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    LS Band

    Attention 5th grade families! Scroll to the bottom for PDF copies of materials and information about band!

    (Photos by Carrie Johnson)

    Minnehaha Academy 5th Grade Band Information



    In fifth grade, your child has the opportunity to join band!  Band is a class that meets during the school day.  In fifth grade, students begin the year in lessons with like instruments and then meet as a band once they have learned the basics.   


    Instruments: Students wishing to join band will need an instrument and appropriate accessories, as well as a red Standard of Excellence Book 1.


    Your child and their classmates have already been introduced to the instruments in school.  Parents wishing to rent, buy or rent to buy an instrument are encouraged to do so through a reputable music store. 

    NOTE: Beware!  Please ask before buying instrument off of ebay or at retail or department stores!  These instruments, although “affordable” and shiny, are often of very low quality, and have many problems that make it difficult for student success on the instrument!


    Percussion:  We often have many students who show interest in playing percussion.  Due to the skill level required, the need for a balanced band, and to insure that students are successful, membership to the percussion section is very selective and limited to a few students each year.  Students are required to have a minimum of two (2) or more years of piano lessons, demonstrate a clear ability to read and play rhythms and notes, keep a steady pulse, play mallet instruments and must show leadership and good grades/behavior in school.  Students will have to audition and be selected before being admitted, so it is a good idea to have your students keep an open mind about their second instrument choice.  Remember: Students will not be allowed to play percussion without Mr. Marsolek’s signed approval!


    Benefits of Music:  (Just a few!)  The opportunity for your child to participate in band is very special!  They have fun, they grow as musicians, and test scores in math and reading have been shown to improve.  Colleges and institutes of higher learning look to students with music experiences because they know that these students often are more disciplined and dedicated, which often results in a higher admittance rate and more dollars for scholarships.  Our high school  music department has also given students the opportunity to travel around the world on band trips!  Also, as a reminder, it is possible for students to be involved in both band and athletics – in fact many of our school’s star athletes are involved in music!


    This is a lot of information to take in, and it is a big decision!  We want every student to have the opportunity to plan in band.  If there is anything that we can help you with, please feel free to contact us!  You may call me at 612-721-3359 x2017 if you have further questions or concerns. We look forward to seeing you on Thursday the 8th or talking to you on the phone about your child’s participation in this exciting opportunity of band!

    I look forward to working with you!

    Matthew Marsolek, Band Director


    How should we go about finding an
    instrument for our child?

    We recommend that students find an instrument through a reputable local music store.  Click the link on the right to see a list of local music stores that rent and sell instruments.

    *NOTE* : Many people are looking at buying new instruments online.

    This is dangerous, as you don’t know the exact condition of the instrument. Oftentimes online vendors sell cheaper quality instruments. Keep in mind that you usually get what you pay for. If you are looking to buy online, please show the website to Mr. Marsolek.

    Be wary of e-bay instruments!! If you are looking online, I know some of the more
    reputable sites. My recommendation is that you are able to play on the instrument before you are “stuck” with it. Be wary of e-bay instruments!! Also, instruments purchased at large retail stores are also of inferior quality, do not play well, and are difficult to repair.

    Here is a website with a list of quality instrument brands, along with other great beginning band resources:  http://www.beginband.com/tipsbuy.shtml

    When in doubt, do not hesitate to contact me!  I would love to help you!

    Matthew Marsolek,
    Aug 23, 2012, 2:13 PM
    Matthew Marsolek,
    May 23, 2013, 8:04 AM