Music Program Frequently Asked Questions

What is the elementary music program?
The elementary music program is instrumental music instruction offered in grades 4 through 6.  Beginning in 4th grade, students may opt for instruction on certain traditional orchestral string - violin, viola or cello.  Beginning in 5th grade they may opt for certain traditional band instruments – trumpet, trombone, flute, clarinet, alto sax, or percussion – or may also choose to learn string bass in addition to the other string instrument options. Students will miss 30 minutes of class time per week for music instruction with the music teacher.  Students will be responsible for completing any missed classwork.  Music instruction is a small group lesson.  Students are expected to practice weekly assignments at home on their instruments.
Are school instruments available?
Yes, school instruments are provided to students who need them in order to participate.  However, there are no alto sax or snare drums available.  Students needing to apply for a district ​band​ instrument must complete and turn in a request form that is attached to the info sheet given at the beginning of the year assemblies.  Students needing to apply for a district ​string​ instrument must be measured, complete the request form and turn it in at one of the parent meetings.  Continuing students are welcome to complete a request but do not need to stay for the meeting. 
What are the advantages of participating in the music program?
It offers an opportunity for musical and performing arts experience.  It gives students another social connection and a positive team environment in a school setting.  Students can learn about habits of daily practice toward achievement of long-term success.  It can also build students' confidence in a public presentation setting.
How does my child begin in the elementary music program?
All students in grades 4 through 6 attend a school assembly prior to the parent meetings during which students are introduced to the various instruments and are given further information to take home to parents. To begin in the elementary music program, parents are required to attend a parent meeting in early September. (Continuing parents DO NOT need to attend a meeting UNLESS they are requesting a district instrument).  The program is described in detail, enrollment forms are filled out and turned in, and families have the option to ask music vendors about renting or buying instruments. Parents whose students will require a school-provided instrument must complete a request form at the start of the year.  Parents may contact the music teacher at their school site at any time with further questions.  
Can my child wait until junior high or high school to join band or orchestra?
Junior high school band and orchestra classes expect at least one year of experience prior to joining in 7th grade. Students who participate in the elementary music program would have the needed experience to join the junior high instrumental groups. Students who have equivalent experience through private lessons could also join in junior high school.
What about choir?
At this time choir is not a standard part of the school day curriculum in the elementary schools. Some elementary schools have before or after school choir programs funded through site or PTO money but is not always taught by a credentialed music teacher. School day choir instruction begins in 7th grade and is open to students who have no prior experience.