Junior High Band
Survival Tips

Require Reading Material

On test days the students were required to bring a book to read while the other students were tested. At the beginning of class they held up their books to show me they were prepared. Although I asked them to bring a book they really wanted to read (something they were already reading or hoped to read) they often held up textbooks or nothing at all. If they didn’t have a book they were marked unprepared, which hurt their citizenship grade. I subscribed to a number of music education magazines. An unprepared student was allowed one trip to the magazine rack. Occasionally during the test I would have to remind the students to read, but it was a lot better than having nothing for them to do.

Video Disclaimer

The attached videos are not perfect examples of how each tune should be played. They are recordings of junior high students, some of whom have had their instruments for only a few months. Also, they are not professional recordings. They were taken by band parents using home equipment and naturally focusing on their own children.

I include them for two reasons: (1) To give you an idea of what the arrangements are like, and (2) To illustrate the kind of performance you can expect from your junior high students.