Hello, parents and students! After a VERY long hiatus, we are making plans for the KMS Band for the 2020-2021 year. Our foremost priority is the social/emotional wellbeing of the students. As such, Ms. Bray and I plan to spend a few days just catching up with the students and giving them the opportunity to reconnect with their peers and the directors. To be honest, Ms. Bray and I need that as much as the students do. We have missed them, terribly.
Once the reunion is finished, students who rent school-owned instruments will be assigned their horns, and we will begin the process of assessing the students’ ability levels and developing an instructional plan for going forward. You should know, however, that our instructional model is going to look quite different from years past. Due to the risk of spreading the CoVid-19 virus through the playing of instruments in class, we will be teaching a “reverse” classroom model.
In this model, students will receive demonstrations of assigned material from the instructors, they will go home, practice, and submit recordings of the material via an online platform (that we will introduce shortly.) As you can see, this is going to require daily, at-home practice and recording. We are asking that parents be insistent that their children practice and record their work, as it will be a part of their grade. Don’t worry, students will have unlimited submissions of playing tests and quizzes for each 9 weeks. Ms. Bray and I are aware that this is going to be a much slower instructional process, but feel it necessary in order to minimize the risk of CoVid-19 transmission in class.
During face-to-face instruction (until we are declared situation: GREEN by Knox County Schools), we will be focusing on critical listening, rhythmic, and theory skills. All classes will have a daily listening assignment that will have an accompanying “listening journal” entry that must be completed. All students will be issued an individual pair of drum sticks that they will use in class for rhythmic studies. Finally, students will be given various paper and online assignments to develop their knowledge of “music theory” (think grammar in English).
I assure you that we will be back to normal instruction just as soon as KCS gives “Green” status. Until then, Ms. Bray and I are asking for a great deal of your patience as we attempt to cobble together a long-term curriculum that balances both the educational and the safety needs of the students and staff.
It’s going to be different, but it’s still going to be BAND!
As always, please feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns.
Ms. Bray and Mr. Bowling