Information for New Students

  • CMS Instrumental Music Program Information

     WELCOME! Thank you for becoming part of the music program at Christensen Middle School. You are about to embark on a musical journey that might become a part of your life for years to come. I look forward to working with you and hope you gain a greater appreciation for music.

     Schedule: 6th grade music students go to music everyday. Intermediate Band meets during 2nd or 3rd period and Intermediate Orchestra meets during 6th period (great way to end the day). 6th grade music students attend PE three times a week during “0” period (7:30 – 8:20 am).

     Selecting an Instrument: Students will prioritize their choice of instrument and will have the opportunity to try several of these during the first two weeks of class (an instrument “Petting Zoo”).  TYhis gives me a chance to foresee any physical problems or issues that may hinder a student’s progress and gives the students a chance to try several instruments. I want the students to be successful!  Based on their success and interest, the teacher and student will determine which instrument that student is best suited for and would like to play.

    Band students receive instruction on flute, clarinet, alto saxophone, trumpet, trombone, baritone, or tuba. Percussionist will be selected by audition only!  Orchestra students receive instruction on violin, viola, cello, or bass.  Students are welcome to come in after school to try other instruments.

     Instrument instruction/offerings: We make every attempt to provide instruction to students on their first choice of instrument. However, for beginning students to be successful learning music in a mixed instruments environment, the number of each instrument must be balanced for the size of the class, which may mean limiting the number of students on a particular instrument.

     Renting/Buying Instruments: In most instances, students are expected to provide their own instrument, but should not rent one until we have finished exploring the different instruments.  I strongly recommend renting an instrument for the first 3 months. Do not be tempted by “Great Deals” over the inter-net, on-line auction sites, or large discount stores. The prices are cheap because the instruments are cheap. Go to a quality music store! I will provide a list of reputable stores once we decide on instruments.

     Private Lessons: Students studying privately are encouraged to continue on that instrument.  Special Note: Students interested in percussion must audition, regardless of previous experience.

    School Instruments: The school does provide certain large and expensive instruments (i.e., tuba, baritone, French horn, bass clarinet, oboe, bassoon, string bass, etc.). The types and number of these instruments offered is based on class size and progress, financial need, the needs of the ensemble, and school inventory.  We generally do not provide flute, clarinet, saxophone, trumpet, trombone, violin, or viola. The district does have a couple of these instruments but they are intended for families in need. If need exceeds inventory, school instruments will be allotted via lottery.

    For cello players, we can provide an instrument to use at school while the family provides one to use at home (note: I only have full size cellos).

     Logistics: The music building is opened at 7:15-8:15 am in the morning and from 2:31-3:05 pm after school for practicing or assistance. The Music Building closes at 1:40 pm on Wednesdays. Students going to PE can drop off their instruments in the music room before school or before going to PE.  Students on their non-PE day’s can come in and practice between 7:30 am and 8:25 am (much more fun with friends than by yourself) or can sleep in!  Instruments can stay in the music room all day. Instruments should be picked up after school and should go home daily unless arrangements have been made with the music teacher.

     Mr Divita, Music Director, CMS

    Phone 925 606-4702, #6510


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