Bettendorf Middle School
Orchestra Handbook 2009-2010
Megan Cooney, Orchestra Director
Welcome Welcome to another exciting year for the Bettendorf High School Orchestra program. I look forward to working with parents and students throughout the coming year. I want to congratulate all of you who have decided to participate in our program. I hope that the orchestra program can offer to each of you an outlet for your creative talents and energy. As the orchestra director, I will do my best to create an atmosphere that is conducive to enjoyable music making, buy it is through your actions and efforts that we become a cohesive unit that reaches its full potential. You get out of this class what you put into it. The greater your personal efforts, the more you will find yourself enjoying our orchestra. I believe that the orchestra program has something to offer you if you are willing to grasp it. Don’t miss out on your opportunity. Megan Cooney, Orchestra Director Bettendorf High School/Bettendorf Middle School (563) 332-7001 (563) 359-3686 email@example.com
Bettendorf High School Performance Calendar 2009-2010 The following dates should be put on your calendar at home. You are expected to participate in all starred (*) events. Non-starred events are optional. If you spot a conflict, tell your director well in advance.
*Oct. 15, 2009 Oct. 24, 2009 Nov. 19-21 *Dec. 8, 2009 *March 4, 2010 March 11-16 April 17, 2010 *May 7, 2010 *May 11, 2010 May 14, 2010 *May 20, 2010
Fall Concert All-State Auditions All-State Festival Winter Concert Festival of Orchestras Fine Arts Trip State Solo/Ensemble
BHS Aud. Fairfield Ames HS Aud. BHS Gym
7:00 pm Scheduled times All Day 7:00 pm 7:00 pm
Scheduled times TBA 7:00 pm All Day 6:00 pm
Start Large Group Festival BHS Ice Cream Social Concert ISTA State Orchestra Awards Banquet BHS Des Moines BHS Cafe
This schedule is subject to change throughout the year
Orchestra Rehearsal Procedures Each orchestra member should bring their instrument, music, proper equipment and a pencil to every rehearsal. Attendance will be taken when the bell rings. You will be counted as tardy is you are not in you seat with your materials ready to go when the bell rings. The concertmaster will lead tuning immediately after the bell has rung. When the director is ready to begin the rehearsal she will take the podium and talking will cease. It is the belief of the director that members of the orchestra know when subdued talking is acceptable and when it is not. When the director stops the group in the middle of a piece, it is time to listen, not to talk. Rehearsal will end approximately one minute early to give students time to put away their instruments and music. Letters and Bars All music students have the opportunity to earn a letter for participation and achievement. The criterion for receiving a letter is based upon all aspects of the program. Points are awarded in each area according to the following: PERFORMANCES 5 PTS. SOLO/ENSEMBLE CONTEST 10 PTS. EACH EVENT LESSONS 2 PTS. EACH SELECT GROUPS 10 PTS. ATTITUDE & BEHAVIOR 10 PTS. MAXIMUM MUSIC RELATED ACTIVITY 2 PTS. EACH The requirements for earning a letter are as follows 1. Earn a minimum of 60 points during the 2009-2010 school year. 2. Show dedication and commitment toward the organization. 3. Attend all performances. 4. Give 100% effort toward becoming a better player. Students who meet the above requirements will receive a letter for participation in orchestra. Those people who have already earned a letter in a previous year will be awarded a bar instead. Please note that just being a member of the group will not qualify you to receive an award--each of the four requirements must be met. In addition, simply earning the required number of points will not necessarily make you eligible either. (See #2 & #4)
Uniforms Men: Men are provided a tuxedo uniform through the BHS Instrumental Music Program. A $15.00 is assessed to each student for care and maintenance. In order to maintain the appearance of the uniforms, please follow the following guidelines. Men must provide their own tuxedo shirt, bowtie, black dress shoes and socks. 1. When not in use, keep uniforms hung correctly on the hanger and in the garment bag. 2. Inform the directors of fitting problems, stains, or tears, etc. Women: TBA Grading Student grades are based on the following criterion: Concert Attendance – 30 percent Playing tests – 20 percent Participation – 20 percent Written assignments – 20 percent Concert Attendance: Every member of the orchestra is expected to perform at each concert designated as a required concert. Excused absences from concerts include illness or a death in the immediate family. Notification of an excused absence must be given before the missed concert. Other excused absences will be on a case-by-case basis. Playing Tests: Playing tests will be assigned on a regular basis and will be evaluated by the instructor. Rehearsal Participation: Each student is expected to have the proper materials for all rehearsals, including instrument, bow, all music, and a pencil. Students are also expected to participate in a productive manner. Participation points are earned daily for being prepared for class. These points also reflect compliance with classroom rules, such as refraining from eating or drinking in class, not wearing hats in class, and not disrupting instruction. If a students is absent from class, no participation point will be earned for the day. Written Assignments: Reports on stylistic periods, composers, or other approved music material may be assigned. Points will be given at the time of the assignment. Practice Policy All members of the orchestra are responsible for being able to perform their own parts. The only way to do this is to practice. Suggested practice time is an hour a day for maintenance and improvement. Practice sheets will be due at the beginning of every week and are part of your grade.
Facilities We are fortunate to have a well equipped area in which to study music. In order to keep it in good condition and maintain a sense of order, the following rules have been established: 1. Keep chairs and stands in their proper place. 2. Return instruments and music to its proper place following use. 3. Practice rooms are not social gathering areas. They are intended for practice and study. No food or drinks allowed! 4. Director’s desks, office and surrounding area are private and should not be entered without permission. Use of the Orchestra Storage Cabinets Each student will be responsible for maintaining a clean and organized storage area. Storage area checks will be down periodically. The storage cabinets are for your instrument and music and are not to be used to store school books, jacket, etc. Instruments are expected to go home everyday, but especially on weekends. Attendance Policy 1. All students are expected to be present and on time for all music activities. This includes: 2. Regularly scheduled rehearsals--be in the room and preparing for class when the bell rings. 3. Performances--be where you are supposed to at the designated time. Lateness will be counted as being tardy! 4. Special rehearsals and practices which will be called on occasion by the director. Several days notice will be given! 2. If a conflict does arise, it is the student’s responsibility to inform the director at least 1 week in advance of the anticipated absence. 3. Students who wish to be excused from a rehearsal or performance are required to submit an “Absence Request Form” available from the director at least 1 week in advance of the anticipated absence. 4. Excused absences will be at the discretion of the director. Circumstances such as illness, medical, family emergency, etc. are not affected by this policy 5. Work WILL NOT be accepted as an excused absence from any performance! 6. The following consequences will be in effect for dealing with absences and tardies:
A. Failure to attend a performance without prior consent from the director will result in loss of all points toward your grade for that performance. (see grading policies) B. School Handbook policy will be in effect when dealing with class tardies. C. Detention time will be spent practicing your instrument! 5. Failure to attend early morning practices/sectionals will be recorded as being tardy Conflicts in Extra Curricular Activities (from p. 38 of the Student/Parent Handbook) An individual student who attempts to participate in too many extra curricular activities will undoubtedly be in a position of conflict of obligation. The Athletic Department recognizes that each student should have the opportunity for a broad range of experiences in the area of extra curricular activities and consequently will attempt to schedule events in a manner so as to minimize conflict. When conflicts do arise, the sponsors will get together and work out a solution so that the student is not in the middle. If a solution cannot be found, the student will have to make a decision based on the following: A. State competition takes priority over regularly scheduled contests or practices. B. The relative importance of each event. C. The importance of each event to the group involved. D. The relative contribution the student can make. E. How long each event has been scheduled. F. Make a decision in cooperation with the parents. Students who have conflicts with school activities will not be punished by the sponsor of the activity the student chose not to participate in due to the obligations of another activity. These policies will be strictly enforced. If there are individual circumstances which need to be addressed, please talk to us. We are willing to be flexible, but not without communication from you.
Music Rules Concerning Music and Music Folders 1. Each player will be issued a folder at the beginning of the year. Players are expected to take their folders home to practice and a regular basis. 2. It is the player’s responsibility to bring their folder, music and a pencil to every rehearsal. Failure to have proper materials will result in loss of participation points. 3. All music contained in the folder is the personal responsibility of the player. It is each player’s responsibility to report missing music to Ms. Cooney immediately. If the music is not found, the student will be charged accordingly. 4. Each student is responsible for keeping their music within their folder and in a secure place. Use of School Instruments The Bettendorf Instrumental Music Department owns several instruments which are available for use by individuals during their participation in orchestra. These instruments will be checked out by serial number at the beginning of the school year and pre-evaluated for condition. When using school instruments, please observe these rules: 1. Treat school instruments as if they were your own! 2. Students and Parents will be required to complete a “School Instrument Usage Contract” 3. The fee for use of school instruments will be $30.00 4. Students who have been switched to a different instrument or share will be charged $15 per year. 5. Report any damage or difficulty in use immediately to the director. 6. Any damage that occurs as the result of negligence on the part of its user will result in said user being financially responsible for any repairs. 7. Clean and care for your instrument on a regular basis. Lessons/Sectionals Students in the instrumental music program are required to participate in 4 lessons or sectionals during each quarter in order to meet grading requirements. These are a vital part of developing musical skills and enhancing the topics presented during group rehearsals. As in the past, students who study with a private teacher are exempt from taking lessons at school, provided they present written verification from a parent each semester.
Agreement form for Orchestra Members Please read the orchestra handbook carefully and completely. Return this form to Ms. Cooney no later than August 14, 2009.
I have read the orchestra handbook in it entirety and understand the expectations of being a member of the Bettendorf High School Orchestra. Therefore, I understand that I will be held accountable for the information contained in this booklet.
_____________________________________________________________ Orchestra Member Signature
_____________________________________ Orchestra Member Name Printed
Parents: Please sign this document to indicate that you have read this handbook. ______________________________________________________________ Parents Signature
______________________________________________________________ Email Address where you would like orchestra news sent