The winner of my pottery give away drawing was David Vandewalker.....my middle school band director from Ada, OK. Facebook sure makes the world seem small and full of reconnections! I remember once (actually several times) he gave a tuner to the three oboes and told us to go into the practice room to tune. We were not to return to the band until we were "in tune." At the time, I thought it was odd, but on every occasion we took this task seriously and proceeded to spend a large chunk of the band period in the practice room seeking the nirvana that is "in tune." Years later, when I found myself the teacher of beginning band with the help of small group lessons weekly as well as TWO teachers for the 150 4th and 5th graders, I saw the tuning request for the sanity saver it must have been for him. No beginning and should have two oboes much less three. Mr. Vandewalker had full 6th grade band every day, but I don't think we had any small group lessons, no Smart Music, no helpers.....just Mr. V. Despite the limitations of the program set up at the time, we learned to play really well. We loved music, and all three oboes for that year continued and were still playing for the Ada High School Band when I moved from Ada after 10th grade. I have thought of him often as I went on to teach middle schoolers and high schoolers and I realized what a gift his instruction was! Mr. Vandewalker and my band director at the high school, Mr. Warren, were the biggest influences on my becoming a band director. Thanks a billion! I am thrilled to pieces that you won my little drawing!
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