• Guitar flute   
    Erin Blystone
    Band 7 & 8
    Music 7
    Guitar I  &  II
    Room 522
    Extension: 1522


    Course Syllabus


    Handbook For

    Junior High Band



    Course Description: This course will focus on the instruction of students in instrumental music. This will include proper maintenance and care for each student’s respective instrument as well as correct playing technique, playing position, fingerings and music literature. Students will learn music theory and apply that knowledge to their musical performance. Students will perform in both solo and ensemble settings.


    Mandatory Materials:  Each student must posses an instrument that is in good playing condition. Students may own their own instrument, rent an instrument or use a school instrument. Student MUST have any necessary instrument accessories(such as reeds, valve oil, etc…) that are essential to the proper maintenance and performance of that instrument. These items can be purchased by the student on their own or in school. Students must have a band method/lesson book which will be provided by the instructor.


    Highly Recommended Materials: 1. music stand for home practice 2. metronome 3. supplemental music literature for student’s respective instrument 4. private music lessons(a list of private teachers can be obtained from the instructor)


    Grading: 1. written tests and quizzes 2. playing tests(lessons) 3. Daily participation grade(45 points for each nine weeks)  Includes the following: classroom participation and/or performance, class preparation, having all necessary materials each day for class(instrument, music, reeds, drumsticks etc…), instrument maintenance(see Instrument Inspections) 4.Practice Charts: Students are to turn in their weekly completed practice chart at the beginning of each week. Required times and parent signature must be filled in. Practice charts are worth a total of 5 points each week. Charts will then be returned back to students for the upcoming week.  5. Concerts(25 points for each concert) : All concerts are MANDATORY. Any student missing a concert must submit a written makeup assignment which will be provided by the instructor. 6.Three ring binder for music theory worksheets and supplemental handouts. Binders will be collected and graded at the end of each nine weeks.


    2015-2016  Concert Dates:


    Christmas Concert:  12/16/15

    Spring Concert: 5/18/16

    All concerts begin at 7:00 p.m. and will

    take place in the school’s auditorium
    Each concert is worth 25 points.
    Solo/Ensemble Concert
    Musically ready students will be chosen to participate in the annual Solo/Ensemble Concert on March 30, 2016 The concert will begin at 7:00. Students chosen will be announced after the Christmas concert.


    Band Lesson: All students are responsible for playing ONE LESSON PER WEEK.  Each weekly lesson is worth 10 points. Students will have 7-8 lessons each nine weeks. Lessons will be scheduled out of the regular band period. Students are responsible for showing up for their lessons and for making arrangements to schedule a lesson or makeup lesson. If a student does not receive a lesson that is the fault of the instructor, a makeup lesson will be scheduled for you.


    Instrument Inspections: There will be periodic instrument inspections of personal and school instruments. Inspection criteria is as follows:


    Woodwinds: Instrument needs to be oiled and clean with all keys working properly. There should be a minimum of 3 working reeds in your case at all times. Make sure that cork is in good shape as well as ligatures. Check for loose screws, springs and rods. These should be brought to the attention of the instructor to repair. Students should not store pencils, music, etc in your case…only your instrument. Case should be tagged and marked.


    Brass:  Instrument needs to be oiled and clean with all keys and slides working properly. Mouthpieces need to be cleaned periodically and horns flushed out. Check corks on spit valves. French horn players should check their strings for adjustment or replacement. Make sure that a mouthpiece that has become stuck is immediately brought to the attention of the instructor.


    Percussion: Instruments, carriers, and cases need to be clean and in working order. Heads need to be in working condition as well as sticks and mallets. Students need their own pair of drumsticks. Please make sure that these are marked with your name.


    Practice Charts: Students will be responsible for documenting their weekly practice with a practice chart. Chart must be filled out and signed by parent or guardian in order to be valid. Student must have a minimum of 2 hours per week of practice time. Not meeting this requirement will result in point loss. A sample chart has been included for your reference. Practice charts are worth 5 points each week.


    Lesson Rubric: Students’ weekly lessons will be based on the following criteria:


    Pitch: Students are playing the correct notes

    Rhythm: Students are playing and counting the rhythms accurately

    Dynamics: Students are observing expression markings of volume accurately

    Articulation: Students are performing all articulation markings accurately such as accents, slurs, staccato, legato, etc…

    Tone Quality: Student demonstrates the correct sound that is particular to that instrument being played

    Intonation: Student demonstrates the ability to play in tune(not sharp or flat) and utilize correct breath support and embouchure.

    Preparation: Student demonstrates the ability to execute the assigned passages through consistent practice and rehearsal.


    Lessons will be based on a 5 point scale as follows:


    9-10:    Perfect/Near Perfect Lesson: little or no mistakes with high execution of defined goals

    7-8:    Good Lesson: few mistakes with above average execution of defined goals

    5-6:    Average Lesson: some mistakes with average execution of defined goals. Review of some

                skills is necessary

    3-4:     Below Average Lesson: many mistakes with below average execution of defined goals.

               Review of many skills is necessary

    1-2:    Poor Lesson: little or no accuracy with poor execution of defined goals. Review of all skills

               is necessary.

    0:        No Lesson/No Credit: failure of the student to play their lesson.


    Grading Scale:

    A:  93-100    B:    84-92    C:    75-83    D:    65-74    F:  64 and below


    Lockers and Locker Checks: Lockers are provided for each student. There will be locks assigned for each locker. Lockers are to be used at all times. Students are responsible for all items in lockers. If theft results from an unlocked locker, this becomes the responsibility of the student. If a student looses a lock, there will be a $15.00 replacement fee assessed to the student. Instruments MUST be put away in cases when you are done playing them. There should never be an instrument put into a locker and not put properly into its case. Lockers must be locked at all times. Instruments must be put in lockers. There should be no instruments left lying around in the room.

    Lockers will be checked at the end of the day on Fridays. Students should be taking instruments home for the weekend for home practicing. No instrument should be taken home without it being in its case!!


    Passes: Students may come to the band room out of study halls for further practice through the use of a pass. Students must get ALL passes in the morning before the start of period one. This includes passes for band room practice and also passes to get your instrument at the end of the day. Students cannot add other students’ names to their band pass without the permission of the instructor. These passes will not be honored and may result in the student not receiving passes in the future. Any band student who comes to the band room on a pass for practice will be included in a group practice/lesson or may be assigned to a practice room for independent practice. No one will be coming to the band room to “hang out”…only for practice!!


    General Rules: Students need to get to class on time. After a fourth tardy, a student will be given a disciplinary referral. Every tardy after that fourth tardy will result in a disciplinary referral as the tardies are cumulative. Please be on time!!!


    Students should not have food or drink of any kind in the band room. Students should not have gum also.


    Please bring a pencil with you to rehearsal and lessons.

    Contact Information
    Erin Blystone     Phone:   Extension  #1522
                             Email:  eblystone@mpasd.net



    Course Syllabus


    Guitar  I  &  Guitar II



    Course Description:  This course will introduce the student to guitar basics. This will include proper maintenance and care for the guitar as well as correct playing position and technique. Students will learn music theory as it relates to the guitar. Individual note reading(lead guitar) as well as chords(rhythm guitar) will be explored. Students will perform guitar literature in both solo and ensemble settings.


    Mandatory Materials:  1. Acoustic guitar(nylon or steel string) that is in good playing condition. All strings on guitar must be in good playing condition, also  2.  Guitar case  3. One package of replacement strings: light or extra light gauge for steel strings/medium or normal tension for nylon strings      4. Three ringer binder: Very important!!! Students will be receiving many supplemental informational and playing handouts  5.  Guitar picks: get at least 3: medium strength  6.  Method book: to be supplied by instructor


    Highly Recommended Materials:  1. guitar footrest  2. music stand            3. tuner(especially if you don’t have access to anything such as a keyboard to tune your guitar to)


    You can purchase any of these items at a local music store. Some suggestions:


    Volkweins, Latrobe

    Vittone’s Music, Greensburg


    …Or online or by phone…I suggest the following…they offer a 40-45% discount on all items…Highly recommended:


    Interstate Music:

    Website: www.interstatemusic.com

    Phone: (Toll Free):  1-877-213-2580



    Grading:  1. Written tests and quizzes 2. Playing tests 3. Daily participation grade(45 points per each nine weeks). Includes the following: classroom participation and/or performance, class preparation(PRACTICING!!), having all necessary materials each day for class, guitar maintenance 4. Three ring binder(30 points): This binder is VERY  important!! It will be used for supplemental music theory, playing and informational handouts and will be used on a DAILY basis. Binders should be organized and all supplemental materials must be in binder. Students will need supplemental materials to help in preparation of playing and written tests.








    Room 522    Extension:  1522

    Email:  eblystone@mpasd.net



    COURSE DESCRIPTIPN: This course will focus on exposing the student to a wide variety of musical elements and enrichment activities that will teach and enhance these musical concepts. Students will study the basic elements of music which will include: MELODY, NOTE READING AND MUSIC THEORY, HARMONY, RHYTHM, TONE COLOR, MUSICAL FORM. After students have gained a working musical knowledge of these basic elements of music, the students will then progress on to other related units and activities and apply their musical knowledge to some or all of the following areas:


    Instruments:  Orchestra, Band, World Instruments





    Composers and Periods of Music

    Styles of Music


    Miscellaneous Activities:  Art projects, Seasonal, Drama and Theatre, Group Music Projects, “Just For Fun” Activities


    GRADING: Students will be graded on the following:  Written quizzes and tests(various point values), Group Projects(various point values), Daily Participation Grade(45 points for a nine week grading period), Music Folder(various point values)





    Tentative Syllabus

    Guitar I and II
    This course is not currently being offered for the 2013-2014 school year.


    Introduction to Guitar Basics:  Care and Maintenance

                                                     Proper Playing Position and Technique



    First Position:

    Open Strings and Their First 3 Frets: String One: E: f, f#, g

                                                                String Two: B: c, c#, d

                                                                String Three: G: g#, a, a#

                                                                String Four: D: d#, e, f

                                                                String Five: A: a#, b, c

                                                                String Six: E: f, f#, g


    Chords: What are Chords and how to build them

                 Qualities of Chords: Major, minor, 7th

                 Basic guitar chords: How to read and finger them

                 Strum Patterns


    Chords to be studied:  C, C7, D, D7, Dm, E, E7, Em, F, G, G7, A, A7, Am, B,


    Chord Progressions: I, IV, V, I

                                    I, IV, V, vi


    Power Chords: What are Power Chords

                           How to read and finger them


    Tablature: What is Tablature

                     How to read tablature


    Miscellaneous: The following items will be introduced and taught when appropriate as we progress:


    Music Theory                                        Improvisation

    Guitar Terms                                        Barre Chords

    Strum Patterns                                     Solo and Ensemble Literature                          

    Lead Guitar Style(Single notes)            How To Replace Strings

    Rhythm Guitar Style(Chords)                Scales/Key Signatures

    Homework Assignments   Band 7/8   
    Band 7/8:  Students should continue to practice all musical selections for the December 18, 2013 Christmas Band Concert as well as their weekly band lesson material. Second semester, students should practice all music for the May 14, 2014 Spring Band concert as well as their weekly lesson assignments.
    Homework Assignments Music 7
    Music 7: No homework assignments. All activities are done in class.