5th Grade Information
Intermediate band is a great way to not only learn how to play an instrument but to also make great friends and be a part of a winning organization. Everyone in our band program starts off in one of our beginner band classes where they learn the very basics of both their particular instrument as well as understanding how to read and comprehend music.
It is more than okay if you have never played an instrument or read music before joining the band!
If you are currently in 5th grade, make sure you put BAND as your 1st elective choice on your choice sheet for 6th grade.
In order to be part of our band and a Future Member of the Clear Brook Band & Clear Lake Band, band must begin in the 6th-grade year.
Each spring, we host an instrument selection day for our incoming band students. This is an opportunity to meet the band directors, some of our private lesson teachers, and to see what your instrument options are! Here we will be able to see which instrument you enjoy the most and also which is best suited for you. Once you are placed on an instrument, we will enroll you in the class and give you the materials list of what you will need for the class. Students are expected to have all materials on the first day of school; we recommend doing this as soon as possible!
Here is some general information about the band program that might help answer some of your questions:
No prior musical experience is necessary.
There is no outside of school commitments in 6th grade.
Students can be in band AND athletics
There are 2-3 concerts a year
Classes meet daily and are grouped by like instruments.
Westbrook students* who plan to be in Pre-AP ELA, you get TWO elective choices.
*Students who are not enrolled in the WAVE Program
As your child progresses through our program to a 7th and 8th-grade performing band, they will also get to perform in many concerts, compete in full band contests as well as individual competitions, and go on fun and exciting trips. Overall, band is a great learning experience and better yet, it is a lot of fun!
1. Playing a musical instrument is fun!
Sure it can be a lot of hard work but there is no denying playing an instrument is fun. Once you get better at it, opportunities will arise for you to share your newly learned skill with your family and friends. Who knows, you may also consider playing professionally in the future. Playing a musical instrument opens up a lot of good possibilities that will surely enrich your life.
2. Playing a musical instrument makes you smarter
Many studies have been conducted on the effects of music to the brain. Scientists say that children who are exposed to music, or those who play an instrument, do better in school than those who don't. Recent research suggests exposure to music may benefit a child's reading age, IQ and the development of certain parts of the brain. Adults can benefit from learning to play an instrument too because it helps the mind to be alert and active eventually helping to sharpen the memory.
3. Sense of achievement
If you're a beginner learning to play your first piece, it can be frustrating. But once you've mastered it, the satisfaction you'll feel is priceless. Never mind if it's just a simple piece, believe me you'll never forget the first piece you've mastered. You are one more step closer to achieving your goal and that is certainly something to be proud of.
4. It teaches discipline
Learning to play an instrument is like learning to speak another language and it can be challenging at times. One of the qualities musicians possess is discipline. You have to be disciplined in order to master playing your instrument. You have to set time each day to practice, practice and practice some more.
5. Playing a musical instrument relieves stress
We all have days when we are so stressed out and we just want to take a break from it all. Have you ever noticed that when you hear soft, soothing music you feel more relaxed? Playing an instrument can do that and more, especially if you're the one playing. Music is one of life's simple joys; it helps calm the mind.
Also, there's a significant amount of research to suggest that arts education prepares students to become more successful participants in the workforce.
Here are a few links to some articles/studies:
Music Students Don't Just Learn Notes (One-page PDF championing the value of music education, including a statement from U.S. Secretary of Education John B. King Jr.)
Top 10 Skills Children Learn from the Arts (Washington Post 2013 article outlining skills learned through arts education essential for success in academia and life.)
Top 10 Skills Children Learn from the Arts (One-page PDF of key points in the Washington Post 2013 article linked above, published in September 2015 Southwestern Musician.Contact TMEA if you need a high-resolution ver.)
STEM Vs. STEAM (One-pager with multiple sources championing the integration of the arts into the STEM curriculum.)
The Benefits of Music Education (An Overview of Current Neuroscience Research as published by The Royal Conservatory)
All-State SAT Results (All-State musicians' scores compared to state and national averages)
National SAT Results (Students who study music consistently score higher than those without this study)
Learning, Arts, & The Brain (Summary of Dana Foundation Consortium report correlating arts study and improved cognition)
Creativity in 21st Century Workforce Preparation (Summary of 2009 Senate/House Dialogue with Dan Pink and other industry leaders)
Hearing the Music, Honing the Mind (November 2010 Scientific American article supporting music in the school because of its affect on the brain)
Voices in the Arts(2010 College Board publication offering a variety of perspectives on the importance of arts in education)
Opting for Creativity (2008 Newsweek Article on China's academic evolution to inspire creativity in school)
And then there's this!
That's right! A symphony orchestra comprised mostly of DOCTORS and health care professionals who just happen to play instruments!
Fun Fact: Mr. Andrada performs with this orchestra!!