Expectations

Event Attendance

Our daily rehearsals are preparations for public performances.  It is imperative that students attend these performances for the sake of themselves and others.  A performance could be a traditional concert in the Hamilton gym or be a marching band competition at a university, but they are always a defining culmination of many daily rehearsals.  Without attending, a sense of completion and accomplishment that comes from working towards a landmark will be missing from the student’s experience.

Practicing 

Students are expected to practice their instruments on an individual basis.  Rehearsal time is used to illustrate techniques of how to play in an ensemble, but individual need to use time to hone their individual skills on their own particular instrument.  If, for whatever reason, practicing at home is not an option, students are more than welcome to use any of the ample practice space at school.  No matter the age or ability level, these techniques will make your practicing much more efficient.

  • A small amount spread out over more days is much more effective than a long period of time over one day.  This is especially true for beginners! But overall, ten minutes is considered by many music educators to be the minimum amount of time needed for improvement to occur.
  • Remember, in order to improve, you must play something that is somewhat challenging.  Familiar exercises and pieces are great warm ups, but don’t waste time working on things you’re already mastered.
  • If you reach something that seems too challenging, remember our process of: “Say the note, Say the note in rhythm, Say the note in rhythm while showing the fingering or position.”
  • Don’t always practice from the beginning to end of a piece, or even difficult passage.  Find the most challenging section, start there. Begin at the end, the play the middle.  Using a variety of starting points will make big improvements.
  • Repetition is the most important ingredient to the mastery of any subject.  In other words, playing through something “once or twice” will not yield any results.

School Expectations  

Be responsible, Be respectful, Be safe.  Every student should be able to recite those words by heart because those are the school wide expectations for all students.  A positive “extra” of being in a band is that many times we will go somewhere to perform.  We must always remember these expectations because we are representing our school and our community.