Blanchard MS Bands

April 2016 Newsletter

Here comes April!

There are many things happening during this time of year, for band and for many other classes and activities. Please help your student stay organized and on top of things so all can run smoothly!

Also, please check out the calendar, as it has been updated to reflect all info for spring and summer band. We apologize for the late info; we were waiting for the official school calendar before we published ours.

Calendar of Upcoming Events (always available on Charms!)

  • April 6th, Drumline clinic; @HS band room; 3:30-5:00pm (every Wednesday)
  • April 9th, Bowl-a-thon @The Alley; 12-2pm
  • April 14th, Mandatory Incoming Freshman meeting @HS band room; 7:00pm
  • April 22nd, No school
  • April 26th, Final Band Booster meeting of the year @HS Band room; 7:00pm
  • April 29th, Blanchard MS Band Festival (6th grade band)
  • April 29th, No school
  • April 30th, 89er Day Parade (7th & 8th grade band)
  • May 6th, No school
  • May 9th, MS Spring Concert @HS gymnasium; 7:00pm
  • May 12th, HS Spring Concert @Catlett Music Center, Univ. of Oklahoma; 7:00pm
  • May 13th, No school
  • May 18th, Last day of school

All dates from here down are for incoming freshmen (current 8th grade students)

  • May 19th & 20th, Band Spring Training Days; 9:00am-3:00pm
  • July 25th-29th, Summer Band; 2:00pm-10:00pm
  • August 1st-5th, Summer Band' 2:00pm-10:00pm
  • August 8th, Evening rehearsal; 6:30-9:00pm
  • August 9th, Evening rehearsal; 6:30-8:00pm
  • August 9th, Parent Performance; 8:00pm
  • August 11th, First day of school!

Congrats 7th & 8th grade

We want to give a big shoutout to the 7th and 8th grade band. After preparing for a few months for pre-district contest. The students went to pre-district and received positive and constructive comments. After they received their comments they went back to work for two weeks. They worked extremely hard and were ready for their District Performance. Not only did they have one of the best performances of the year but they earned straight superiors on stage and a superior in sightreading. The 7th and 8th grade band earned the Outstanding Achievement Award. These young students have done a phenomenal job preparing for contest this year! Congratulations to the 7th and 8th grade band, we are extremely proud of you!
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Check Charms to make sure your student's account is in good financial standing. If your student checked out breakfast tickets or coupon books and haven't sold them or turned them in, there is a negative charge to the account.

89er Day Parade Info

7th & 8th grade band parents, we are gearing up for the 89er Day parade in Norman on April 30th. We will have a full schedule out to you this week. Everyone is encouraged to come out and see our band march down Main St. in Norman!

Thank you for having your students prepared in class with appropriate athletic footwear. We'll start going outside this week. Bringing water to class is a great idea along with a hat or sunglasses if it will help. Encourage lots of water drinking so everyone is hydrated!

Mandatory Incoming Freshman Meeting

On Thursday, April 14th at 7pm we will host our incoming freshmen and their parents at the HS band room to go over everything that HS band entails. The jump from MS to HS comes with a learning curve and we try to make that curve a little less steep and a lot more manageable. We will have the 8th graders go in the choir room with current HS students to ask questions and talk about what HS is all about. The directors will be with the parents and talk about lots of logistical and financial concerns. This is a mandatory meeting so if you cannot attend please contact a director to set up a private meeting. If your student is on the fence about band or if you have any concerns, this is a great place to get questions answered and see if this is the right place for your student - we think it is!

Summer Band Information - Important!

Incoming freshman parents! It's already time to look forward to next year! Spring training and summer band are required (dates on the calendar above) if students want a guaranteed spot in the field show. Each student absence will be dealt with on an individual basis. The sooner we know of any absences, the better we can prepare and try and juggle them, so please check your calendar and let us know ASAP of any issues. From here on out, avoid scheduling anything for your student on spring and summer band dates.

If a student has to miss 4 or more days of summer band for any reason, he/she will automatically be made an alternate.

The schedule will be the same as last year, with times running from 2:00pm-10:00pm with a dinner break from 5:30-6:30pm.

Maydaze Garage Sale

Start tucking away your donations for the Band's annual Garage Sale! Set aside any items you don't want or need anymore so they're waiting for us! It is very helpful if you can price your items or sort them into bags that have prices marked on them. We will be announcing drop off info soon so you won't have to store everything at home. Thank you for your support!

Background checks for volunteers

Please remember that if you didn't fill out your form with Brenda at uniform checkout and get her a copy of your driver's license, you'll need to get that done prior to volunteering. The cost of the background check is $12.50 and is required if you want to work directly with our students. For more information, contact Brenda at

MS Band Students of the Month!

Our Blanchard MS Band Students of the month for April are Sydney Semmler, Taylor Swaner, William Griffin, Asa Cook, MacKenzie Heeke, Gracy Roe, Allie Kiger, & Braden Fleck:
  • Sydney is in the percussion section in the 7th grade. Sydney is a wonderful musician and inspires the other 7th graders around her. Being in the 7th and 8th grade band is a challenge for the 7th graders because they are competing against 8th graders who have one more year of experience. Sydney does not let that fact phase her, she is sitting at the top of the section with the 8th graders. She is one of the sweetest people you would ever meet and never has anything negative to say about anyone. Keep rocking it, Sydney!
  • Taylor is a clarinet player in the 8th grade. Taylor has sat in top of the section for this year and last year. Taylor always had the potential to be first chair but could never quite get over the hump. For her last chair test (the most challenging test of the year) she earned first chair. Taylor is a very talented young lady, she did this by herself and it has helped her gain some confidence. Taylor is very excited to be going to the high school band. Taylor, continue to be a strong confident young lady!
  • William is a 6th grade trombone player who has always practiced a lot and pushed himself to do his best. He studies with a trombone player at his church and learns new things all the time. The best part about William is that he's willing to help the others in his section learn as well. He prints off music for Star Wars and the Star Spangled Banner and practices them before class with his friends. It's always cool to hear him play something that he's prepared on his own. Keep up the hard work, and keep rocking, William!
  • Asa is a clarinet player in the 6th grade who has worked incredibly hard all year long. He has struggled in the past but has never given up and it paid off, as he is sitting in the top of his section and doing awesome! He is always receptive when we give him feedback and you can see the results of his dedication. There are few students who you will find that will work as hard as this young man has this year. Keep doing what you're doing, keep striving for your best, and you will continue to soar, Asa!
  • MacKenzie plays the trumpet in the 5th grade and is an incredible listener. She always does what is asked of her and does it continuously. She is quiet in class, though she always is willing to volunteer to play or answer questions. On her tests she consistently scores in the top of her section and her hard work and practice are evident. She has a great attitude and is always excited to be in class. We're so proud of MacKenzie and her bright future in band!
  • Gracy is also a trumpet player in the 5th grade has is an outstanding student. In our last counting competition she beat out all the other brass and percussion students for top honors. She is a fine trumpet player and works very hard at home on honing her skills. As a dedicated musician should, she regularly scores top marks on her chair tests and sits at the top of the section. Beyond all this, Gracy always has something positive to say and her energy is contagious in the classroom. Keep up the great work, Gracy!
  • Allie is a clarinet player in the 5th grade. Allie has come a long way on the clarinet, she struggled at the very beginning of the year. Allie never got frustrated or gave up. With her can-do attitude she has reached a new level of potential and continues to push her self. Along with her willingness to improve, she also has one of the most positive attitudes in the 5th grade band. Allie is nice to everyone she meets and sits next to. Allie, keep making the world shine with your smile!
  • Braden is a clarinet player in the 5th grade. Braden is a go-getter and has an excitement when he is in band. Due to his desire to improve, he is sitting at the top of the section, which is not an easy feat. The clarinet section totals 18 musicians. Braden also has a very unique sense of humor and always makes the class laugh. He cannot wait to continue through band and to advance his knowledge of music. Braden’s love of knowledge is contagious and spreads through the clarinet section. Braden, keep being a boss!

How to get credit for your monthly newsletter grade! Due by Tuesday, April 26th!

The purpose of the monthly newsletter is to make sure that students and parents are all on the same page and know about all band activities. To get credit, a parent needs to send an email to the Blanchard Band directors that has the following info: student name, grade, parent name, and that the newsletter has been read. This earns you 100%! If you don't have the ability to email, please have your student get a hard copy from a director and it can be signed and returned for the same grade.

Remember, newsletters are only accepted during the month of the newsletter. Once the month has passed, that newsletter can no longer be submitted.

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