Liberty Middle School Bands 

5225 Salem Road 
Covington, GA 30016 
(678) 625-6617 ext. 5827

Liberty Middle School Band Hand Book and Syllabus 

Liberty Middle School Bands 
Band Director Mr. Thomas Luke
Handbook 2015-2016


Basic Guidelines

· Be respectful of yourself and others. 
· No food, drink, or gum in the band room at any time. 
· Use the restroom and visit the water fountain before class begins. 
· Be on time to class. 
· Be prepared (instrument, music, pencil, and agenda). Your agenda is where the director signs Hall passes if you have to leave the room.

Classroom & Rehearsal Procedures

1. Enter the classroom quietly.

2. Students will have 3 minutes to assemble their instruments and be seated to begin class.

3. To be fully prepared for class, students must have their instrument (in its entirety), a pencil, and band folder with method book, band handouts, and sheet music.

4. Read the whiteboard for Agenda items.

5. Here are the basic guidelines for a successful rehearsal:

(a) Always pay attention to the director

(b) Always exhibit proper posture: sit up straight – on the front part of your chair, both feet on floor

(c) Always exhibit proper hand position for your instrument

(d) Always have a pencil in class to mark music or complete assignments as instructed by the director

(e) Check the level of your music stand – the director needs to see your eyes at all times

(f) When director’s hands are up, instrument is in PLAYING position. When director’s hands are down, the instrument is down in REST position.

(g) When the director is working with a particular student or section, everyone else is required to engage in silent practice on a part in the music that needs their attention.

(h) Play instrument only when directed. Stop or cut off AS SOON AS THE DIRECTOR STOPS. When the director stops, LISTEN for instructions!

(i) When you need to ask a question, raise your hand and wait to be called upon before speaking.

(j) Have a positive attitude!


In addition to high standards for musical excellence in band, I strive for excellence in our conduct as well. Students are encouraged to follow the guidelines and procedures outlined above, which will enable them to enjoy a very productive, positive, and fun year in band. I realize that some days are more difficult than others, so Liberty Middle School has a plan in place to help ensure continued progress, not only for the individual student, but for the entire class.

Step-by-step procedures to help off-task students: (hopefully progressing through the list will not be necessary)

1. Verbal warning

2. Conference with student and phone call to parents

3. Behavior notice and phone call to parents

4. Detention or isolated lunch and phone call to parents

5. Office Referral (referrals will only be used after other interventions have been attempted unless the infraction requires an immediate referral based on school and/or county policies)

School is a place to learn many skills, so I all can work together to create a positive learning environment for everyone. Proper interaction with peers and adults is an important skill which can positively influence a student’s achievement in every class.

Liberty Middle School Bands



The emphasis on attendance and punctuality in performance organizations is a reflection of the corporate learning nature of such classes. Students demonstrate respect for peers as well as the activity through their punctuality and reliability. Performing in a band is like being a member of a sports team – each player plays an important role vital to the success of the group.

· Students are expected to attend all class rehearsals punctually.

· Students will be given ample advanced notice for any after-school sectionals or rehearsals, and attendance is highly encouraged.

· Performances are culminating activities for work done on a daily basis, and it is crucial for all students to attend. Students must notify the band director of illnesses or emergencies, and these students will have an opportunity to do make-up work.


· Liberty Middle School Bands are involved in many performance opportunities throughout the year, as noted on the event schedule included in this packet. Please refer to this schedule for all pertinent dates.

· In addition to their band experience, students may wish to participate in the Marching Band, a group for promoting school spirit who membership consists of 7th and 8th graders.The Symphonic Band membership is by audition only. The Concert Band consists of students that play at Level 1. The Jazz Ensemble membership is determined by audition. Students will be given audition information at the beginning of the school year. These groups are open to any student who has been playing his or her instrument for at least one year. Each group will meet and/or rehearse on various days to be announced from 4:30-6:00 p.m. Concert information will be provided at the first rehearsal but may change throughout the school year as additional performance opportunities arise.

· All students are strongly encouraged to pursue private instruction on their instrument. Instructors can be found at most of the local music stores, but please let me know if you need help in finding a private instructor.

Materials Needed

· Instrument (in good playing condition), plus necessary accessories

o 6th graders will be tested during the first few days of class. Information will be sent home pertaining to the instrument your child will be playing (including instrument rental information and necessary accessories).

· Method Book

o 6th graders: Please purchase Sound Innovations Book 1 (for your instrument)

o 7th graders: Please purchase Sound Innovations Book 2

o 8th graders: Supplemental materials provided

· PENCIL! (w/good eraser)

· Agenda – This is required when students need to leave the band room for any reason (restroom, clinic, etc.).

· Sheet Music & Music Folder (to be provided by the Liberty Band Program).

Liberty Middle School Bands



Concert Attire

1. Winter & Spring Concerts

· All band members wear long-sleeved white shirt, black slacks, dark socks, dark shoes (no tennis shoes).

2. Symphonic Band, and Large Group Performance Evaluation (LGPE) Concerts (7th & 8th Grade Only)

· Ladies: Black dress slacks (no skirts please), long-sleeved black dress shirt free from

writing or designs, black socks or panty hose and black shoes (no tennis shoes).

· Gentlemen: Black dress pants (no jeans), long-sleeved black dress shirt free from writing or

designs, black socks and black shoes (no tennis shoes).


Student success in Band is dependent on a variety of factors. For this reason, a student’s grade is NOT based solely upon his/her performing ability. Mr. Luke will evaluate these factors as listed below, in order to assess each student. All parents have the ability to check their child’s grade through the Newton County grading system, Infinite Campus.

Objectives/ Curriculum Standards

1. Singing, alone and with others, a varied repertoire of music

2. Performing on instruments, alone and with others, a varied repertoire of music

3. Reading and notating music

4. Improvising melodies, variations, and accompaniments

5. Composing and arranging music within specified guidelines

6. Listening to, analyzing, and describing music

7. Evaluating music and music performances

8. Understanding relationships between music, the other arts, and disciplines outside the arts

9. Understanding music in relation to history and culture

Classroom Participation (40%)

· Students are required to be prepared, attentive and cooperative in daily rehearsals. Concentration level should be extremely high while playing, and talking should occur only at the appropriate times. Music instructions should be clearly understood and implemented immediately.

· If a student’s instrument is in the repair shop, I must have a signed note from a parent/guardian.

Performance Evaluation (40%)

· Individual playing tests and public performances will form the basis of each student’s performance evaluation. Students not in attendance at concerts will need to make an appointment with the director to perform their concert music for a grade. This assignment must be completed within one week after the missed performance.

Practice Records (20%)

· Practice records are homework for band class and contribute to the success of our band program.

In general, students need to spend approximately 20 minutes a day practicing at home or the amount of time necessary to accomplish the performance requirements of their particular ensemble. 

· Practice records are due on a weekly basis and must be signed by a parent/guardian.

· Once the next practice record is due, the previous week’s practice record will receive a lower grade. It is important that students get into a routine of turning in their practice record on a weekly basis. If a practice record is lost, there are always extra practice record forms available in the band room.

· Specific time-requirements for each letter grade are listed on the individual practice records.

Power Pass Offs and Lessons from Rubank Text

Each Liberty Middle School student naturally progresses at a different level and speed. To facilitate the individual’s learning to the maximum of his or her capabilities, each student will have the opportunity to perform Pass Off requirements and Lessons for the director. During each quarter, 9 Pass off marks in the band curriculum book and/or 5 individual lessons in Rubank method book are required. These performance opportunities are scheduled during the regular class day, as often as possible, but due to the lack of time, most band members are encouraged to stay after school for lessons. These lessons are one on one time for the director or private teacher to work with a student on specific goals and performance characteristics unique to that student. Students will receive a grade based on their progress and number of requirements set by the syllabus. This grade will be part of the nine weeks grade. 

In addition, each student’s progress, recorded in the Progress Chart, will be used to establish seating within the band. It is the responsibility of each student to be present and factor in the development and improvement of instrumental programs. Only through a student’s hard work can his or her own work and band be SUPERIOR! Those students who excel on these progress marks and lessons beyond the average expectation (minimum requirements on the syllabus) will be investing in their future abilities to audition for college scholarships.


Liberty Middle School Band Practice Record – 1st Quarter ’15-16

Name _____________________________ Class Period _____________ Inst_______________


























Liberty Band Practice Record Grading Scale & Helpful Hints

2015 – 2016






















Helpful Tips for Practice Records:

· Try to practice an average of 20 minutes a day.

· Try to practice at the same time and in the same location.

· The band room is open at 8:15 a.m. for early practice on Tuesday and Thursday. Students need to work on fundamentals and band music.

· Never skip more than 2 days in a row of practicing during the week.

· Practice records need to be turned in by every single week for full credit. Late practice records will receive a lower grade and are only accepted one week late.

· Parent/guardian signature is required for credit.

· Turn practice record in to the wall pockets in the front of the room – each class period has its own pocket. The director will return practice records to students within a day or two.

Band Handbook Contract

Liberty Middle School Bands



LAST NAME ____________________ FIRST NAME ___________________

TEAM _____________ HOMEROOM TEACHER _______________________

INSTRUMENT __________________________________

INSTRUMENT BRAND ____________________ SERIAL # ____________

(Selmer, Yamaha, Bach, Armstrong, etc.) (Engraved on instrument)

STREET ADDRESS __________________________________________________

CITY/ZIP __________________________________________________

HOME PHONE ____________________________

PARENT/GUARDIAN NAME ________________________________________

PARENT/GUARDIAN WORK # ______________________________

CELL PHONE # ______________________________

PARENT/GUARDIAN EMAIL ________________________________________


My signature indicates that I have read and understand the contents of the band handbook. I am aware of the event schedule, conduct/expectations, and grading policies of the Liberty Middle School Band Program. I understand that I must uphold the contents of this handbook in order for this program to be successful and outstanding.

______________________________ _______________________________

Student’s Name (Print) Parent(s’) Name (Print)

______________________________ _______________________________

Student Signature Parent Signature