Patrick Marsh Middle School Band

First Week Information (Aug 23-27, 2021)

Masking Order Update

We wanted to reach out to you with new updates that impact our Sun Prairie band students based on the new public health order 17 requiring masks indoors from Public Health Madison & Dane County (PHMDC). Public health order 17 says that “every individual, age two (2) and older, shall wear a face covering when in any enclosed space open to the public.” While there are exemptions for activities like eating and drinking, public health order 17 has not provided an exemption for playing wind instruments indoors such as the previous public health order 16 which included an exemption for wind playing using bell covers.

Until this order was released, we were prepared to conduct band safely indoors following mitigation guidelines highlighted by a study of aerosols at the University of Colorado. These measures included the use of slitted masks and fabric covers on the bell of the instrument. The Sun Prairie Area School District believes strongly in this comprehensive research study on responsible and appropriate mitigation strategies for band classes to take place safely indoors. We are hopeful that Public Health Madison & Dane County will restore an exemption to play instruments indoors. However, we do not know what kind of timeline will be needed. The current public health order will be active for 28 days.

Because of this, we will be welcoming your students into our band classroom starting next week, but we will hold band class and lessons outside when playing. Playing as a band will be our highest priority. The Sun Prairie Band Department is recognized for its energy and dedication to students and music and all of that energy and dedication will be poured into making band fantastic this fall.

First Week Plan For 6th and 7th Graders

Monday (Day 1) Aug 23 - No instruments needed.

Tuesday (Day 2) Aug 24 - No instruments needed.

Wednesday (Day 1) Aug 25 - Bring Instruments and music.

Thursday (Day 2) Aug 26 - Bring Instruments and music.

Friday (Day 1) Aug 27 - Bring Instruments and music.

Haven't Started On Your Instrument Yet?

We have a number of 6th graders and a few brand new 7th graders who have not started on their instrument. For these folks we have a class called Fall Band Blastoff. It takes place after school from 3-4 pm at Patrick Marsh on August 24-26 (Tue-Thur).

Please plan to attend these classes so we can get you started!

What Will I Need In Band?

1. Your band instrument in good playing condition. You may be renting already from Ward Brodt, own an instrument or using a school instrument. The key is to make sure it is working properly!

2. A pencil - keep one in band folder or instrument case.

3. Warm-ups and Beyond book for 6th Graders. 7th grade will use a variety of warm-ups that Mr. Gleason will give you.

4. Blue/Green Lesson Book "Student Instrumental Course" Book 1. Some 7th graders may have completed this book or be close to finishing it. The next book to get is "Student Instrumental Course" Book 2 (for your instrument). Percussionists will use "Alfred Snare Drum Book" and the "5 Minute Drill Book"

5. Band Uniform - typically we have our families purchase a band shirt that is worn at concerts. As a department, we made the decision to NOT require the purchase of a shirt this year due to next year's boundary changes and grade level shifts. We will communicate a concert dress preference for this year in the near future.

6. Clarinet and Saxophone musicians make sure you have at least 6 good reeds to start the year.

7. Brass players should have valve oil and slide grease.

8. Percussionists should make sure they have all of the necessary mallets and sticks needed for this year. Consult the percussion equipment chart on the band website ( for more information. Make sure your sticks/mallets and clearly labeled with your name and keep them in a stick bag.

How Can I Find More Information?

Here is a link to our Band Website ( this is a great place to look if you ever have questions. We try to keep it updated with everything you would need.

About The Band Program

Our Philosophy

We believe that an education in music and the arts is vitally important to all children. Students in band will not only learn the skill needed to perform an instrument, but they will also learn about life through music (knowledge) and their feelings/ideas/concepts about it (affect). We believe in educating in this comprehensive approach. Students will be assessed based on the standards below. The goal is to have the students become self-directed, self-assessing, life-long learners who value the sense of being part of something larger than themselves. We will work with students to set goals, gather evidence of growth, evaluate the data, and formulate a plan for continued progress. We will work hard to help your child to achieve success in learning through band.

Sun Prairie Band Mission Statement: “Move beyond the notes to cultivate a life long passion and drive for creativity, curiosity, and community through a vision of students as accomplished learners and evolving musicians in pursuit of artistry

Our Curriculum

1. Instrumental Skills -Demonstrates appropriate skills and techniques (individual/lessons)

2. Ensemble Skills - Demonstrates appropriate skills and techniques (group/ensemble)

3. Building Myelin - Demonstrates goal-oriented practice, practice strategies, and self-evaluation.

4. Literacy – Read and notate music

5. Connections - Demonstrate connections between art, cultures, history, community, and self.

6. Analysis and Evaluation - Respond to music through analysis and evaluation

7. Imagination, Creativity, Composition, Improvisation and Innovation – Develop the powerful skills of divergent thinking.

School Lesson Procedures

1. Students will be scheduled for lessons during the first week of classes. Lessons will meet on the same day throughout the year.

2. Each lesson grade will be determined based on the following: Timeliness, Materials, Assignment Completion. (See “Band Lesson Rubric”)

3. Students are responsible for lesson attendance. Your lesson teacher will not come and get you from class.

4. If you miss a lesson you need to make up the lesson before your next scheduled lesson.

5. Students who are absent on their scheduled lesson day may make up that lesson at a mutually convenient time (before or after school) within one week of the date of the missed lesson.

6. Students who have prearranged absences (vacations, etc.) will be allowed to make up their lesson before or after their planned absence. Please see your lesson teacher to schedule these lessons.

7. Students who are absent on a planned fieldtrip need not make up their lesson. If a student desires to make up the lesson, they make contact the lesson teacher.

8. Attached is more information about our Sun Prairie Booster Band Lesson Academy. A year of lessons would make a GREAT gift idea (and doesn’t need batteries!). It truly is a gift that keeps giving!

Upcoming Dates

August 24-26- Fall Blastoff Classes 3-4:00 PM

August 31- 6th Brass Team Building 3-4:00 PM

September 1 6th Woodwind/Percussion Team Building 3-4:00 PM

October 5- Fall Band Concert 6:30 PM (6th grade) 7:30 PM (7th Grade)

October 7- 7th Grade Band Clinic at UW-Eau Claire

Patrick Marsh Middle School Bands

“Move beyond the notes to cultivate a life long passion and drive for creativity, curiosity, and community through a vision of students as accomplished learners and evolving musicians in pursuit of artistry