Dear Beginning Band Parents:
Congratulations to you and your student(s) for successfully completing 12 WEEKS of Beginning Band lessons!
By now, your child should have a small “repertoire” of lesson songs to play for you that should sound recognizable. These songs include: Hot Cross Buns, Mary Had a Little Lamb (aka Rolling Along), Twinkle Twinkle Little Star (aka Mozart Melody) and Jingle Bells. Some of the students can also play London Bridge and the Theme to Star Wars. For the parents of percussion students, please know that your children are playing only the rhythm parts for these songs, so they may not be easily recognizable as there is no melody occurring.
Here are just a couple of important updates:
1. The Beginning Band students DO NOT have any concerts or school performances this month. You may see announcements about the Advanced Band concerts, but those are not for your students who just started to play a band instrument in September. Some beginning band students will be playing on the morning announcements in school later this month. The Beginning Band will play in their first concert on Thursday, MAY 5, 2016.
2. Instruments and ILLNESS…….”tis the season for bugs and viruses! We have been talking in lessons about how to care for instruments FOLLOWING an illness. Here is what your children have been taught…
a. The best way NOT to share germs is not to share their instrument with friends and relatives.
b. If a student is too sick to go to school or to play outside, then they are too sick to play their instrument.
c. Following an illness students need to care for their instruments in a special way:
Flutes: wipe down the mouthpiece and keys of the flute with a disinfectant wet wipe or a paper towel moistened with hand sanitizer, also wipe down the handle of the instrument case. DO NOT USE SOAP AND WATER TO CLEAN THE FLUTE. WATER WILL DAMAGE THE INSTRUMENT. Hand sanitizer evaporates quickly and does not damage the instrument.
Clarinets & Saxes: THROW OUT the reed that was used just prior to becoming sick. Wash the mouthpiece in warm soapy water (dish soap or hand soap is fine) and let it air dry. NEVER put the mouthpiece in the dishwasher!!! Wipe down the keys and case handle with disinfectant wipes or a paper towel moistened with hand sanitizer. Use a brand new reed.
Trumpets & Trombones: Wash the mouthpiece in warm soapy water (dish soap or hand soap is fine) and let it air dry. NEVER put the mouthpiece in the dishwasher!!! Wipe down the keys and case handle with disinfectant wipes or a paper towel moistened with hand sanitizer.
Percussion: Wipe down the drum sticks and drum pad with disinfectant wipes or a paper towel moistened with hand sanitizer.
3. Report Cards: Band students receive marks for Effort, Concepts and Skills on the part of their report card labeled “Instrumental Music”. If you or your child has any questions about those marks, please email me to set up a phone conference where I can answer those questions for you.
As always, thank you so much for your support and encouragement of our band students! This is a really special group of beginners and I am LOVING working with them in lessons! They are hardworking and very serious about their instrument studies, and yet we are also having the best time in lessons too! Just today I overheard a student leave my class saying “I wait all week for lesson day and then it seems like its over in 5 minutes!”…..I feel the same way!
I wish you and your families a wonderful holiday season!
Dear Beginning Band Parents: