Episode 4: Chair Testing: The Pros and Cons


Chair testing is a common practice in band programs but is it necessary? In this episode, we are diving into chair testing and what we have experienced in our own programs. If you currently chair test with your students or are questioning if you should or shouldn’t be chair testing, this episode is for you!

We’re all familiar with assigning students as first chair, second chair, etc. but is it beneficial to the band or orchestra? There is no one right answer to whether or not you should chair test, be today, we are sharing our thoughts on it. We are talking about our personal experiences with chair testing, the pros of chair testing in your program, and what cons come along with it.

Looking for a music theory supplement for your beginning band class? Check out our Quarter Note Companion Theory book! Each book is instrument specific and focuses on the skills that instrument needs to learn!

Tell us what you think of this episode! We would love to hear from you! Head to our website and send us a message or connect with us on Instagram.

In this episode we cover:

  • Kevin and Jessica’s personal experiences with chair testing
  • Three pros to chair testing your students
  • The cons of chair testing in your program, especially in elementary and middle school
  • What we are trying as an alternative to chair testing in our program

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More about The First Six Notes with Classroom Composers

The First Six Notes Podcast with Classroom Composers is for band teachers and string teachers looking for great information from experienced teachers. 

Every other week, we’ll dive into everything about teaching band and string music students. We’re covering everything from pedagogy to fundraising and interviewing successful music teachers, composers, admin, professional private studio teachers, and more to uncover and share their strategies for musical success. 

Classroom Composers is a married team of two music teachers, Kevin Hoff and Jessica Frank. Between the two of us, we have experience teaching K-6 general music, elementary 4/5 band/strings, and middle school band/strings/guitar who want to share our knowledge and experience with other teachers.

Grab a chair and stand and join the conversation!