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									Dear Members and Parents of the Muir Middle School Band Program: This handbook is to provide the members and parents with a resource of clear rules, regulations and procedures for being a part of the Muir Band Program. This will hopefully answer questions parents or students may have about the program. If all members and parents help in trying to create a well organized program by reading the handbook and understanding the guidelines, the Muir Band Program will be a co-operative effort; one of excellence and quality. Thank You, Ms. Kristin Blanchard Director of Bands Table of Contents Page
Description of Bands………………………………………………….. 2 Solo and Ensemble Festival.................................................................... 2 District Band Festival.............................................................................. 3 Concert Attire........................................................................................... 3 Shoes……………………………………………………………………. 3 Parade Attire............................................................................................ 4 Care of Uniforms.................................................................................... 4 Rehearsal Procedures............................................................................. 4 Grading..................................................................................................... 4 Excused Absence Assignment………………………………………….. 5 Merit Forms............................................................................................. 5 Supplies......................................................................................…...…… 6 Reed Brands ……………………………………………………………… 6 Supplies Needed List…………………………………………………… 6-7 School Owned Instruments...................................................................... 7 Personal Instruments…………………………………………………... 7 Field Trips................................................................................................. 7 Auditions………………………………………………………………… 8 Challenges................................................................................................ 8 Private Lessons....................................................................................... 8 Concerts................................................................................................... 9 Important Phone #’s/Emails…………………………………………… 9 Fall Band Order Form…………………………………………………… 10 Parent/Student Form................................................................................ 11 Band Calendar…………………………………………………………. 12

Description of BandsSixth Grade Beginning Band is a beginning band setting for a sixth grader who would like to try band for one year. Beginning Band is a full year commitment. Students are not expected to have music training prior to Beginning Band. The students will be able to rent instruments during the second week of school. Sixth grade Beginning Band meets for one hour each day in homogeneous instrument classes. Sixth graders will perform in two concerts; one in January and one in May. Please refer to the Calendar for more information. Cadet Band is for the Seventh grade or Eighth grade Band student who has completed Sixth Grade Beginning Band either in Huron Valley Schools or another school. Students will be placed by audition, in the spring of the previous year. Incoming students from other school districts will be placed based on a simple audition on arrival. Students are highly discouraged from participating in Cadet Band if they have not taken Beginning Band. Students will be considered, however, based on each individual situation pending discussion with Ms. Blanchard. Cadet Band students will experience different activities than a Sixth Grade Beginning Band Member. These activities include Middle School Solo and Ensemble Festival, District Band Festival and the Holiday Parade. During this year we will study more in depth music concepts and refine the concepts we've previously learned. Since music is a comprehensive study, we always use concepts we've learned before. Cadet Band will perform in three or four band concerts, one parade and other special events. Please refer to the Calendar for events and dates. Concert Band is for the Seventh grade or Eighth grade Band student who has completed Sixth Grade Beginning Band either in Huron Valley Schools or another school. Students will be placed by audition, in the spring of the previous year. Incoming students from other school districts will be placed based on an audition on arrival. Students cannot participate in Concert Band if they have not taken Beginning Band or have had an equivalent experience in another school. These activities include Middle School Solo and Ensemble Festival, District Band Festival and the Holiday Parade. During this year we will study more in depth music concepts and refine the concepts we've previously learned. Since music is a comprehensive study, we always use concepts we've learned before. Concert Band will perform in three or four band concerts, one parade and other special events. Please refer to the Calendar for events and dates. Jazz Band is offered to any eighth grade student at Muir as an elective during second semester. Students must participate in the Cadet or Concert band or must receive director approval to participate. Students in jazz band will learn jazz theory, history, jazz style and they will learn how to improvise on their instrument. Students will be able to perform many types of music from this genre. The jazz band will perform in the Spring Concert and at other community events, as listed on the band calendar. We will end the school year with a Jazz Band Tour to the elementary schools.

Solo and Ensemble FestivalSolo and Ensemble is a Festival in December at which Seventh or Eighth Grade Band members may wish to participate. It is not a requirement. The students may perform a solo or choose an ensemble of friends with which to perform. Music must be selected or approved by the director. The student(s) will need to sign up for at least 4 time slots of rehearsals with me in the 7 weeks prior to S & E Festival. These rehearsals will be 15 minutes in length and may be before or after school. The sign up sheets will be posted in the Band room and the students will be reminded of the sign up sheet daily. If the student is taking private lessons these rehearsal times may be waived, but they need to check first with the director. Solo and Ensemble festival is in December. I encourage everyone to participate or simply attend Solo and Ensemble Festival. It is a wonderful opportunity to show off on your instrument and receive comments and a rating about YOUR individual playing!

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District Band FestivalDistrict Band Festival is similar to Solo and Ensemble Festival but the entire Band performs together to receive a rating and comments about their playing. Sixth Graders do not attend Band Festival. District Festival is in March and we prepare the pieces beginning right before Winter Break. Festival occurs on a Saturday and will not disrupt the school day. Please refer to the Band Calendar for the date and clear your personal calendar accordingly. The times will be known, as we get closer to Festival. We will perform a Pre-Festival Concert in to prepare for District Festival. Parents are welcome to attend the Pre-Festival Concert and District Festival with us to support the Muir Bands.

Concert AttireSixth Grade Every Band student will need a white dress shirt or blouse and a black skirt or pants for the Concerts. (Girls: Skirts should be knee length or longer) They will also need black dress shoes. The uniform is a very important part of being in Band. We look very professional when we all dress in uniform. Cadet Band and Concert Band The uniform for both Bands for BOYS will consist of black pants, a blue cummerbund, a blue bow tie and a long sleeved white dress shirt. The dress shirt is to be provided by the student and should be buttoned in the front with a collar and cuffs. We provide the other parts of the uniform. Girls—you will be provided the NEW Band Dress for your uniform, but you will need to provide a PLAIN, BLACK, CLOSE TOED shoe for your uniform. Seventh graders and new eighth graders must pay a $30 uniform deposit on uniform hand out day. After the uniform is turned in at the end of eighth grade or when they are through with band, and $20 of the deposit will be returned, if all parts are returned in good condition. The remainder is used for cleaning the uniforms by a professional cleaner. Black dress shoes will be worn with the uniform and are purchased by the student, but ordered by Ms. Blanchard at the beginning of the school year. Jazz Band The uniform for jazz band will be nice clothes that the student owns. Girls are not to wear short skirts. The top will need to be a dress top or sweater. If the student does not own nice clothing, they need to wear the band uniform, minus the bowtie and cummerbund, or the dress (girls). At the beginning of second semester, the students not already in Cadet or Concert band may be issued a pair of black dress pants, if they need some nice pants. They will need to pay a $10 non-refundable deposit for use of the pants

ShoesIn September, an order will be placed for the black shoes worn by the BOYS in Cadet Band and the Concert Band. These shoes are to be worn with both uniforms. Each seventh grader must order shoes and any eighth grader who does not have a pair needs to order at this time. The shoes cost $27.00. As the students grow out of their shoes, they may trade them in for a pair from our “shoe exchange room”. Also, as students leave the eighth grade band, they may donate their shoes to the band for other students to use later. Used Shoes may also be rented from the shoe exchange room at the beginning of 7th grade for a cost of $15.00. As they grow out of them, they just need to bring them back in to be exchanged for a pair that fit.

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Parade AttireSeventh and Eighth Grade students only For the Special Olympics Opening Ceremony Performance in April, you will wear jeans and tennis shoes, along with the blue windbreaker jacket and anything white under the jacket, depending on the weather.

Care of the uniforms-

All 7th graders who are not continuing in band & all 8th graders’ uniforms should be turned in at the end of the year. Please take down any hems from your pants prior to turning them in. You are, of course, encouraged to clean them, if you wish to do so. The uniforms will be cleaned at a group at the end of the year, so dry-cleaning or washing before you turn them in is not required!! We will send them out and take care of that. This cost is built into the usage fee at the beginning of the year.

Rehearsal Procedures1. Upon entering the Band Room, if you are chewing gum, deposit it in the trash receptacle. 2. You will have about 3 minutes after the bell rings to be in your seat with your instrument. This is ample time to get from your previous class, to the band room and be in your seat. Before rehearsal begins, please warm up on your instrument. Watch the podium and await class to begin. 3. Talking during class should be reserved for the director's comments and questions from students. Please raise your hand if you wish to ask a question. 4. Dismissal from rehearsal will be given by the director. You are not to get up and leave without permission from the director. 5. Please keep the Band Room orderly. You are responsible to put your instrument away every day and pick up other things as you leave. Having pride in your Band Room equals having pride in what you DO. 6. Always have your instrument, your music and a pencil for rehearsal. USE ONLY A PENCIL WHEN MARKING MUSIC.

Grading1. The most important part of your grade will be performances. We are a performing class and this will reflect in your grade. All daily learning will be reflected in performances. Performances will be 50% of your grade. 2. Playing tests will consist of 20% of your grade. I may ask you at any time to perform music on which we have been working. 3. Participation will make up 20% of your grade. I will judge your participation on your contribution to class discussions, answering questions, willingness to play solo repertoire and other criteria. Each student begins with 10 participation points daily and these points may be deducted if their instrument is forgotten, music is forgotten, or they do not have a pencil for class. Since we are a performing class, a student cannot perform without these materials. 4. Homework will be 10% of your grade. Homework may include any written work as well as permission slips that need to be signed. Individual progress will be factored into your grade. I will take into account any progress you have made, general attitude, and willingness to perform and/or ask for extra help.

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Excused Performance Make up Assignment
Excused absences prior to a performance from a Middle School Band activity that have been approved by Ms. Blanchard will not affect your grade if you have made arrangements with the director to make up the time missed for the performance in an appropriate manner. This must be completed within the 9-week quarter of the absence.**

1 missed parade= ½ hour of “Musical Community Service” 1 missed Clinic Day=1 ½ hours of “Musical Community Service 1 missed Concert= 1 hour of “Musical Community Service”
**If your absence will be near the end of the marking period, please plan to begin your service in advance so that you will not receive an incomplete!
Suggestions for Service: Playing your instrument at a church service (1 hour of credit given per Sunday/Wednesday) Playing your instrument at a nursing home (1 hour of credit given per visit) Tutoring a beginner on your instrument (hour for hour) Other approved services as approved by Ms. B

Merit Forms/Extra Credit
Students have the opportunity to gain extra credit points toward their grade by submitting merit forms for specified activities. Each merit form is worth at least 10 points. More points will be considered based on individual activity. Merit forms may be used for private lessons, attending musicals, attending orchestra or band concerts other than their own, or attending anything that pertains to the performing arts. Merit forms may be used for many different reasons and simply need director approval prior to submitting them. These will need the signature of a parent/guardian or of the private lesson teacher. Merit forms can be found on the Muir Band Website at www.muirbands.com. You can also simply make up your own on a sheet of paper with a parent signature.

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SuppliesReeds, valve oil, slide grease, or other supplies you may be in need of are available for sale from Ms. B. Please ask about prices. You may also “special order” other items needed. Please allow one week to two weeks for delivery of special order merchandise. Any supplies purchased may be paid for by cash or check, made out to Muir Band Parents. Reed Brands Good reeds are just like cars-the more reputable the brand, the better the product Here are some suggestions for good reed brands for your instrument. Please use these so that you can produce a good sound and the reeds will probably last longer. Oboe Jones LaVoz Clarinet Mitchell Lurie VanDoren* Alto Sax La Voz Vandoren* Tenor or Bari Sax La Voz Rico or Rico Royal Vandoren* In middle school we generally start on a 2 ½ or a medium soft reed for most instruments. Each brand has a different system of strength. For Vandoren, however, use a slightly softer reed than you normally play on; these are made a little stronger. * These are a little more expensive, but worth it! High school students to professionals use them. It is a great idea to have middle school students use these. Supplies needed for all band students’ instruments, for maintenance and upkeep: These supplies can be purchased from Ms Blanchard with cash or a check to Muir Band Parents. You may also buy these items at Milford Music on M-59. Please make sure your student has the items needed ASAP—Ms B will then demonstrate how to use each item for cleaning/maintenance. Flutes: Cleaning rod-most should have this in your case-$4 Cleaning cloth--$2 Double Reeds: Cork Grease-$2 Good Swabs made for oboe/bassoon -$5-15 Reed Protector case-$10-25 Reeds- $10-15

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Clarinets: (prices are appoximate) Swab –$4 Cork grease-$2 Mouthpiece brush-$4 Thumb rest pad (optional—for comfort)-$1 Reed protector case -$4-5 Reeds--$1.75 each or $18 a box Saxophones: Swab -$4 or pad saver $15 Cork grease-$1 Thumb rest pad (optional—for comfort)--$3-4 Reed protector case $4-5 Reeds $2.50/$3.00 each or $25/$30 a box Brass Instruments: Slide Grease-$2 Valve oil-$2 Snake (to clean inside of piping)-$5-8 Mouthpiece brush!!!! $2-4 Mouthpiece case—necessary if they are transporting the mouthpiece and not the entire instrument back and forth to school ---$4-10 TROMBONES ONLY—slide cream/small spray bottle (some may already have in cases)

School Owned InstrumentsInstruments that the school owns are available for use by the students. These instruments are limited and in some cases the instruments may need to be shared by two students. Students may wish to purchase their own mouthpieces. If that is not possible, we use a sanitization spray in order to not spread germs. In the event that an instrument needs to be shared, we will set up a schedule for these students to take the instrument home to practice. The student will fill out an instrument loan form at the beginning of the year. During the course of the year the student may need to have the instrument sent in for repair. These instruments are under a repair agreement with a local music company, Marshall Music. The student simply needs to let Ms. B know of the difficulty, and she will do what she can to get the instrument back into a playable condition. The student is expected to treat the instrument with the utmost respect; as if it were his or her own. We need to keep these instruments in the condition they are in as long as possible.

Personal InstrumentsIf you own or rent your own instrument, you must have a luggage tag with your name, address and phone number on it, visible from the outside. This will help in preventing theft or from students taking the wrong horn.

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Field TripsWe may go on a bus for special trips we might take. During these excursions outside of school, all school rules and bus rules apply. Chaperones will be asked to attend with us to ensure the rules and procedures are followed. Chaperones will be required to fill out a background check form in order to attend.

Auditions take place in May for all 6th and 7th graders continuing in band. Seventh graders in Concert Band do not need to re-audition. They will keep their chair order but will be moved up to the top chairs in their sections. The Cadet Band 7th graders and the 6th graders will receive audition material which will include 2 pieces from Essential Elements Book 2, as well as 4 major scales. The scales do not have to be memorized, but extra points will be given if they are memorized. I will audition the students during lunch and after school. I use a rubric similar to how I grade playing tests throughout the year to grade auditions. They are graded on a 100 point scale. Most students, but not all, over 80 points will be in the Concert Band. Once all the auditions are completed, the results will be posted outside of the band room. The results will show which group the student will be in next year (Cadet or Concert) and will also show their chair placement (i.e. 1st, 2nd, 3rd etc). Most 7th graders make it into Cadet Band and most 8th graders make it into Concert Band. Private lessons can really help boost a player and make them even more successful. Some 7th graders in Cadet Band may choose not to re-audition and will want to stay in Cadet Band, moving to the top of the section in their chair order. If you have any questions throughout the year about auditions, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Auditions

ChallengesChallenges occur in the Cadet Band and Concert Band only. In the spring, all 6th and 7th graders will audition for Cadet Band or Concert Band and will be placed in chairs. I will listen to a live audition and you will be placed in your new seating. In the fall, you may wish to challenge people in front of you for higher seating. Challenges occur two to three times a year, usually in October, January and April. There will be a week that we will have challenges and those seats remain until the next round of challenges. The challenge will take place in class, anonymously, and the decision will be made either by the director or the class, if the challenger will move up a chair or remain the same. You may only challenge one chair up at a time (ie. 4th chair challenges 3rd chair, wins and then can challenge 2nd chair, etc)

Private LessonsIt is highly recommended that students take private lessons. There are private instructors in the area from whom you may choose to take lessons. Private lessons will make you an independent player and you will learn at your pace. There may be things you learn at private lessons that we just can't get to in class. If you have questions about private lessons, please ask, and we can find a teacher for you. Some places to check first are Milford Music or Michigan Music Center in Commerce Twp. There are also a variety of teachers living in the area who teach out of their home or here at Muir. Milford High School will also have upperclassmen available to teach lessons. See Ms. B at the beginning of the year for a new list!

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ConcertsEach student is expected to perform at his or her respective concerts as listed in the Band Calendar. Concerts are the final outcome of our hard work and dedication in class and add up to 50% of each student's grade. Most concerts begin at 7:00pm. Please mark on your calendars the dates and times of performances in which you are to participate. If you are unable to make a performance to due severe illness or another emergency situation, you will be excused. Please inform Ms Blanchard as soon as possible if an emergency occurs. If you need to miss a performance due to another commitment, and this is stated on the permission slip, then the student will be issued a make up assignment. This is for excused absences/prior approved absences, but not for unexcused absences. A no show results in an E for your performance grade. Please see Ms. B for details.

Important Phone #’s/E-mails

Ms. Blanchard’s Muir Phone #-248.684.8060 ext. 6163 E-Mail- Blanchardk@huronvalley.k12.mi.us Muir Band Website: www.muirbands.com Marshall Music #-School Service Dept.-1-800-221-1755
You may call Marshall’s anytime you have a question concerning your rental, or if you wish to purchase supplies using a credit card. They will deliver to Muir twice a week.

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Fall Band Orders Listed below are the upcoming orders that need to be placed for band uniforms. Uniforms will begin being passed out starting Oct. 7th , during class, and fees need to be paid before this date. Boy’s Shoes: New $27.00 Used $15.00 (rented – if size is available) **Shoes can always be exchanged for a larger size if feet grow Uniform Usage Fee: $15.00 (7th graders Only or New 8th graders) Uniform Cleaning Fee: $15.00 (7th graders Only or New 8th graders) Leather Folder Usage Fee: $10.00 **ATTENTION - These are 2 year fees. If you do not continue band in 8th grade, fees are forfeit. Make checks payable to MUIR BAND PARENTS. Please fill out order form and return with payments by Wednesday, Sept. 24th. PLEASE give important size info for uniforms to make fitting process easier. Student: _______________________________ Class (circle one): Concert Cadet 8th Grade (circle one): 7th Parent Contact Name/ Phone #: ___________________________________________ 7th Graders or NEW 8th Graders Price Item Shoes
(BOYS ONLY)

Returning 8th Graders I do not need shoes ________ I need to EXCHANGE for different pair Size______ I would like to buy NEW shoes Size _______ Price $27.00 (*if rented sizes aren’t available then you must purch. NEW)

New size_____ Used size______

Uniform Fees Folder Usage Fees

$27.00 $15.00 $30.00 $10.00

TOTAL PAID

$_________

CASH/CHECK# ____________

We will fit for the girl’s dresses prior to ordering this year. Fee is the same as Boy’s fee. Girls will need to provide a CLOSED TOE, PLAIN, BLACK SHOE for the uniform. Approximate Pant Size Boys only: ________

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Parent Student Agreement Form Band Handbook 2009-10
I have read and understand the guidelines and information in the Muir Band Handbook for the 2009-2010 school year. I have looked at the Muir Band website and am familiar with the resources it has to offer throughout the year. Student Signature______________________________________________Date____________ Parent Signature_______________________________________________Date____________ If you would like to receive group e-mails with updates and event information please list parent e-mails that get checked on a regular basis.

PLEASE PRINT NEATLY!!!!
1)______________________________________________________________________ 2)______________________________________________________________________ 3)______________________________________________________________________ 4)______________________________________________________________________

Please return this page to Ms. Blanchard by Monday, September 14th. This is worth 50 points.

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