MISSOULA – This week’s One Class at time winner is Russell Elementary 5th grade band teacher Randy Zschaechner.
Zschaechner received a $250 grant sponsored by Republic Services and KPAX-TV.
Mr Z, as his students call him, has the task of molding these first-time band students, many of whom have never played an instrument, into a smooth-sounding unit.
He says one of the most important components in making the students better musicians is teaching them the ability to listen to themselves and to the instruments around them during class. He is using the money to purchase resources, including video components, that will hone their listening skills.
“The goal is to develop the whole musician, and I’m hoping that through what we introduce to them now in their first year of playing that they can then use that in the future and become independent, and find their own resources online and how to use them and interact with them and continue developing after I no longer get to see them anymore because they go on to middle school.”