This past week, band students got new music and took playing tests to assess their learning this quarter. Here is the week-in-review:
Monday, December 7 – Students got new music today and reviewed for their playing tests.
Tuesday, December 8 – Students reviewed for their playing tests and continued working on their new music.
Wednesday, December 9 – Snow day. No school.
Thursday, December 10 – Students took playing tests in class today.
Friday, December 11 – Students got their progress reports and reviewed their portfolios. There is still one week left to turn in late assignments or ask to redo assignments and playing tests to raise grades.
Here is a summary of band activities from this past week:
Monday, November 30 – The bands ran through their concert order. Student speakers in each class began practicing reading the script for the concert. All the students continued working on their recording reflection in class, fixing areas of the music that they personally identified as needing work.
Tuesday, December 1 – Students played through concert order with the speakers reading the script and continued filling out their reflections.
Wednesday, December 2 – Students played through concert order with the speakers reading the script, finished their recording reflections, and turned them in at the end of class. Students discussed tomorrow’s rehearsal routine the classroom and percussionists were assigned equipment to take to the gym and bring back.
Thursday, December 3 – Students played through concert order for the last time with the speakers reading the script. Mr. Bley recorded the students in class. Students reviewed how to get to their chairs and back to the bleachers and how many chairs to leave empty on the ends of the rows. The concert in the evening went very well and the students did a great job playing and putting equipment away afterward. Congratulations to the 8th graders who won the practice competition.
Friday, December 4 – Students watched a video of the concert and filled out their concert rubrics. Then they erased their music and turned in their concert rubric with their music. They also went through their folders and turned in any late assignments and old music, kept certain items, and threw away papers they didn’t need anymore. Students also worked with Mr. Bley to plan the class calendar for the next two weeks. 8th graders appointed a lock-in committee because they decided that their party would be a lock-in.
It has been a few days since the last blog post, so here is a quick update.
The band concert is scheduled for Thursday, December 3 at 7:30 PM. The students need to wear their band polo with long pants and closed-toe shoes (not sandals). Their shirts will be tucked in, so a belt is a good idea, but optional. Students need to report to the band room to warm-up at 7:00 PM with the jazz band performing their pre-concert music at about 7:15 PM.
Here is what has been going on in class in preparation for our concert.
Wednesday, November 18 – Students continued to rehearse music for concert.
Thursday, November 19 – Students recorded the music in class.
Friday, November 20 – The jazz band was gone to the Baker University Jazz Festival, so the remaining students played musical games.
Monday, November 23 – Students listened to the recordings of the concert music and filled out a worksheet.
Tuesday, November 24 – Students finished listening to the recordings and filling out the worksheet.
The bands are on track to put on a great concert on December 3! The 8th graders played through all of their music today from beginning to end: “For Unto Us,” “I Saw Three Ships,” and “Santa’s Fiesta.” The 7th graders also played through all of their music: “Christmas Celebration,” “Star of Bethlehem,” and “Go Tell It On the Mountain.” The 6th graders learned the last movement of The Nutcracker Suite: “Russian Dance (Trepak).” They also played through all of “A World Holiday Celebration.” They reviewed the first part of “Yo Christmas Tree!” and will learn the rest of the song tomorrow. The 6th graders also continue to lead in the practice competition.
Today it snowed! But we still had school.
The 7th graders made up some ground on the practice competition over the weekend. The 8th graders closed the gap between them and the 6th graders, but the 6th graders continue to lead in the practice competition.
In class today, students continue to rehearse music for the concert. The 6th graders learned to play the 4th movement of the Nutcrackers Suite: “Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy.” The 8th graders had sectionals and worked on “For Unto Us” and “Santa’s Fiesta.” The 7th graders played through all of “Star of Bethlehem.”
The 6th grade band is leading the practice competition with an average of 4.56 cards turned in per student. The 8th graders are close behind with 3.93 cards turned in per student and the 7th graders trail with 1.68 cards turned in per student. So far, students have turned in a total of 427 cards totalling at least 6,405 minutes of practice or 106.75 hours of practice. The winning class will earn a party at the end of the quarter. Keep up the great work and may the best class win!
Students continue to work hard preparing music for our December 3 band concert. The 8th graders played through all of “Santa’s Fiesta” today and are making headway on “I Saw Three Ships” and “For Unto Us.” The 7th graders are working hard on their three songs: “Christmas Celebration,” “Star of Bethlehem,” and “Go Tell It On the Mountain.” The 6th grade band has made excellent progress on “A World Holiday Celebration,” especially the percussionists who have quite a few instruments to cover during the piece.
The December 3rd band concert is three weeks from today!
Today the 8th graders had sectional rehearsal over “Santa’s Fiesta!” Congratulations to Koral Long and Toby King who were selected to participate in the North Central Kansas Music Educators Middle-Level Honor Band!
The 7th graders are making excellent progress on their songs for the concert. As we were rehearsing a particular section of a song over and over again, a student asked in frustration, “Why can’t we just play the whole song?” My response was pretty simple: “If we played the whole thing, it wouldn’t sound good because we haven’t taken the time to work out each section and make each section sound good.” That’s a pretty important lesson that students can learn from participating in band — Excellence comes from doing the little things correctly. Mediocrity comes from doing the big things halfway right.
The 6th graders are making progress on “A World Holiday Celebration” and continue to lead the practice competition.
On Wednesday, the 8th graders continued with sectionals over “For Unto Us.” They are on track to be able to play the entire song tomorrow. They also spent some time working on “I Saw Three Ships.”
The 7th graders made additional progress on “Christmas Celebration.” They are on track to be able to play the whole song tomorrow. They also reviewed portions of “Star of Bethlehem” and “Go Tell It On the Mountain.”
The 6th grade band continues to lead in the practice competition (the 8th graders are in a close second place). The percussionists were assigned additional parts for “A World Holiday Celebration.” Students also reviewed selections for “The Nutcracker Suite” and “The Nutcracker March.”
Today in class the band students continued to make progress on music for their concert. The 7th graders had their playing test over line 171 from memory (Concert Ab Major Scale). The 8th grade band had sectionals of “For Unto Us.” The 6th graders played more of “A World Holiday Celebration.”
Students handed in their third signature sheet today. The practice competition has finished its first week. See the current standings here: Practice Competition.
7th graders finalized their songs for the concert. They will be performing “Go Tell It On the Mountain” instead of “Two French Carols.” Tomorrow they have a playing test over line 171 from memory. This week they are using SmartMusic to assess their ability on line 44.
8th graders worked most of the hour on “For Unto Us.” Several sections have playing tests scheduled for tomorrow. Also tomorrow students will have sectionals over the music.
6th graders played through all of “The Nutcracker March” today. They also worked on the third movement of “The Nutcracker Suite” called “Dance of the Reed Flutes.” Students are learning new notes along the way too. They also started reading through a song called “A World Holiday Celebration.”