t know how it would be if I didn’t have all of that going on, may be good for my teaching style, may, would be different if I didn’t have to, to talk louder and, do everything over top of the noise to keep their attention. Um, at Munford, we’re in a confined space but I can’t see everybody cause I can only fit like, nine chairs in there, and which, that’s, that’s pretty good, um, and they’re, they’re calm, and, well no, [Hahaha] my saxophones, and clarinets, they’re all boys, and it’s quite a few of them, about ten, ten of them, um between the clarinets and the saxophones, or eight, I’m trying to look at them and remember. Um, so with them I have to be a little more firmer, and, like put my foot down because they like to play when I’m talking and everything like that. Um, at Obama my students are wonderful, Holton my students are wonderful too it’s just, they can’t hear me, because there’s so much going on so, you know when everything’s going on then your brain has a tendency to gravitate towards all of that stimulation. Um, but no my teaching style is, basically pretty much the same overall and then, by the time I get here, it’s the end of the day they’re tired, and I’m tired too, and, once again we have all of this, so I mean I do have to be a little different but we have so much going on, um that we have to compete against. So did I answer your question I hope I did?
K: Yes, you did! Um, and then you mentioned that at Munford, like you can’t, you can only fit nine chairs, is your class size smaller there?
W: No, no no no, they are, I’m there everyday, they’re split, like I said that happened before I got there, um, so, like Mondays it’s maybe flutes, and I have, oh how many do I have… five, so all of them come, um and then maybe the next day trumpets, and then the next day is trombones, and then the next day is clarinets and saxophones and then the last day would be percussion, and I have ooh! quite a few of them. Woah! Oh my goodness so, we’re split up there and, everyday, you know the next week it’s gonna rotate it’s just gonna keep rotating. Um, so I like splitting them up and having them split up because I can’t imagine, trying to teach all of them, in one space, and begin, and the fourth graders being beginners, that I just, uhh, that, would’ve been rough.
K: Yeah, um, and then I oh yeah. So, do you go to all four schools every day?
W: No, three. [Okay.] But not everyday, I go to, um, what’s today Thursday, so Tuesday, and Thursday I go to… three. Monday and Wednesday I go to two. And Friday, yeah Friday I go to two as well.
K: Okay. Well that’s good that it’s somewhat of a rotation cause I was like, I cannot imagine going that everyday
W: Because I’m seeing five classes a day [yeah] basically
K: Oh my gosh, that is… that’s still a lot of traveling, though like back and forth, seeing different groups, gotta remember like, okay where were these kids what were we working on here
W: Yesss. Yes, yes, yes. [Hahaha]
K: How do you juggle that all, oh my
W: Yeah, it’s quite rough, and then, um especially, well at Holton and Munford, um, more so there than here because I have, I don’t have very many fifth graders that came back at all, they were on the karate belt type of thing, where, um, they play, they’ll practice and then come and play, so there was a list of songs, so to get your yellow belt, you have to play this page, to get your orange belt you have to play, so everybody’s on a different page [Oh my gosh] Yeah, yeah, yeah. So, think about that, and then I have to get them, have to have fourth graders play with the fifth graders for our, we have a parade, at Holton we have a parade in December, as well as we have a concert, a parade and a concert [Okay!]. And they’re all on different pages, fourth and fifth grade.
K: Right. And these are still fairly young musicians, so, you know they’re like, kind of all on the same page in they’re all beginning, but then they’re also like different, in terms of skill, so then-
W: Well fifth grade no they’re not on the same page, most of them aren’t, like one of the um, a flute player is on like page 17 or 18, and then some may be on 12, and then some are on, like, 10 I think. And then the saxophones, one is on, like, 7, he was just trying to get his yellow belt, that’s just the second one and this is his second year, and he’s just trying to get his yellow belt and I mean, so, everybody’s on a different page.
K: So, these aren’t private lessons [No] this is a whole group so then how do you teach a whole group which is on so many different levels, like?
W: I just have to stroke their ego and say I really need you and remember how you were in fourth grade, and so basically I, and because I have so many fourth graders, I um, we’re playing on the fourth grade level. But then I’ll allow them to play for me after the class is over so that they can continue moving and get their belt which is a piece of yarn, a colorful piece of yarn that they like to, you know so it lets everyone know what level they’re on, so, I mean yeah, it’s, it’s rough, [Wow] it’s very rough. But! It’s enjoyable I enjoy it but yeah, it’s a lot to walk into.
K: Yeah, okay, okay.

Segment Synopsis: Ms. Whindleton discusses the demographics of her students and how they differ between schools, as well as how this affects her teaching style.

Keywords: differences; student

Subjects: demographics; race

GPS: John B. Cary Elementary School
Map Coordinates: 37.548, -77.482
00:15:10 - Academics and Music

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Partial Transcript: Um, let’s see, have you seen any like academic, personal, social, any type of growth in your students that may be attributed to their involvement with music?
W: Um, well because like I said this is my first year, and um-
K: Or maybe like in your past schools too, you could draw from any of that.
W: Um, well when it comes to academics, um… and different things sometimes when I was a general music teacher I would do different things to assist them with their academics like make up a song or something that would help them memorize something, and so um, I, the teachers have oh yeah I’m gonna use that song and different things like that so, I’m quite sure that helped. Um, but when it comes to academics, I’m the type of person that knows that everybody is not gonna excel just in academics, and I know that some people will excel in music, and then some people will excel in academics, but that doesn’t mean, just because you excel in music, that you’re still not important, and that what you’re doing is still not great. Um so, I don’t try to um, make them feel bad if they don’t, you know so I really try to focus on okay let’s, let’s do the music and let’s become the greatest musicians that we can be and then I tell them my story that I get paid, I get paid to be a musician [Yeah, this is your living.] I get paid, yeah, I get paid and not only this, but outside of school, I get paid, I play for church, I play for- I have a funeral to play for Saturday, I play for weddings, um, you know whatever and so I let them know, you know just because you may not make all As and Bs in your academics doesn’t mean that you’re not gonna grow up and be someone great because you can be a great musician and fare very well [Yeah] Yeah, hahaha.
K: I just wanna say, I so appreciate that, cause I feel like, yeah like so much importance is placed on academics but, you can, like, and then if you’re so focused on that, when it’s, might just really not be your thing, you can be working on music but if everyone’s telling you no, like focus on the academics be a scholar, you know you’ll never grow to your potential. And also, there’s also like, can be a bit of a toxic environment, music too, where it gets super competitive, whatever, like what, what do you say to your students then cause, then, you know you see like a real talent, they also are having to go into the music field and then, that can be a lot too, can be stressful so…
W: Yeah, and see I didn’t experience that at Virginia Union, Virginia Union is very small, as compared to, at VCU, so I’m quite sure it’s even more, um, competitive because of you’re at VCU [Oh I’m at University of Richmond] Oh! I mean, so UofR so you’re, is your music department small? [Yeah it’s pretty small] So that’s good [I would not say that it’s competitive] Okay, and see I didn’t experience that so I would just tell people to keep, you know pushing themselves but to also realize that you have your own lane, and that’s what I’m realizing as a musician and as a um pianist that um, because I play for churches, I have my own lane that I stay in. So if I know that what I do, cannot, um, benefit this church, then I’m not gonna even try to go that route, because there’s gonna be someone, who’s going to want what I can offer them. And so I do let my students know that I mean hey, if that isn’t the route for you, then try another route, I let my daughter know because my daughter doesn’t do very well academically but she’s a dancer, so I pay for her, I mean she goes to the studio Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday, yes, that’s what I’m paying for, yes Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday, and she works there on Saturday, okay? And so, and she’s a singer this year, and I have not made her feel bad um, she’s played the guitar, the clarinet, um she sings, she does everything and academics just, it’s not her thing. And it’s okay, she’s gonna make it. She’s still going to be a great and successful person, although academics is a little difficult. As long as she knows how to add her money, add, subtract, and pay your bills, you’ll still make it. You can always pay somebody to do the business aspect if you really can’t do it. Haha, if you about to start your own business.
K: Yeah, [yup] um, I can definitely like agree with that like [uh huh] some of the calculus stuff, I’ve never used in real life. Music has helped me in so many ways and I’m sure it has for you too like you know, it really is like the one constant, like in your life, um, it’s always there for you amidst all the stress of academics or just life in general, um, and then you can always fall back on that. And, you’re always growing, like you’re never gonna perfect music like you’re never gonna reach that level and be like I got it! I’m the best musician, you know, you can always grow and find new things, and, I just love it.
W: And guess what, music is everyone’s constant. Music is everywhere, it’s all around. Someone is always making something that we’re gonna utilize, whether it’s in our personal lives, whether it’s on a TV, or wherever, you know, someone’s always gonna utilize our music. And even with me, I teach music but I write songs. I mean I write my little, I wrote our little winter program song that we’re going to do because I know where my fourth graders are. So I had to write it, and it’s okay. And they’re still gonna do it.
K: And, writing songs is hard, like you have to understand all that you know?

Segment Synopsis: Ms. Whindleton compares music and academics and points out the importance of music, especially for students who may not be academically skilled.

Keywords: music; musician; student

Subjects: academics; life; music

GPS: John B. Cary Elementary School
Map Coordinates: 37.548, -77.482
00:20:37 - A Child's Background and Involvement in Music

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Partial Transcript: Do you feel like there’s a connection between a child’s background and their involvement in music, um, either that’s whether it makes them involved or not, or affects like the level they’re involved in, um, you know and that can be like, child’s background as in like, if their family’s involved in music or is it just a really open thing, anyone can come, you know?
W: Um, I believe that anyone can benefit from music and music lessons, and everything like that I believe that and it just depends on where their level is, you just have to meet them where they are. So of course there are some people who um cognitively, um, may not be able to play an instrument or play a saxophone or something like that, but you just meet them where they are so they may only be able to hold the, the um, triangle and hit, and it may not even be on beat, but anyone can benefit from, from music. Um, and a lot of times people want to, um, that’s okay, a lot of times people, um, feel as though if a child’s parents are involved in music and everything like that then you know they have more of an advantage, or if their parents can pay for um, private lessons they have more of an advantage, and I mean you know, looking at it, it may, be, like that, but I still believe that children who just come to school and, and they may have general music, or they may have um, their parents have rented their instrument or even if the school has to loan them an instrument, everyone can benefit. They can benefit. And I don’t, I don’t think, um of course we look at it as a leg up if you can afford to pay for um, you know music lessons and everything like that but I still believe that even there are children who um can’t afford that and they’re still gonna be great musicians. And they’re still gonna benefit. Ahaha, and the world is going to win! Because they are gonna be a great musician, wherever they go.
K: Yes. And you mentioned, like, you know the different levels, if you can afford private lessons, or if you’re renting your instrument or if even the school has to like, loan it to you, um, how does that work? Like, do you find that like, there’s more of a need that the students have, in terms of like, instruments or materials, music books, and then how does the school like, provide that for them?
W: Um, well some schools have instruments, um these are… we need some more instruments. Some schools have instruments like Barack Obama doesn’t have any instruments [Really] And so I had quite and, the thing of it is, you know you send out the paperwork and children bring the paperwork back and so I had quite a few, like maybe 30 papers? But only 15, um, are actually renting their instruments or have bought um their instrument. And so that becomes an issue, um, because you know, the parents can’t afford it, or, um, they don’t want to, you know, put the mon- the extra money or something out, and they’re like, you know some parents are like well if you, you know are gonna play the instrument and they just may have bills. Um but I feel as though, um loaning the instrument has helped children, but Barack Obama is going to receive twenty five hundred dollars worth of instruments this Saturday. We got a donation from this um organization called Can’d Aid. And so they’re going to have this group come, it’s a touring band, and it’s SunSquabi, SunSquabi they’re gonna come, do a petting zoo and everything like that Saturday evening. And so just because we’re allowing SunSquabi to come they’re going to give us twenty five hundred dollars worth of instruments. And so um, she, the person who works there let me know yesterday, that they did a two day um, express delivery that the instruments are on their way, brand new instruments, um I ordered twelve, and so haha [Yay!] and so it’s so exciting um, because there are a lot of children like one little boy he really wants to play flute. And so every time I come to his classroom to get them he really wants to come to band, but he doesn’t have an instrument so his teacher’s like, “Do you have an instrument?” And he’s like no… And I don’t have anything to give him but he’s so excited. So I, that’s gonna be one of my students that I’m going to give an instrument to [Yes!] and allow him to, you know allow him to borrow an instrument from the school, so, I’m so excited about that.
K: I’m so happy to hear that too!
W: Yes, I’m so excited.
K: Um, and then you said something, that was interesting, um, so, alright I’ll just keep talking see if I remember… Um, so yeah like I remember from my music program at my school like, um you know I went to like, a predominantly white school that like, you know, so another fact that I found about Cary is that like 98% of students are eligible for free lunch. Like at my school, only 10%. And I was one of them. So I was certainly not one of the students who got private lessons or like could afford all the books and stuff. Oh yeah, so, like I received very little financial help, from like my music program but like I was able to like, get along just fine. Um but then like you mentioned that you’re getting like, the donation um, for your other school, but then like do you find that like the music program is pretty much only funded by like those smaller donations cause, if there’s not enough instruments for kids, like, and then they don’t have the money to pay for it like, how does, how does it get along then?
W: Yeah, it, it’s pretty rough trying to order instruments and everything like that [And books] Yeah [You need, you do need stuff] And our supervisor actually she got us some new books but of course you don’t wanna loan too many out because, you know what if, what am I gonna do next year, if you don’t bring them back? And um, and so yeah, it can, it’s very difficult when it comes to um, instruments and everything and like I said we have these (pointing to instruments in the room) but um, two of those, we can’t use, that needs to be fixed, um… they don’t have mouthpieces, um, oh that one is just old you know people have donated them so that one is old and I really need to discard it um, so you know um we rely on donations and everything like that but then sometimes, you still don’t have the money to get the instruments fixed. [Yeah.] So they come in, but some of them aren’t even coming in in working order, or they’re so old, that, they don’t even have the stuff that the music stores to even fix them, be cheaper just buy new instruments. So yeah that’s the issue.
K: Yeah, and I mean plus these are kids, as you said, you don’t wanna lend out too many books, might not get it back, or you know, stuff like that. Um…
W: And even with our like harps. They play the harps but they can’t, you know go home and practice and stuff like that, so yeah. So it can be pretty difficult to get them where you know they could go, if they had the resources. If we had the resources.
K: My next question was gonna be like, if the John B. Cary music program were given a large sum of money, what do you think, or yeah what do you think it should go towards, just dream for a minute, haha.
W: Yeah, I wanna start a elementary school marching band [That would be amazing] Yeah, so I wanna do that, and I am getting a marching snare and a marching bass drum for um, the other school
K: Which other school is that?
W: Um, Obama. [Okay.] Yeah, that was one of the instruments, two of the instruments that I ordered. Um so yeah we would get instruments, and we would have our little marching band, and, yeah. Everything would be exciting.
K: Yeah. I- I really do think music is so important. I did orchestra and marching band in my school years and yeah, it was, it, it also helps with like, making friends too [It does] yeah. So that helps like, the social growth, and which, which just helps all aspects of life.
W: Well, it does. I agree. I agree.

Segment Synopsis: Ms. Whindleton draws the connection between a child's background (family life) and the extent of their involvement in music, but ultimately concludes that every child deserves a chance to play music.

Keywords: instrument; resources

Subjects: background; money; music

GPS: John B. Cary Elementary School
Map Coordinates: 37.548, -77.482
00:28:32 - Personal Relationships with Students

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Partial Transcript: K: Um, okay, so, I just have, maybe like one or two questions left… Um, okay so what’s your opinion on getting to know your students outside of the classroom, like outside of their involvement with just music, and getting to know their personal life, interests, like family life, et cetera?
W: Um, well when I was a general music teacher I definitely wanted to know um, exactly where my students are coming from and everything like that but now, it’s a little more difficult because I like swoop in and swoop right back out like I can’t get here until 2:30, and my class starts at 2:30, because my class ends at 1:55 um at Holton, so by the time I pack up, get them out like today, one little boy has to play for some type of pro- he’s a fourth grader, he has to play for a program at his church, and so I have started practicing with him for that program so I have to stay, a little later, you know to work with him, but I can go back I told him I would go back, I’d come back and we would stay after school. But you know I just wanted to start with him and so you know it’s like I swoop in and swoop right back out so that can be, kind of difficult getting to know them but! I do email. A lot of them email me [That’s good.] So we do, um communicate by email. So I’ve learned a lot about them. And I’ve allowed them to talk in class too and tell me, about themselves.
K: So it sounds like you’re getting along with going to all four of your schools which I still think is crazy and like, still getting to know your students, um, at least a little bit, but I mean just out of curiosity would you rather like, have a stable place at one school that you can really get to know your students or do you like like, um meeting students from like different schools and like kinda being more, spread out.
W: Um, well because I’m at a place like Munford, and then I’m at a place like John B. Cary, that really gives me a broad perspective. So I really um, actually like not being stable or at one place. So I’ve enjoyed this because, like I said I taught general music so I was just always in a classroom. Um, so I’ve enjoyed smaller classrooms and I’ve enjoyed being at different schools because I mean every school is different. Every school is different. Every school’s climate is different. So I’ve enjoyed being able to go to different schools and, and just meet different children and hear different things and learn about different things because, even in Richmond I mean there’s just so much to learn, and know. I mean they just tell me about all kinds of things at Munford everything that’s going on in the neighborhood [Haha] I mean it’s good things like, places they go and things they do, and I mean it’s so exciting because it’s like, I’ve never really like, been on this town I’ve been, in the west end but not like, where Munford is so it’s exciting to meet them and just learn different things and then be at Obama and I never even knew that- I’ve heard of Jeb Stuart, but I never knew how wonderful the school was and how wonderful the students were. Um so it’s been exciting to go to different schools, I do like that.
K: Can you actually just give me like a quick, like run down on like the different schools that you teach at and like, how they are different like, what’s some, defining characteristics of them? I know you touched a little about it before.
W: Okay well, Munford, uh Munford is in the west end, and, oh my gosh they have so many programs and different things that the children get to experience, and they even have um, like a TV thing that comes on every morning and they broadcast the announcements and the children do all of that. So that’s pretty exciting. And they’re just a close knit, the children are just so nice and sweet. Um so I love Munford, and then, where do I go Holton, um Holton the children are nice and sweet too I just love them they’re so fun. Um, but um they’re, they’re just the big mix you know, they’re, they’re like a melting pot, um, so it’s exciting to be there and just learn different things and the parents are so excited about their children being in band and Munford as well. Um, and then Barack Obama the children are so sweet. And like I said I know that school. I didn’t know it was like that, um, so I really love being there, and um the only drawback is we didn’t have any instruments and I don’t have as many children but we’re going to get that donation! [Yes!] Um, and then John B. Cary, I have a smaller band here but the children are great here as well, and like I said when I get here they’re tired, I’m tired, haha, if they’re tired I’m tired, and so we have um, we have a wonderful relationship but, they laugh at me haha because, you know by then I’m just like, we have, and we have a concert December 6th, so that’s the first school where we have a concert this early. And they got their instruments the, they were the last ones to get their instruments. So most of them didn’t get their instruments until October. [Oh, my gosh.] And we’re now just starting on- we’re now just starting to be able to produce a halfway decent sound and something that looks, or sounds like the note that I need for them to play. So that’s my issue here like I’m (clap) on (clap) them (clap) because (clap) we have (clap) so much (clap) work to (clap) do! So, when it comes to my teaching style yes I am a little different over here because December 6th is right here [Yeah, it is.] So, and they were, and we, we had our recruitment late. Um you know it wasn’t anything it was just, you know the principal you know gave us our day and time and everything like that and so and then by the time you know and me not being here all the time it’s hard to get here and get the papers to them and everything like that so, this, this school is um, it’s great, and we have a lot of work to do over here as well, and we need some more instruments over here as well, haha.
K: Okay. Well, you know, that’s all I have but, thank you so much [No problem!] I really enjoyed this.
W: This has been exciting!

Segment Synopsis: Ms. Windleton explains how teaching at four different schools in Richmond has given her a broad perspective on schools, teaching, and children.

Keywords: children; different; perspective

Subjects: instrument; school

GPS: John B. Cary Elementary School
Map Coordinates: 37.548, -77.482