Dear parents and students,
This week students will be learning more about high school course options during presentations by Bluefield. Band is offered as a course at the high school level in grades 10-12 and I hope that this year’s grade 9 band students will carefully consider this option.
I have had many students who have continued their music education in high school and then have gone on to play in community bands, university ensembles (while studying in other disciplines), or have transferred their band skills to learn to play new instruments in different styles. I also know of former band students who are pursuing careers in music as performers, teachers, and even members of classical orchestras. For many students, the experiences they enjoyed as members of the high school band have created positive memories and lifelong friendships.
Employability skills which help to prepare students for the work world are also developed through participation in band programs. Career Exploration and Opportunities teachers attest to the fact that the Employability Skills 2000+ are covered in music education. These essential skills include communication, teamwork, dedication, leadership, flexibility, and diplomacy. These are skills that are also highly valued by universities and colleges. Band is an excellent extra-curricular activity and is recognized as such on applications for scholarships and awards.
While music may be your only elective if you study French immersion, it is an excellent elective and one that can lead to many positive outcomes. Your schedule will open up for more electives in grade 11 and grade 12! Music 421 expectations are set at an accessible and appropriate level, and I am confident that students who have successfully participated in band from grade 7 to 9 will feel comfortable continuing to develop their skills at Bluefield.
Making music can be incredibly beneficial to mental health in times of difficulty. In our fast paced, personal device driven world, I believe that being able to connect to our feelings, and to one another, through music is essential now, more than ever.
If students or parents have any questions about the high school band program, please don’t hesitate to ask. This year’s grade 9 band class is bright and talented and it’s been a pleasure to work with them. I hope that many of them will continue to participate in band at the high school level.
You may also wish to read these articles which highlight the many benefits of music education:
Medicine and music: there are more connections than you might think
Important Benefits of Music In Our Schools
Music Students Score Better in Math, Science, English Than Nonmusical Peers (American Psychological Association)
Music Students Score Better in Math, Science
The Future Is Social and Emotional: Evolving Skills Needs in the 21st Century
Conference Board of Canada: Social and Emotional Skills needed