PSMS BAND UPDATE: Week of August 24
The first week is "in the books"! It's been so nice having your enthusiastic students back in school this first week and a half! We will soon be introducing practice logs to 6th graders, and our weekly AFL's for 7th and 8th Graders. Stay tuned.
Monday 8/24 - A Day
Instrument / Equipment Inspections begin for gr. 6 - 8 (see below) 6th Beg. is exempt
Tuesday 8/25 - B Day
Wednesday 8/26 - A Day
Thursday 8/27 - B Day
Friday 8/28 - A Day
6th GRADE BEGINNING BAND
The next several class periods we will be introducing and testing out the different instruments that students have the option to play in beginning band. Please do not go out and rent or purchase an instrument until this process has concluded and you have received confirmation from Mr. Aubrey as to what your students' instrument. Everyone will be kept updated as to the progress of this process and you will receive a definitive date as to when students will need to have their instrument at school for band. Please note: If your student ends up playing an instrument you have at home already, if it is older or has been sitting around a long time it is likely that it will need to be inspected / serviced / cleaned / repaired by an instrument repair technician. This could take a couple of weeks to get back once it is taken in to the shop. In some cases it may be necessary to do a "1 month rental" so your student has what they need to start band at the same time as everyone else. The first few weeks are critical to successful student learning. Please let Mr. Aubrey know if you have any questions.
Please know what day it is: A or B. Several students forgot their instruments and/or music this week. We understand that middle school is new, but it's each student's responsibility to have their equipment for each class. Plan ahead and have your things packed and ready to go the night before - it will make things much easier for you in the morning when you're trying to run out the door!
SOUSA HONOR BAND
Sousa Honor Band tryout music was handed out to 7th and 8th graders this week! The KS Sousa Honor Band is a state wide honor band (the middle level version of All-State) where students can learn, record, apply, and submit a recording of their playing audition music to be a part of the 2016 Sousa Honor Band. The honor band takes place the weekend of January 22 - 23, 2016 at the Lied Center at KU. Judges pick the honor band based on the audition recordings from across the state (400+ auditions last year!) It is a very big honor for students to be selected to the KS Sousa Honor Band, and all students are encouraged to try out! (This is an optional activity outside our normal band activities)
One of the best ways to improve quickly and efficiently on your instrument is with the one-on-one instruction afforded through private lessons. Think of the teaching ratio as 1:1 rather than 1:39 (7th grade band this year). Sometimes having a "tutor" is viewed as having a deficiency in a subject area (i.e. Math tutor or a Reading tutor). In music, that is not the case at all!
While it can and will help struggling students, typically the best musicians in the band are the ones who are studying with a private instructor. Having this instruction will make a huge impact on your development from a musical skill / technical standpoint as well as cognitive standpoint - not to mention motivational and helpful in preparing for auditions, chair tests, and solo / ensemble festival!
If you are interested in learning more or would like a recommendation for an instructor, please let me know. We are fortunate to have many great instructors in our area.
If you are getting BRACES put on, taken off or adjusted this year, please plan around the dates of our performances to avoid conflicts.
Your student will likely be able to play very little, if at all, immediately after this major work is done. Students probably need at least 2 - 4 weeks to adjust from the trauma to the mouth and embouchure. Embouchure (facial / mouth muscles) 'muscle memory' totally changes when braces are applied, taken off, or possibly even adjusted; and it is going to take some time for your student to physically adjust to the changes. Please keep this in mind when scheduling ortho / dental visits around concert events! We want your student to have every opportunity for success!!
Some GREAT solutions to help out students with braces (especially brass players & flute players):
INSTRUMENTS FOR SALE
Some former students have instruments for sale that you can contact if you are looking to purchase an instrument:
Gemeinhardt 30SHB Solid silver head joint, silver plated body, gold lip plate, B foot joint and offset G key. (this is a step-up instrument)
firstname.lastname@example.org Home: 913-499-1500 Cell: 561-351-7225
Flute: Armstrong student flute
Karen Hardeman email@example.com 913-485-7414
Trombone: Holton 602 student trombone
Julie Bamburg firstname.lastname@example.org 913-634-2171
Students will have an inspection beginning on 8/24 to make sure they have all the supplies they need for band classes. 6th Beginners will have inspections after instruments are chosen and instruction has started.
1 solid BLACK ½" binder
20 clear sheet protectors
(matte finish work best)
(to be kept in band binder at all times)
1 box of facial tissues
to be brought to band
on instrument case (water proof)
Metronome and Tuner App
for smart phone / tablet
Traditions of Excellence Bk 1
(6th Grade only)
Instrument care kit
(reeds, oil, grease, swabs, polishing cloths, mouthpiece cleaning brushes, etc.) Specific brands/strengths/types etc.:
1. mouthpiece brush
2. cleaning brush (snake brush)
3. valve oil (Al Cass Fast is recommended)
(tpt, btns, tuba)
4. rotor oil
(French horns and trigger trombones)
5. tuning slide grease
6. Yamaha Slide Lubricant & water misting bottle
7. brass or silver polishing cloth
1. *mouthpiece cleaning brush
2. silk swab (flutes use a flute rod and thin, soft cloth)
(3 good, playable reeds should always be available)
(VanDoren or Mitchell Laurie reeds recommended - strength 2.5 for 6th Gr. 3 for 7th / 8th Gr) **unless your private teacher suggests otherwise**
4. *reed guard (to hold and protect extra reeds)
5. *cork grease
6. polishing cloth
(* Items DO NOT apply to flute players)
1. Percussion Stick bag, to hold, organize, and protect sticks, mallets, etc.
2. Vic Firth SD1 General snare drum sticks
3. Balter #10 (black acrylic) , #4 (med hard rubber) birch handle mallets (or equivalent)
4. Innovative Percussion yarn marimba mallets (or equivalent)
5. Vic Firth T1 General Timpani mallets (or equivalent) (optional)
6. Tuning pitch pipe for timpani (optional)
6th - 8th grade percussion students are expected to have either a student marimba, or student xylophone at home for home practice. Bell kits are not acceptable. More information was emailed home today 8/21.