Here are the answers to some frequently asked questions that band students and parents may have. If you have a question that is not addressed on this page, feel free to contact me via email or phone! You can also leave a comment below.
LESSONS AND REHEARSALS
What time do rehearsals begin?
A: Rehearsals begin at 3:00pm. Walk directly to the music room at the end of the day so you will have time to put your instrument together and warm-up.
Do I have to bring my stand to school?
A: No. There are stands available in the music room.
Will my lesson always be at the same time?
A: No. Band lessons occur on a rotating basis so that students do not miss the same class consistently.
What should I do if I am not at school on my lesson day due to illness or a family emergency?
A: See Ms. Thelen right away so she can schedule a make-up lesson.
What should I do if I forget my instrument at home?
A: If you forget your instrument at home call someone who can bring it to school. If no one is able to bring your instrument to school come to your lesson and observe so that you do not miss any new concepts, important information or handouts.
What is a goal sheet and how do I fill it out?
A: A goal sheet lists your practice assignment for the week and is where you track of how much time you practice at home. The goal sheet should be kept in your binder in the appropriate section. It is important to READ your assignment BEFORE you practice so you will be prepared for your next lesson. At the end of the week, add up the number of minutes and put that number in the “Total Minutes” box. Then have a parent/guardian sign your goal sheet.
Do I have to practice if I am sick?
A: Yes and no. Even if you are sick you should try to complete as much of that week’s assignment as possible. You can listen to your CD and finger along to familiarize yourself with the songs. This counts as practice time so be sure to write it on your practice log! If you are so sick that you cannot attend school, are injured, or in the hospital, do not practice.
I am having trouble reading the notes…What should I do?
A: There are several things you can do to improve note reading.
1) First, I would highly recommend practicing your flashcards! These are a great resource and easy way for you to learn your notes.
2) Next, practice each exercise one measure at a time. Think about each note carefully before playing the measure three times. Move to the next measure and do the same thing.
*You can look up any notes that you do not know in the back of your book.
3) You can also check out the fun note quizzes that can be found on the “Music Links” page.
4) If you are still having trouble reading the notes tell Ms. Blevins so she can give you additional help.
Do I have to take private lessons?
A: Private lessons are not mandatory but taking private lessons will enhance your overall sound and musical ability. Private lessons are not just for students who are struggling! Lessons are for EVERYONE!
I have braces and it hurts to play my instrument…What should I do?
A: There are special products called “lip protectors” or “brace guards” that can help easy pain for musicians with braces. These should be available for purchase at any local music store for $5 to $10.
Is there band in the summer?
A: Yes! I will have more information about summer band available in the spring.
Can I leave my instrument at school?
A: Yes and no. Students who practice at home should take their instruments home. Students who are unable to practice at home may practice after school and may leave their instrument in their band locker.
Are there any tests or quizzes in band?
A: Yes. All students will complete playing quizzes from Essential Elements for Band throughout the school year.
Is band for a grade?
A: No. There is not an “official” band grade on your report card, but playing quizzes will be taken into consideration when recognizing students at the end of year banquet. Students who work hard and do well on playing quizzes are more likely to receive awards, trophies and medals!
INSTRUMENT & SUPPLY QUESTIONS
How long should my reed last?
A: If you care for your reed properly, it should last for at least two to three weeks. Reeds should be kept in a reed guard so they do not become chipped. DO NOT KEEP YOUR REED ON YOUR MOUTHPIECE! IT WILL GROW MOLD!
Where can my mom or dad buy supplies for my instrument?
A: There is a list of local music stores on the last page on the Lancer Band handbook. All of these stores carry instrument supplies.
Clarinet and alto saxophone reeds can be purchased from Ms. Thelen for $1 each.
Oboe reeds can be purchased from Ms. Thelen for $5 each.