Here are some frequently asked questions from new band members (and their parents) and the answers.
1.) How much should I be be practicing?
At RHS, we do not require students to complete "practice cards" indicating how much time they practice on their instrument. However, we highly encourage daily practice! A student will improve their musical abilities significantly more by practicing a little each day instead of practicing for a longer period of time once or twice a week. Much of practicing involves the building up of muscle memory and if we leave that training for even a few days the muscles will "forget" what they learned. As a result, music practice cannot be "crammed" like a person might do for a test. Success in music can only be achieved through the repetitions that a daily practice routine brings!! Regular consistent practice is the "homework" for Band and insures musical growth, successful lessons and a good grade in Band!
The general rule is to average 30 minutes of practice per day, practicing lesson material and mastering the band music. Advanced students will practice more. Some students practice less. The idea is to establish the relationship between practicing and success in band. If you practice more you will earn good grades in lessons, play better and enjoy it more! This will also enhance your success in auditions.
THE MINIMAL EXPECTATION FOR PRACTICE FOR ALL RHS BAND MEMBERS IS FOUR 20 MINUTE PRACTICE SESSIONS PER WEEK.
2.) Do I need need to haul my instrument back and forth to school everyday?
With the exception of tuba, baritone, bass clarinet and percussion - sometimes yes. We do allow students to leave instruments on the Bandroom shelves overnight, but not on weekends. Minimally, students are expected to take their instruments home every weekend and twice during weekdays to practice. Some students take their instrument home everyday. Practice rooms are available after school, before school and during study hall time for students who wish to practice during the school day.
3.) When are the Band Concerts?
Typically there is at least one concert per trimester during the school year. Students are expected to "dress up" for this event - and in some cases may require a "special" uniform (check with your Band Director for specific information). Student report time is 30 minutes prior to the start of the concert. All concerts occur in the RHS Performing Arts Center. The concert is required attendance, and is a portion of their Trimester grade in Band. See the BAND CALENDAR for a complete listing on all concerts.
4.) How does the band lesson program work?
Band Lessons are the foundation of the RHS Band program. Lessons are an opportunity for each student to receive individual help in developing individual instrumental music skills, knowledge and understanding. Band class is an opportunity for you to apply those skills in an ensemble setting. Practicing is your homework for Band. You are responsible for being able to perform your assigned lesson material and Band music to the best of your abilities. You decide how much practicing is necessary for you to accomplish this and earn the grade you want.
A.) Band Lesson Frequency
All Band students are scheduled for a lesson that is will be held during their band rehearsal class. Lessons may vary from three to four a trimester depending on the calendar and other performance factors.
B.) Make-up lessons
If a student misses a lesson (for whatever reason) it is the student's responsibility to make-up that lesson as soon as possible (within one week of the absence) by simply signing your name to a new lesson appointment/time on your lesson instructors schedule (posted in the Bandroom). Students may not receive more than two lessons in one week. In the case of an unexcused absence, lessons will be made up at the discretion of the instructor.
C.) Communication of student progress in Band
A "Grade Sheet" record is located inside the lesson book of each student stating the date the lesson occurred, assignments and grades for each lesson attended. This is the primary indicator of student progress in Band.
D.) Students are responsible for purchasing lesson books.
These may be purchased through the RHS Band Office, make checks payable to Rosemount High School.
STUDENT LESSON ATTENDANCE RESPONSIBILITY:
Be on time for your lesson and return directly to class after the lesson. No loitering in the halls or no other stops along the way back to class! Please do not abuse this privilege to attend lessons!
Be responsible. The privilege of being released from class to attend a music lesson carries with it the responsibility to communicate effectively with your teachers.
5.) How do you grade in band?
Rosemount HS Band Grading Policy
All Band members are expected to participate in four lessons per Trimester. Each lesson is assessed/graded based on the quality of the student's performance in that lesson, which is a direct result of adequate and quality preparation/practice at home. Regular and correct practice (as taught in the band lessons) is the "homework" for successful band lessons that earn good grades! Band lessons are equivalent to "weekly quizzes" that occur in all other academic classes. At RHS, we do not require a "set amount" of practice time each day, and there are no "practice cards" to complete. However, we highly encourage daily practice! A student will improve their musical abilities significantly more by practicing a little each day instead of practicing for a longer period of time once or twice a week. Much of practicing involves the building up of muscle memory and if we leave that training for even a few days the muscles will "forget" what they learned. As a result, music practice cannot be "crammed" like a person might do for a test. Success in music can only be achieved through the repetitions that a daily practice routine brings!! Regular consistent practice insures musical growth, successful lessons and a good grade in Band!
QUALITY REGULAR PRACTICE = QUALITY LESSONS = QUALITY GRADE IN BAND!!!
Attends class on time, with instrument & music, actively participating, no deductions for inappropriate behavior or tardiness.
Participation in all required Concerts, and includes attendance/participation at three (3) Pep Band events (Freshman) during Trimester-2.
Recordings, Tests, quizzes SmartMusic Projects and/or Auditions. Scale auditions (required of all Band members) will occur near the end of Trimester 1, and will serve as the final exam and chair placement in each section.
6.) Can a freshman earn a varsity letter in band?
Yes, a Freshman student can earn a varsity letter in band if they participate in the two primary Band co-curricular activities: Marching Band & Pep Band. Students earn a letter by participating in co-curricular band activities such as Marching Band & Winter Pep Band (the two primary activities for accumulating letter points in Band) and Jazz Bands, Percussion Ensembles, Brass Ensembles, Woodwind Ensembles, etc. A separate sheet detailing requirements to earn a letter in band will be distributed to students during the first Trimester. Varsity Letter Point Accumulation Form
7.) When do the jazz ensembles and other small ensembles meet?
All jazz ensembles and other small ensembles meet outside of the school day. Most of our jazz bands meet on weekdays after school. After school rehearsals (2:30-5:30 PM) work well for most groups. We make every attempt to schedule these groups based on the "schedule" feedback we receive from the student participants. We have three or four jazz bands open to anyone who has an interest in participating! We are especially interested in finding bass, piano and guitar players who read music and want to play in a jazz band! All co-curricular ensembles begin in early December and end in late March. These groups have proven to be very popular and fun for students of all ages and abilities!
8.) What do we have to buy?
Expenses in curricular Band classes are relatively small. Students must purchase a lesson book ($7-$15), reeds ($2-$8), and/or other replacement items such as drum sticks, percussion mallets, saxophone neck strap, ligature, etc. Many of these items are available from the RHS Band Office (at significantly discounted prices!), and all checks should be made payable to: RHS Band. Sometimes a lesson teacher may recommend a better mouthpiece ($25-$100) for advancing and/or serious students. Advanced students often consider purchasing a better instrument. Please consult your student's lesson teacher before purchasing a new instrument for helpful recommendations and information. See our website page INSTRUMENT UPGRADES for specific information and recommendations regarding suggested instrument (and mouthpiece and accessories) upgrades.
9.) How do we contact the Band Staff?
Because most of their time involves teaching students, E-Mail is the primary and most effective way to communicate with the Band Directors:
Leon Sieve: firstname.lastname@example.org
Bojan Hoover: email@example.com
Taylor Eliason: firstname.lastname@example.org
Scott Palmer: email@example.com
The Band Office direct dial phone number is (651)423-7552.
10.) How do I join Marching Band?
Please visit our Marching Band page of the site to find out all information regarding marching band.
11.) RHS Band Website
Visit the RHS Band website for lots of information including: Band Handbook, Lettering Information, Year-long Band Calendar and much more. rosemountband.com
12.) RHS Band TRIPS
The Rosemount Bands offer an extended domestic or international performance trip every three years. This typically occurs during Spring Break. The Marching Band typically participates in at least one or two overnight weekend trips during the Fall Marching Band season.
Past Spring Break trip destinations include:
2004 Honolulu, Hawaii
2007 Beijing & Shanghai, China
2010 Honolulu, Hawaii
2013 Puerto Rico
13.) INSTRUMENT UPGRADES
Check out our instrument upgrades page under the "Resources" section.