Band 6

Band 6

Course Title: Band 6 

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Course Description

Band 6 is a beginning level course course in which students select and learn the foundations of playing a concert band instrument in the woodwind, brass, or percussion family. No prior experience is necessary, but the ability to read written musical pitch and rhythm will greatly aid students, as these are crucial skills for success. 

Students wishing to study percussion will be learning multiple instruments and will be most successful with prior experience. At least two years of piano experience is highly encouraged for students interested in percussion. Students in the first year of study focus on developing the specific performing skills needed for their chosen instrument. Music literacy, ear training, composition, and improvisation are also integral aspects of the course. 

Students work heavily with the concert key signatures of Bb and Eb major. Meters used include 4/4, 3/4, and 2/4. Rhythms studied extensively by the entire band include whole notes, half notes, quarter notes, eighth notes and their corresponding rests. Also included are dotted quarter notes and tied rhythms. Percussion students will also focus on sixteenth notes and rests in various combinations. Expression items covered include tonguing and slurring articulations, percussion sticking patterns, accents, dynamic levels of p, mp, mf, and f, as well as crescendo and decrescendo. The music performed is often up to a level 1 on a 1-5 difficulty scale. The band generally performs three concerts per school year in order to showcase their learning.

Power Standards

  1. Student is able to apply developing knowledge of instrumental techniques and musical literacy, integrating skills into individual and ensemble performance.
  2. Student is able to reflect on, respond to, and evaluate music.
  3. Student is able to create music that demonstrates understanding.

Course Outline

Apply developing knowledge of instrumental techniques and musical literacy, integrating skills into individual and ensemble performance

Guiding Questions Learning Objectives 
  • What skills does it take to make a beautiful sound on your instrument?
  • What does it mean to read music?
  • How can musicians improve their ability to read music?
  • How do you transfer the knowledge gained in the classroom into improved skill on your instrument?
  • How do musicians interpret and mark their music to help them in performance?
  • How do musicians work together successfully in an ensemble?
  • Produce a characteristic tone on instrument
  • Demonstrate functional pitch and rhythmic literacy
  • Perform in an ensemble with understanding of student’s changing musical roles
Assessments: Playing quizzes and tests, informal observations, performances

Reflect on, respond to, and evaluate music

Guiding Questions Learning Objectives 
  • What makes each piece of music unique?
  • What specific vocabulary do musicians use?
  • How do musicians interpret a composition?
  • How can musicians give themselves constructive feedback?
  • How do musicians provide constructive feedback to other musicians to help expand their understanding?
  • Analyze musical elements (such as pitch, rhythm, dynamics, form, and function).
  • Evaluate their own performance, the ensemble’s performance, and the performance of others.
Assessments: Listening examples, class discussions, vocabulary tests, verbal and written performance evaluation, self-reflection

 Create music that demonstrates understanding

Guiding Questions Learning Objectives 
  • How do composers communicate their thoughts to the performer using language of music?
  • How do composers create new and unique music?
  • How do performers improvise?
  • Communicate musical understanding through composition
  • Show understanding of harmonies through improvisation
Assessments: Written musical composition projects, class and individual improvisation activities

Career and Life Skills
Social and Cross Cultural

The student respects and contributes to the diverse learning community by:

  • Honoring the ideas and opinions of others and
  • Interacting effectively and appropriately with others
Productivity and Accountability

The student takes ownership of work and actions by:

  • Completing assignments on time
  • Arriving prepared and on time
  • Managing time
Initiative and Self Direction

The student demonstrates independence by:

  • Self-advocating for assistance or resources
  • Persevering through rigorous/challenging tasks
  • Utilizing feedback