Wow... What a whirlwind of performances and such the last six weeks. As we head out of one season and into another, I thought I would keep you up to speed on how things work for the next few months.
First of all, we still have two regular-season football games - this Friday and next. Both of those games will be covered by the track band. If your son or daughter has had an absence due to illness, etc., this would be a great opportunity to make it up.
Following the end of the season, the Dux will be in the MHSAA playoffs again, with the first game being on Halloween; I haven't yet decided what we are going to do with that game yet, but am leaning toward track band again. On November 7 the fall production of Zeeland High Players will be in session, so that week will need to be a quiet one in the band room. We have historically used the track band that weekend as well. As I said, I will keep everyone posted as those dates get closer.
This week we will be making some transitions during class as well. Today we begin with some general housekeeping and cleaning; the carpets were cleaned over the weekend, and today we will put a few things away until they 're needed again as well as making sure uniforms, instruments, etc. are where they belong at all times. (This can be very difficult with 200 students; even when things are where they belong the room can look very cluttered. I try to maintain my composure...)
I am also planning a "Freshman Day" this week, in which we do a lunch period switch so I can see the freshmen by themselves. I think I have a pretty good handle on who everyone is, but I will admit that this is the hardest part of my job - getting to know over 60 new people while getting 200 to do 10-12 performances! They get thrown to the lions, so to speak, and I don't get a chance to really meet everyone until we come inside for concert stuff.
Speaking of the split lunch period, here's how that works:
During the remainder of first semester the large 4th hour class is split into two bands - Concert and Symphonic. The time block that includes lunch and 4th hour is split, so that while one group is at lunch the other is at class. Last year we alternated days with this plan and it worked very well. I will let the students know how this works; you don't need all of the details!
Once first semester is done, those two bands split to different hours - Symphonic Band remains 4th hour and Concert Band becomes 3rd hour. Your children's schedules already reflect this.
More on "sit-down" band in a future post. For now, let's all take some time to breathe, relax, and enjoy some time without the pressure of performances for a while!