I just got back from taking 18 of my 3rd-6th graders on a little performance field trip. We played the National Anthem at American Fork High for a basketball game.


Why? Why? Why do I bring these things upon myself?



There are several reasons, none of them seem all that valid right now, when I’m tired. Tired of the kids and just tired.
1-After we played the National Anthem at Lone Peak’s basketball game in December, the kids were SO excited. They felt like they were the most important ‘musicians’ in the world when they got that huge applause. I want them to have that kind of experiences with music.

2-We had already learned the song, so it wasn’t that much rehearsal to just adjust it for the few kids that are new this semester. I felt like since we had already put so much work into the song, it would be a waste not to play it again.

3-I want to share the love of handbells and handchimes. Most people who go to a basketball game haven’t seen or heard anything like this before, and so we want to share our art.

4-I may be trying to prove to myself or anyone who cares that I can actually do this job of teaching a chime choir. Maybe.


This time, at least, it was only ONE game. When we played at Lone Peak, they had us play for the girls’ game at 5:30, then play for the boys game at 7:00. This time it was just one game, but we still had too much time. I had everyone meet over at the school too early, and we had too much time to kill. We found music stands, rehearsed our song a few times, but don’t want to overrehearse, so we played a little game, then got ready. I told the kids if they wanted to do more fun stuff like this, they would be ABSOLUTELY silent in the halls. We had to go around the auditorium (where they were just starting the school play) go outside, and around to the gym door. Try keeping the kids quiet through that!

They actually did GREAT. The song sounded nice, and even though they were nervous, they played well.


Two people stopped me on my way out and said, “That was amazing!” The second one was a cop, who put his hand on my arm. I thought I was in trouble, but he said, “WoW! They did GREAT! I guess that’s why I do it.

Afterward, we traipsed back outside and around to the music rooms, put the chimes back in the boxes, and hauled them to the car. I brought four noisy boys home with me.

And my hubby just brought me a shake, and it tastes yummy and feels great going down my throat.

I can feel proud of a job well done. I can feel good that I got those squirly kids to calm down long enough to learn and perform our national anthem, and hopefully they are learning a thing or two about music along the way.