Welcome to Merriam Park Elementary Bands!

Band Updates


We are off and running in both 5th and 6th grade now! Here are a few updates to keep you in the loop on what we’re doing over the next few weeks:

Fifth Grade:

  • We are using instruments! If you are still working on getting yours, just contact me so I know where you are in that process. If you have any difficulties with this, contact me ASAP.
  • Students should have their instrument, book, and pencil at EVERY rehearsal. This is part of their grade!
  • For the next two band rehearsals at your respective schools, I will meet with smaller, like instrument groups, to teach kids the proper way to assemble, clean, maintain, and make a good tone on their instruments. The schedule below will indicate which kids will meet on which days:
    • East Antioch/Rushton:
      • Thursday, September 7—Woodwinds
      • Tuesday, September 12—Brass/Percussion
    • Santa Fe Trail:
      • Friday, September 8—Woodwinds
      • Tuesday, September 12—Brass/Percussion
    • Nieman/Merriam Park:
      • Monday, September 11—Woodwinds
      • Wednesday, September 13—Brass/Percussion
  • 5th grade students should practice 20 minutes a night, 4-5 days a week. This is VERY important, since our class time is very limited. Building endurance on the instrument and producing a consistent tone can only be achieved with practice–in manageable chunks–spread over several days a week. Please encourage your student to practice!
  • Students should be practicing on their mouthpieces this week! Try timing them to see how long they can hold a tone, and have your brass players play you a “siren”. Expect to hear some “interesting” noises . . . 🙂


Sixth Grade:

  • We are working to build our endurance back up, which means students MUST PRACTICE AT HOME! 6th graders should practice for 30 minutes, 4-5 days a week.
  • Our goal is to be caught up to where we finished up in the book last year (somewhere between line #60-70) by the end of September. We should be starting new material first thing in October, if not before that!
  • Look for practice assignments on the band website (www.smnorthbands.org). Click on your school on the elementary drop down menu, and look for the “Sixth Grade Practice and Homework Assignments” button on the right side of your school’s page.

We are really off to a great start, and I’m looking forward to a fantastic year with these kids.




Welcome back! Summer has flown by, but that’s okay because that means it’s BAND TIME!

We will begin our normal rehearsal schedule next week, starting on Tuesday, August 22nd. Rehearsal schedules are as follows:


Merriam Park: M/W 2:00-2:30

Nieman: M/W 10:00-10:30

East Antioch: T/Th 12:00-12:30

Ruston: T/Th 1:45-2:15

Santa Fe Trail: T/F 10:00-10:30


Please remember to bring ALL necessary materials to class: Instrument, book, pencil, reeds, valve oil, cork grease, etc.

Feel free to contact me if you have any questions ([email protected]). I’m looking forward to seeing you all again!


No Band This Week

I had an unfortunate incident involving a set of stairs and a poorly placed spray bottle which resulted in a broken foot. I am able to get around for the most part, but I will not be having band the first week back to school in order to give my foot a bit of time to heal and become less painful before I begin hauling equipment from school to school and setting up and tearing down classrooms. I plan to begin classes this coming Monday.
Hope you all had a great break! Or maybe I should say vacation. The word “break” bears a lot of negative feelings for me at present 🙂

Concert December 7th!

I wanted to remind you all that we have our first band concert this coming Wednesday, December 7th, at 6:30 PM. Students need to be at the school, with their instruments and books ready to go by 6:10. Students should wear nice school clothes. Dresses, skirts, slacks, sweaters, button downs, etc. are all preferable to jeans and t-shirts, but please do not feel that you need to go out and buy something new for the concert. Holiday attire is also welcome!
These kids are so excited . . . and so am I! Looking forward to see you all on December 7th.

Honor Band Starts Today!

I just wanted to post a reminder that 6th grade honor band starts today. I’m looking forward to seeing all your kids this afternoon for our first rehearsal. We will begin at 3:45, and conclude at 4:45. Students must be picked up from rehearsal no later than 5:00 PM.
Please drop your students off, and pick them up, at the band room door, which is door #6, off the west parking lot of the school. I will be there as students are arriving, so if they’re a little early, it’s fine.
Can’t wait to get these kids rolling!