Band and Orchestra for 5th Graders

  • Starting a musical instrument is a wonderful adventure.  Students not only learn songs that they and friends/family can enjoy, they are learning other skills by being part of a music group.  Playing an instrument is an investment in a student's future.  It provides many opportunities for self-expression, creativity and achievement.

    Some of the benefits to playing an instrument are

    ♦   Problem Solving
    ♦   Teamwork
    ♦   Goal Setting
    ♦   Self-Expression
    ♦   Coordination
    ♦   Memory Skills
    ♦   Self-Confidence and Esteem
    ♦   Concentration
    ♦   Poise

    How to choose an instrument

    It's important to pick an instrument that the student enjoys because they will be more successful on it.  Factors included are what type of sound the student likes, which instrument is the most comfortable, and what sort of action the student would like to do more--bowing or blowing.

    It is especially important NOT to pick an instrument just because a friend likes it.  Students will commonly become frustrted when they pick an instrument based only on if their friend is playing it.

    Ways to get an instrument

     There are several ways to get an instrument, with varying costs to the parent.
    1. The family or extended family already has an instrument that can be used.
    2. There are neighbors or friends that have an instrument that can be used or bought for a small price.
    3. Garage sales/Pawn shops--if there is someone knowledgeable about instruments and able to tell if an instrument is good or not, sometimes good quality, inexpensive instruments can be found at garage sales and pawn shops.
    4. Renting from a music store--several area music stores supply instruments for student use.  A monthly fee is charged for using an instrument.  The rental fees add up towards eventual ownership of the instrument.
    5. Buying an instrument from a music store--instead of renting from a music store, there is the option of buying an instrument completely right away.
    6. Internet sites--there are some good quality music instrument sites that can offer decent, affordable instruments.  Please ask the middle school music teacher about these if you are interested.

    ∗∗∗Caution should be used when buying instruments on the internet or from "large box stores."  If the store or site sells many things aside from instruments, the instruments that are available are not a good quality.  They break easily, and are ofetn not repairable.  Many music stores will refuse to repair them because they are not good instruments.  They end up costing more money than they are worth.  It is recommended that instruments not be purchased from internet sites or "large box stores" that also sell other items that are not musical instruments.

    If parents have questions or concerns about getting an instrument, they should contact their respective music teacher.

    For band instruments:  David Niimi at
    For orchestra instruments:  Sharon Olsen at

    Instruments will not be needed the first few days of school.  It is wise to make arrangements to have an instrument sometime in August.