Sixth Grade Band at AMS
About Sixth Grade Band
Students in the beginning band are in a performing ensemble. While students will learn how to play an instrument, the purpose of band is to explore music through performance and develop as an individual musician to enhance ensemble playing. Theory, history, culture, form, texture, rhythm, and expression can be experienced as a member of the band. The participation and interaction from all students leads to greater understanding and execution of musical skills through performance. All of these elements culminate in the public performance of music as an ensemble. The performance is the reward of a lot of hard work and intense learning through rehearsal and individual practice.
Students may select from the following instruments: Flute, Clarinet, Alto Saxophone, Trumpet, Trombone, Baritone, and Percussion.
Classes are currently set up in homogeneous groupings (woodwinds, brass, percussion to include bells and snare drum).
The beginning band class provides an instrumental experience for students with emphasis on developing performing skills and musicianship. Students will gain an understanding of music fundamentals and will learn about music primarily through in class rehearsals that emphasize basic skills such as scales and arpeggios, rhythm exercises, and tuning exercises as well as special performances of music literature.
Students enrolled in band will be required to participate in all performances. On occasion some extra rehearsals may be required prior to performances. While after school rehearsals are very rare at the beginning level, I want parents to know in advance that it is a possibility. Every effort to provide you with advance notification will be made. Students are also required to practice individually each week and will have to perform music individually for the director.
6th Grade Required Performances Concert Performance End of 1st Semester Concert Performance End of 2nd Semester Additional Concerts for School or Community Events Solo Festival in April (2nd Semester: Details to follow)
The cost associated with band is dependent upon the student’s instrument selection. Cost will also vary with instrument brand and model. Additional consideration must be undertaken when considering a “new vs. used” instrument.
Parents are to Provide
- A quality band instrument and its accessories: Reeds for clarinets and saxophones, cleaning kit for all wind instruments, folding music stand, and band book: Division of Beat Book 1A by Haines and McEntyre. This book will be for the instrument your child will be playing, Ex: Flute, Clarinet, Alto Saxophone, Trumpet, Baritone (bass clef), Trombone, Tuba, and Percussion
- A quiet place at home for your child to practice
- A regular time for daily home practice
- Lots of encouragement!
Decision concerning New vs. Used Instrument
New Instrument - more expensive, shinier (motivation factor) , needs to be ‘broken in’, usually guaranteed
Used Instrument - less expensive, sometimes not as nice looking, sometimes needs repair, usually “as is”
Retailers have different plans in which to purchase an instrument. Most offer varying rental programs for financing an instrument to suit the individual. Some retailers offer discounts for full, up-front payment for certain instruments. Parents may purchase instruments anywhere they wish—however, I usually suggest buying locally; it’s more convenient, generally faster service and contributes to the local economy. A few local dealers are:
- Emiron Music 101 2nd Ave NE, Decatur 353-0772
- Gadsden Music 4800 Whitesburg Drive, Huntsville 880-6344
- Hallman’s Music 1920 Sparkman Drive, Huntsville 830-2303
- Railroad Bazaar 1207 Edison St. Athens 232-5800
- Southeastern Musical Services 3308 9th Ave., Huntsville 539-5906
The band has a limited number of Baritones and Tubas that students may rent at a reduced price. The money collected goes towards the upkeep of the instrument and is only $50 per school year. This is much less than the typical rental agreement through a music store. Once again, the number of instruments available is limited and selection for these instruments would be on a first come first serve basis.
Contact Athens Middle School Band Director Dr. Shawn Castleberry at firstname.lastname@example.org.