Teaching female students - sitting position

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Yisrael van Handel
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Re: Teaching female students - sitting position

Post by Yisrael van Handel » Sun Jun 26, 2016 1:19 pm

I see that Yoram Zerbib (see YouTube) plays in the Flamenco position, and he appears to be a reasonably good guitarist. I cannot imagine teaching youngsters to play that way (too limiting), but maybe I am wrong? (Continuation of subject "How to teach girls.")
Yisrael van Handel
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bear
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Re: Teaching female students - sitting position

Post by bear » Sun Jun 26, 2016 2:46 pm

Yisrael van Handel wrote:I see that Yoram Zerbib (see YouTube) plays in the Flamenco position, and he appears to be a reasonably good guitarist. I cannot imagine teaching youngsters to play that way (too limiting), but maybe I am wrong? (Continuation of subject "How to teach girls.")
Yisrael,
I'm sorry you became the target of my rant. I have 3 daughters, the oldest is now almost 50 and 4 grand-daughters. I spent many nights holding the them while they cried because there was something that they were not allowed to do because they were "girls". It's hard to believe that this sort of thing still exists.
I was recently chastised as being offensive to an entire gender because I said something unflattering about an individual and yet the solution to the current issue is to tell girls that hey must take extraordinary measures in order to play an instrument-just because they are "girls". We tell our daughters that there are things they can and cannot do because of safety.This is not an issue of safety. It is one of opportunity.
I think there is something wrong in telling them that they must make a spectacle of themselves by wearing additional items of clothing (which are clearly not part of the uniform) or put some sort of drapery on their laps because they are "girls". Put the boys in skirts and we'll see how fast things change.

Again, I should not have focused my rant on you, you're not the one who made my baby cry.

bear
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Yisrael van Handel
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Re: Teaching female students - sitting position

Post by Yisrael van Handel » Sun Jun 26, 2016 4:10 pm

Hi, bear,
Big of you to reach out. I was a little taken aback by your comments. The matter is forgiven and forgotten. What bothers me is liberal Americans who take their own values as givens and absolutes. I just wanted to say that I live in a completely different world with completely different values. The human problems are still the same. And you see that we have common issues, such as how to teach girls.
Yisrael van Handel
Modi'in Ilit, Israel

Robin
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Re: Teaching female students - sitting position

Post by Robin » Sun Jun 26, 2016 9:21 pm

Yisrael van Handel wrote:Hi, bear,
Big of you to reach out. I was a little taken aback by your comments. The matter is forgiven and forgotten. What bothers me is liberal Americans who take their own values as givens and absolutes. I just wanted to say that I live in a completely different world with completely different values. The human problems are still the same. And you see that we have common issues, such as how to teach girls.
I think Mr. van Handel's point is valid. We need to consider the cultural framework that the student is part of. If the school requires girls to wear dresses, as is in the case presented by the original post, we need to work from that point. Even in the U.S. it is possible to have students who enroll in guitar lessons or classes who require accommodation for their cultural/religious values.

On the topic of "how to teach girls", I think this is only an issue in that guitar has long been a male dominated field. As a teen in the late 1970"s, I wanted to play guitar but didn't want to study with a male teacher and was unable to find a female teacher so chose not to learn at that time. When I revisited my desire to learn guitar as an adult, I was bold enough to study with male guitar teachers and so went on to earn my music degree with guitar as my major instrument. I taught beginning guitar for 7 years and found that 80% or more of my studio enrollment were female students. The only difference that I really noticed between them and the male students was that the girls tended to pay more attention to detail, were more serious and less inclined to want to quit to take rock guitar lessons. All of my students participated in local music festivals and competitions.

Bottom line: meet the student on his/her terms, be creative and make it possible for them to play.

Robin
So much music, so little time.

celestemcc
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Re: Teaching female students - sitting position

Post by celestemcc » Mon Jun 27, 2016 1:04 am

Andrei -- no offense meant; but it's not always a practical solution for students is all. You don't have to accomodate the clothing to the guitar -- as a man, you don't need to. You're using a strap for comfort in playing, not to keep your legs together in a narrow skirt. Playing with a strap work for you and many people, no doubt!. My point is really that girls shouldn't have to be restricted from playing because of the archaic nature of their school uniforms. As one woman poster said above, a skirt is essentially like tying one arm behind one's back -- having had to wear enough of them in my lifetime, I know! :). We women shouldn't have to modify how we play the guitar just because of our clothes... So, for these young women, I feel they should change the clothes, not the instrument or the traditional way to teach it. Now if it's a matter of comfort in terms of pure ergonomics, that's a different matter entirely!
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celestemcc
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Re: Teaching female students - sitting position

Post by celestemcc » Mon Jun 27, 2016 1:12 am

There's accommodation to culture, and a false cultural imperative: in Britain, for girls to only be able to wear a short narrow skirt is out of step with culture, and is archaic, same in the US. In many other countries, where a dress or skirt is everyday wear, it's also typically long and full, which will easily accommodate guitar playing position. (I'm thinking of Lily Afshar here when she's in Iran.) And some traditional clothes (like the Indian salwar kameez) are actually trousers. But Britain? Let them wear trousers of leggings, and life goes on!
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muirtan
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Re: Teaching female students - sitting position

Post by muirtan » Mon Jun 27, 2016 7:42 am

After all these debates maybe it would be better to approach the head and ask for the girls to be allowed to change into trousers just for the guitar lesson same as they would change into shorts of PE kit for lessons. It really shouldn't be a big deal.

When my daughter was in 6th form (20+ years ago) over half her lessons were lab based. and skirts were the 'uniform'. We/ she appealed to the head on safety grounds. She was short so even to read a burrette she needed to stand on a stool. The uniform did get changed to smart trousers. I think originally the main concern was the girls would turn up in jeans.

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bear
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Re: Teaching female students - sitting position

Post by bear » Mon Jun 27, 2016 11:02 am

muirtan wrote:After all these debates maybe it would be better to approach the head and ask for the girls to be allowed to change into trousers just for the guitar lesson same as they would change into shorts of PE kit for lessons. It really shouldn't be a big deal.
Ah! A voice of reason and common sense.
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AndreiKrylov
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Re: Teaching female students - sitting position

Post by AndreiKrylov » Mon Jun 27, 2016 10:34 pm

celestemcc wrote:Andrei -- no offense meant; but it's not always a practical solution for students is all. You don't have to accomodate the clothing to the guitar -- as a man, you don't need to. You're using a strap for comfort in playing, not to keep your legs together in a narrow skirt. Playing with a strap work for you and many people, no doubt!. My point is really that girls shouldn't have to be restricted from playing because of the archaic nature of their school uniforms. As one woman poster said above, a skirt is essentially like tying one arm behind one's back -- having had to wear enough of them in my lifetime, I know! :). We women shouldn't have to modify how we play the guitar just because of our clothes... So, for these young women, I feel they should change the clothes, not the instrument or the traditional way to teach it. Now if it's a matter of comfort in terms of pure ergonomics, that's a different matter entirely!
Yes, I totally agree that everybody have right to do things in the best wayfor them (when it is not becoming danger for others :)) .
When I taught in a music school for a while - I had many female students and this was never been a problem... I never insisted on any kind of clothing code and they played (mostly in "classical" position) as they wish..
But yes I remember that for pupils concerts administration insisted on long dresses or pants...
Therefore in general I Totally support freedom of choice how to play for both sexes.
(it is also good if you do not develop back pain while playing a lot for years and years) :)
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Sharon Vizcaino
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Re: Teaching female students - sitting position

Post by Sharon Vizcaino » Mon Jul 04, 2016 7:25 pm

...now, I haven't read the whole thread, just first and third pages. But as a woman who was forced to grow up in a country were most girls wear skirts as uniforms, has anyone actually thought of asking the girls what they want? I, for one, would've jumped at the chance to get rid of the stupid skirts. Others, perhaps not. I think some girls would be fine with the slacks, others would be fine with the leggings. I think if enough of them are interested in slacks, you should take it up with the school administration. Otherwise, it's sending the message that women do not belong playing guitar and ought to jump extra hoops to play. I also would be firmly against teaching them to play in a different way. There's a reason most people play classical guitar in that position, and changing that because of a skirt is downright silly.

Finally, this might be a little too women's-liberal-arts-college-student of me, but distracting for the teacher? It really, really shouldn't be. If it is, it is you and not the girls and their clothes who have a problem.
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muirtan
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Re: Teaching female students - sitting position

Post by muirtan » Mon Jul 04, 2016 8:06 pm

Sharon Vizcaino wrote:..

Finally, this might be a little too women's-liberal-arts-college-student of me, but distracting for the teacher? It really, really shouldn't be. If it is, it is you and not the girls and their clothes who have a problem.
I think it was more from the point of view of the students, don't forget this is a co-ed school with teenagers. I , even at my advanced age,don't play guitar with a fitted knee length skirt even in the privacy of my own home it just isn't comfortable.

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Sharon Vizcaino
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Re: Teaching female students - sitting position

Post by Sharon Vizcaino » Mon Jul 04, 2016 8:16 pm

muirtan wrote:
Sharon Vizcaino wrote:..

Finally, this might be a little too women's-liberal-arts-college-student of me, but distracting for the teacher? It really, really shouldn't be. If it is, it is you and not the girls and their clothes who have a problem.
I think it was more from the point of view of the students, don't forget this is a co-ed school with teenagers. I , even at my advanced age,don't play guitar with a fitted knee length skirt even in the privacy of my own home it just isn't comfortable.
Ah, I see. Even so, the issue here has nothing to do with the girls. Rather, you teach the boys to be decent human beings and respect the girls! Really, this is guitar, things like these should not be a problem...
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muirtan
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Re: Teaching female students - sitting position

Post by muirtan » Mon Jul 04, 2016 9:11 pm

I'm not saying the boys wouldn't be but I think I know the type of skirt having seen a good few uniforms in my time and sitting to play guitar the skirt would ride up a lot. If I in my teens had to sit like that in a mixed group I would have felt embarrassed. I think the OP is being considerate in trying to find a way around putting the girls in this position.

When my daughter was 16 she had to wear a skirt to school. As she was short and studying science for parts of the practical sessions she needed to stand on the bench/ stools. The boys were no problem but she didn't like it. She did petition to get the dress code changed to smart trousers as an alternative. Not everyone likes showing all their leg!

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Sharon Vizcaino
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Re: Teaching female students - sitting position

Post by Sharon Vizcaino » Mon Jul 04, 2016 9:47 pm

No, I get that, I wouldn't like it either, I'm generally just against the argument that it's "distracting for men" because it shouldn't be. Once again, I suggest asking the girls for their opinions. I doubt forcing them to do something they don't want to do is going to do anything other than frustrate them, and I know that, I, once a stubborn teenager (and now just a stubborn, bitter college student :P), would've even quit just to spite the teachers.
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muirtan
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Re: Teaching female students - sitting position

Post by muirtan » Mon Jul 04, 2016 10:36 pm

Sharon I don't think anyone has said that. You were the first to mention about it being distracting as in:-

"Finally, this might be a little too women's-liberal-arts-college-student of me, but distracting for the teacher? It really, really shouldn't be. If it is, it is you and not the girls and their clothes who have a problem."

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