North Wilkes Middle School

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Public Notice


December 19, 2018 Winter Band Concert
  A video of the concert is posted below for your viewing pleasure.

Click the link above for a PDF copy of the Band Handbook

North Wilkes Middle School

Band Handbook

2018 - 2019

North Wilkes Middle School Band

Dear Parents/Guardians,

        I would like to welcome you to the North Wilkes Middle School Band program. I am very happy that your student has made the decision to join the band.  Band can be a fun and rewarding experience throughout your child’s life, not just in school. For the returning members, welcome back!

        The following handbook is intended to provide you with the information that you and your child need to be successful in the North Wilkes Middle School Band program.  Please use this handbook as a source of information regarding instrument selection, required materials, classroom rules, grading, and a lot more.


On Thursday, August 30 at 6:00 p.m. in the NWMS cafeteria, a representative from Music and Arts will be present to cover the details of their instrument rental program.  Also at this meeting, parents will be able to purchase the other required materials needed for class. The instrument care kits and mouthpieces will also be available.

Thank you for the support of your child’s musical involvement and growth.  Learning to play an instrument is not easy, but the rewards of the hard work and dedication make it well worth the effort.  Your help, involvement, and enthusiasm are VERY important to your child’s success. Please continue to support your child in this path and you will all see the wonderful rewards for years to come.

Please feel free to contact me at any time with questions, comments, or concerns. I want this to be a positive experience for every child in the program. My email address is or you can reach me at the office phone at the middle school or high school band room.


Jacob A. Brittain

Director of Bands

CONCERT DATES (All concerts will be held at North Wilkes Middle School in the cafeteria)

  • Fall Concert October 25 at 7pm
  • Christmas Concert December 11th at 7pm
  • MPA Concert TBA
  • Spring Concert TBA


The following is a list of supplies that students will need for band for the 2017 - 2018 school year.  If you already have any of these supplies, it will not be necessary to buy them again. Most of these items can be used through high school and in most instances, on into college.  Finally, all students need to label their instrument case/stick bag, music books, and binder with their full name.

    Instrument in good playing condition

    Care Kit for your instrument

    Essential Elements - Book 1 (will be purchased from Mr. Brittain)

    Band Notebook (Provided by Mr. Brittain)

    A PENCIL (keep it in your case)

    Metronome and Tuner (Stand alone options can be purchased.  However, there are free smartphone/tablet apps and websites that can be used.)


    Flute – Jupiter, Yamaha, Armstrong, Artley, Bundy, Gemeinhardt

    Clarinet – Jupiter, Yamaha, Bundy, Noblet, Normandy, Selmer, Buffet, Vito, Leblanc

    Saxophone – Jupiter, Yamaha, Bundy, Selmer, King, Conn

    Trumpet – Jupiter, Yamaha, Bach, Getzen, Conn, King, Eastman

    Trombone – Jupiter, Yamaha, Bach, Getzen, King, Eastman

    Percussion Kits – Jupiter, Yamaha, Pearl, Selmer, Mapex, Ludwig

    Percussion kits must include a bell kit and practice pad or snare drum

     Percussionist also need to have:

  •      Snare drum sticks (usually included in the above kits)
  •      Medium-Hard Bell/Xylophone Mallets (usually included in the above kits)

Students must have an instrument to use in class by Tuesday, September 4th.


We have a very limited number of school owned instruments.  Our inventory includes instruments such as tuba, euphonium, bass clarinet, tenor saxophone, baritone saxophone, and French horns.  If your child is fit for one of these instruments, the following conditions apply.

Every effort will be made to insure that school owned instruments are in good playing condition before being issued to the students.  There will be a $10 fee for use of school owned instruments.  All instruments are to be checked in at the end of the school year in the same condition as when they were checked out.  Students are responsible for routine maintenance (oil valves, cleaning, etc.), breakage, and repairs.

Students observed abusing school instruments will forfeit their privilege to use a school owned instrument and that student will be required to pay the cost to repair the instrument.


The rehearsal and performance schedule is set well in advance, allowing students to plan other activities and obligations around the established schedule.  The Director should be notified IN ADVANCE if a student is going to be absent from a performance.  Absences from band performances/rehearsals are unexcused unless due to (a) viable personal illness (parent request), (b) death in the family, (c) an emergency, or (d) special permission of the Director(s) obtained in advance by the parent/guardian.  Students must exhibit consistent responsibility in these areas.

Students missing a performance (excused or unexcused), will complete an alternate assignment.  The

assignment will be due one (1) week after the missed performance.  The student may choose one of the following two assignments:

    Perform all missed performance music individually for the director(s).

    Write a 3 page (typed, double spaced, 12 font) biography of a composer.  The student may choose a composer from the performance material of the missed performance.


Grades will be calculated using the following scale:

10% -  Participation

     Participation in Rehearsals

20% -  Daily/Homework

     Theory Assignments

     Materials in class (Cumulative 9 week grade)

30% -  Quizzes

     Written Quizzes

     Playing Quizzes

     Parent Sign-off on Parent Notes

40% -  Tests

     Written Tests

     Playing Tests

     Performance Attendance


    Performance attendance will be included as a test grade.  Not attending the performance (or doing the alternate assignment) will result in a grade of 0.

    Not having an instrument/materials in class will result in the participation grade being lowered by 5 points for each time materials aren't present.  Parent contact will occur after the 3rd time.

    A student that does not actively participate in class will have their participation grade lowered by 20 points.


Students are required and expected to practice their instrument at home.  I ask that all students practice a total of 60 minutes (1 hour) each week at home.  This may be done in 10 minute increments 6 days a week. Please do not attempt to cram all your practice time into 1 or 2 days.  The brain retains information and works better when a task is spread over several days and in smaller doses.


The following is a list of classroom rules that ALL students are expected to follow.

  1.     No talking or playing out of turn when the director is working.
  2.     No food, gum, or drinks (other than water) in the band room.
  3.     No electronic devices are to be out in class.
  4.     Follow all North Wilkes Middle School rules and be actively engaged at all times.


The following is a list of procedures that students should follow everyday as part of our class.

  1.     Students should enter the classroom and immediately get out all required materials – instrument, pencil, binders, method books, valve oil, reeds, etc.  Leave all other materials in the storage room. Students will get a stand off of the stand rack to bring back to their seat.
  2.     Students must be in their seats with materials and ready to play within 3 minutes of the class bell ringing.
  3.     You should go to the restroom during class change, not during rehearsal time.
  4.     Do not touch/play the percussion equipment unless you are a percussionist.
  5.     At the end of class make sure you put all of your equipment away and clean your area.


For all stage performances (Christmas concert, spring concert, concert festival, graduation, etc.) students will wear the following attire.  All items must be in school dress code!

Gentlemen:  Black dress shirt, black pants, black socks, and black shoes.

Ladies: Black shirt (solid color), black pants/skirt OR black dress (Skirts and dresses must be

below the knee when seated), black shoes.

If you are not dressed appropriately you will not perform and your grade will be a 0 for the performance.


    Handle with care!  Your instrument is made of breakable parts, so be careful handling it.  Do not let younger siblings handle your instrument.

    Always store your instrument safely in the case when you are not playing it.

    Before you pick up your case, make sure the latches are closed.

    Do not let the instrument get too hot or too cold.  For example, avoid leaving it in the car for an extended period of time on an extremely hot or cold day.

    Do not drink (except water) or eat right before playing your instrument.  If you do eat or drink something other than water, brush your teeth before playing.  This will keep sugar and other crud from building up in your instrument.

    Flutes and reed instruments:

    Swab your instrument out after each time you play it.

    Clarinets should remove their reed after each playing and place it back in the reed case.


    Check valves and slides each day for proper oiling and greasing (Oil valves once a week).

    Using a mouthpiece brush, clean the mouthpiece out weekly.


    Help select a regular practice time and place for your child.

    Encourage your child through positive support.  Listen to practice sessions on occasion.

    Everyone will probably require a ton of patience while the beginning musician squeaks, squawks, and moans and groans his/her way through the first several weeks.  It will get better! With regular practice those noises

will be replaced in no time with the wonderful sounds of music!  The rewards are well worth the wait.

    Set aside our concert dates to be sure you and your child can attend.

    Help students care for their instruments (maintenance, keep others from handling/playing, etc.)

    Attend the North Wilkes Band Boosters meeting every first Tuesday of each month. These meetings will be held in the band room at North Wilkes High School at 6 p.m.


  • All District Band/All-State Auditions
  • All County Honors Band
  • Marching Band pit percussion (During football season only)

Additional information will be coming home soon about these wonderful opportunities.


    Phone:  High School extension: 4175

     Middle School extension: 4984


    Please keep me informed of any issues that may be impeding your child’s progress.


Students and parents are required to fill out and return the Band Agreement form at the beginning of each year upon becoming a member of the North Wilkes Middle School Band.  This form tells me, as the Director, that both the parent and student have read, understood, and agree to the rules, guidelines, etc. outlined in the Band Handbook.


The North Wilkes Band Programs hold a few different fundraising events during the school year. The funds raised during these events help us to purchase music, pay for buses on trips, purchase new equipment, repair school owned equipment, etc.

More information regarding each fundraiser will be sent out closer to the period of time the fundraiser is held.

We ask that every child  participates in every fundraiser we hold in order to give each child the best opportunities available for them while they are a part of the North Wilkes Band Program.



The North Wilkes Band program has a booster club that is made up of parents, alumni, friends, and family and it is a very active volunteer group that assists the band program with needs that are not funded or supported by the school system.  We consider all band families a part of the Boosters.  Boosters assist with needs from chaperoning events, fundraisers, and working concession stands plus many more program activities.  Being active in the booster program is a great way to be involved with your child’s band experience and make new friends. We would like to invite you to become active participant in your child’s musical experience.  If you so choose to become a part of the boosters you may choose to pay a $5 fee to help support our program.

One way to be involved is to attend the monthly meetings.  The North Wilkes Band Boosters meet once a month on the third Thursday at 6:30 p.m. in the high school band room.  By attending the monthly meetings, you have a voice in the program.  It is the goal of the boosters to have a family representative for each band student to attend the booster meetings.  If you have a specific area you would like to help with, you may also volunteer your time for one of our committees.

We want you to be as excited as we are about the upcoming year.  Many boosters have spent countless hours with the students on band trips, competitions, and ball games.  The boosters have witnessed firsthand the wonderful students and musicians that you as a parent have raised.  The boosters are extremely proud of the students and the band program and want to share that pride with everyone.  Come join us for the experience of a lifetime and share it with your student. Our program makes a positive difference in the lives of the youth in Northern Wilkes County.  Come experience the delight of watching our children bring joy through music to the hearts of all that see them perform.

Thank you for support and dedication,

Band Booster President: Jennifer Joines

Treasurer: Michelle Elliott/Deanna Berrier

Secretary: Rachel Billings

2018 – 2019

North Wilkes Middle School

Band Agreement

I acknowledge, as the student, that I have read and understand the information found in the North Wilkes Middle School Band Handbook.  I agree to follow the rules outlined in the handbook. I also understand that repeated failure to follow the rules in the handbook or failure to attend performances could lead to my dismissal from the band.

Student Name _____________________________________________  Date _____________________

Student Signature ____________________________________________________________________

I acknowledge, as the parent/guardian, that I have read and understand the information found in the North Wilkes Middle School Band Handbook.  I agree to assist my child in following the rules outlined in the handbook. I also understand that the repeated failure of my child to follow the rules in the handbook or failure to attend performances could lead to his/her dismissal.

Parent Name _____________________________________________  Date ______________________

Parent Signature ______________________________________________________________________


Photography Waiver for the NWMS Band

I am aware that participation in the North Wilkes Middle School Band will place my child in a position to have his/her likeness recorded in both still pictures and video.  I grant my permission to the band, any governing body, host at any event, and any news media, to record, use for promotion, and/or publish without any compensation to me or to my family for use thereof.

Parent Signature ______________________________________________________________________  

Please fill out this page, remove it from the handbook, and return to Mr. Brittain by September 4, 2018 for a grade.