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*****5th and 6th grade students should check the time sheet for any last minute changes. There has been several items that the students are consistently not sharing at home:

1.  What should they wear?  We want to keep the atmosphere very relaxed. Whatever they wear to school that day is fine. If they want to dress up for some type of formal picture that is OK too. 

2.  What time should they arrive? About 10 minutes before they are supposed to play they should be in the band room warming up. The play is having their final dress rehearsal so they shouldn't plan on warming up anymore than 5-10 minutes. Brass players should use the lip slur exercise and woodwinds nice long tones getting the reed ready. Maybe review a passage that might have required extra time while learning the piece. Then head to their performance room. They should be at their performance room a few minutes early. If the door is closed and someone is playing, wait in the hallway until they finish. If you notice there are very few if any breaks. "To arrive early, is to be on time; to arrive on time, is to be late."

3.  If their performance time is 5:00 or before, they may stay after school. However they are expected to stay either in the band room working on homework OR in one of the performance rooms listening to their classmates. If caught roaming the hallways or misbehaving they will be directed to go outside and wait until parents arrive. 


There will be an "office" area inside the band room where the students can find out their ratings. 5th graders may pick up their medals and 6th graders that paid for medals may pick them up in this area. The sheets will be held until class on Friday so that the directors may read them. Ensemble sheets will be copied so that each student may receive a copy of their evaluation.


On Friday, the 6th grade students should be ready to turn in the notes that they have taken during class.  This would include but not limited to: all the steps that you go through to select a piece of music, the characteristics that you look for when selecting a partner for a duet / small ensemble, a list of items that the student and Mr. Swallow talked about during individual "coaching" sessions (all of the students had several one on one sessions to receive help during the last 4 weeks), a web address where they went to to listen to their piece (almost every student was able to find a recording of their piece, even if it was a variation), any thing else that the student can remember that we may discussed in class that helped you through this unit of study. 


If your child seems nervous, remind them to take a deep breath and everything will be fine.   posted 5-9-2018

***The bands have spent the last 7 weeks in class preparing for last Saturday's performance and our evaluation at the state level. Having to overcome many obstacles on Saturday, the 8th Grade Band received a Division I rating. I was extremely proud of the 8th graders and how they held their composure despite  the adversity that they were facing.  Even with all of the last minute obstacles,  23 members of the 8th grade band put together a performance that earned them a Division I rating at the IESA State Music Evaluation. Congratulations to these 23 members who were actually learning new parts as we were walking into the performance. I am very proud of your hard work and determination this year!

The CJHS Jazz Band also received a Division I rating. Not only is this the first year for the return of the CJHS Jazz Band it has been 9 years since they have participated in the evaluation at the state level. Way to go Mr. Borst and the members of the CJHS Jazz Band.  The jazz band is made up of 6th, 7th and 8th music students and they meet one day a week for an hour long rehearsal. CONGRATULATIONS CJHS JAZZ BAND!!! Mr. Borst is having a special rehearsal this Thursday (May 3) for students in grades 5, 6, and 7 that think they may want to participate in the jazz band next year. This information will be posted on each of the grade level pages as well as in the document section.

The 7th grade band also participated in the evaluation performance on Saturday.  Although the band had been showing steady improvement during the week leading up to the performance, it wasn't quite enough as they received a Division II rating. 

The bands would like give a special shout out to the Chiddix Honors Choir. Their performance received a Division I rating as well as being designated as "Best of the Day" in the choir division. Congratulations to all of the participants on Saturday for a job well done! 

Everyone should check their respective grade level pages for special messages that are grade level specific.     posted 4-30-2018

***Performance times for Saturday, April 28:

8th Grade Band
Warm Up - 7:30 AM
Perform - 8:00 AM

7th Grade Band
Warm Up - 8:20
Perform - 8:50

Jazz Band
Warm Up - 10:00
Performance - 10:30

Both bands as well as the jazz band will use the orchestra room as their home room. The band room will be used by all schools for a warm up room. All instruments and music MUST be removed from the band room before 7:30 am and must go home with the students unless they plan on staying to help work the event. The next time the students will have access to the room will be 1:00 pm.  Their is an admission fee for the event, $3 for adults and $2 for students. This fee is set by the state association (IESA) and not by Chiddix. We will be needing approximately 10 adults to work during the event (tickets, door, set up crew). Students will also be asked to work throughout the event. Please check your respective pages to see if there is any extra instructions for your grade level. 
(posted 4-14-2018)


Thursday March 8, 2018
CJHS Gymnasium
7:00 PM
performance order:

CJHS Jazz Band
5th Grade Cadet Band
6th Grade Charger Band
7th Grade Concert Band
8th Grade Symphonic Band

Concert Attire:  Each grade level has the same concert attire as previous concerts this year. We have reviewed this in class several times over the last two weeks and you can find it on the respective grade level pages. Please ask your student.

Jazz Band 5:30 in the Gym
5th Grade 6:40 in the Cafeteria
6th Grade 6:30 in the Band Room
7th Grade 6:40 in the Band Room
8th Grade 6:45 in the Band Room

We would like to apologize that it has taken so long to finalize call times. There have been some unique circumstances involved with this concert and the scheduling for the concert.  It is now set and the information is out there for everyone. We are asking all students to stay for the entire concert. The concert should take less than one hour to finish. We realize there may be special circumstances. Take care of this before the concert. The directors will not have time to answer questions until after the concert. We are very excited for all five ensembles to perform tomorrow night as part of Music in our Schools Monthposted 3-7-2018

 ****Parents and students should check their respective grade level pages for important information pertaining to each respective band. posted Feb. 6, 2018

****7th and 8th grade Solo and Ensemble contestants will need to give Mr. Swallow the title and composer of their piece as well as the person that will be accompanying them. This information must be to Mr. Swallow no later than 4:00 pm on Wednesday, February 21. If you have any questions please contact Mr. Swallow.  posted Feb. 6, 2018

 ****Here are some pics of the 8th graders in a full orchestra rehearsal. More info about next week's concert on the 8th grade page.

It is the time of the year that we all need to think about the annual Spaghetti Supper sponsored by the Unit 5 Music Parents. This is the one and only fundraiser that our parent group has during the year yet through this event, they are able to help fund 18 different music programs in 6 different buildings. The Chiddix 5th Grade Cadet Band (6:05) and the 6th Grade Charger Band (6:25) will be performing that night. Both of these bands may check individual pages for details concerning when, where , etc.  
Last year the Chiddix Band "Families" set a record of 407 ticket sales!!!! For all the families that purchased tickets to help with this event, we say "THANK YOU". I know the students would love to be able to hit that 400+ mark again but class size is smaller this year so the equivalent goal for this year is at 350 tickets sold, grades 5-8.  7th and 8th Grade families are strongly encouraged to come out and eat spaghetti that night. The ticket form can be found on the "documents" page. You may download it, fill it out, and then send the form and money to school with your child. OR you fill in the form and send it to me electronically, then send the ticket money to school with your child the next day. Thanks in advance for all the families who help support the supper on November 13! 
The Chiddix Bands need a minimum of 10 parents to volunteer to work from 6:45 - 8:00. The Chiddix spots are near the bottom of the Sign Up Genuis Webpage. Last year we were the first to fill in our 10 names, let's see if we can't be the first again.  posted 10-25-2017

**** The following students were selected to perform with the ILMEA District III Junior High Honor Band. 
  Anisha Amaravadi - Flute
Marisa Schaafsma - Alto Sax
Caleb Shim - Alto Sax
Lily Vale - Alto Sax
The band will rehearse and perform on Saturday, November 18 at Olivet Nazarene University, Bouronnais, IL.  Thank you to all the students who auditioned. Your hard work did not go unnoticed!     posted 10-25-2017

Welcome to the 2017-18 school year!!
The year has been off and running for several weeks now.  The important information that you will find will be concert dates for the entire year as well as what the students should wear to a performance. 

If you should ever have any questions, comments or concerns, PLEASE contact Mr. Swallow, Mrs. Ogdon, or 
Mr. Bortz. We have an open door policy and love visitors. Look for more info listed during the next few days.                    posted 10-12-2017

****Check your respective grade level page for some announcements concerning our concerts. I will also upload a document that contains all of the concert dates as well as put them in the "announcement" box on the lower right hand side of the page. Try to get into a habit of looking at the page at least once a week. 

The picture / archive page will have pictures and / or announcements that were made that help tell a little history of the band when new students, parents  and teachers work with the program. 

The most important thing to remember about the website is that if you have ANY questions throughout the year PLEASE ask. Thanks for all of your help and support that you give to the Chiddix Bands!   posted 10-12-17

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Today's fun facts are about Mr. Swallow

This begins Mr. Swallow's 33rd year of teaching, 30 in Unit 5 and 23 of those years here at Chiddix. What a great place to call home! Some more trivia facts to think about:
  • This year marks the 50th first day of school that Mr. Swallow has experienced.
  • This year's 6th graders will be the last class Mr. Swallow teachers all four years while they are at Chiddix. 
  • Mr. Swallow began teaching in Unit 5 the year Parkside Elementary and Northpoint opened their doors.
  • After that first year, the following buildings opened:
    • Towanda demolition, remodel, construction
    • Pepper Ridge
    • Prairieland
    • Additions at Northpoint, Chiddix JH and Parkside JH
    • Normal Community West High School
    • Fox Creek
    • Grove
    • Additions at Sugar Creek
    • Normal Community High School
    • Demolition of the north end of NCHS, and additions to the south end and the renaming of this building to Kingsley JH
    • Benjamin, Cedar Ridge, Evans JH   
    • Complete remodel of Chiddix   
Chiddix Junior High School Bands
 300 S. Walnut Street  |  Normal, IL  61761

Upcoming Events


Mon., Nov. 13, 2017        5th & 6th Grade       NCHS**
Thurs., Nov. 16, 2017      7th & 8th Grade       CJHS**
Thurs., Dec. 14, 2017       5th Grade                NCHS**
Tuesday, Dec. 19, 2017    8th Grade                NCHS** (added 12-1-2017)
Tues., Feb. 27, 2018         NO CONCERT, MOVED TO MARCH 8       (possibly change to Thurs. March 8 to go with 5th/6th)
Thurs., March 8, 2018       5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, Jazz      CJHS**
Sat., April 7, 2018      Twin Cities Honor 7/8    BJHS
Sat., April 14, 2018            S & E contest, 7/8  Calvary Chr. Academy
Sat., April 28, 2018    Host/Perform IESA, 7/8  CJHS**
Thurs., May 10, 2018 Host S&E, Select 5/6**    CJHS (6th required)
Mon., May 14, 2018            7th & 8th Grade     CJHS**

**Attendance required at these events for that particular grade level.