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"Common Times" Weekly Newsletter 1/30-2/3

Upcoming Events

Greetings Wildcat Band Family,

I want to start by reminding our 8th grade band families that there is a meeting in the BHS Band Room at 6:30pm this Tuesday. Mr. Hendrix will talk in depth about the high school band program, what the audition process will look like, how marching band works, exemption options and so much more. Even if your student is currently considering not doing band in high school, I urge you to attend the meeting to learn more and bring your student with you. EVERY year, we have students in the winter slump who change their mind and decide to continue with high school band later this semester who scramble to get this info. Please please plan on attending this 1 hour event.

We had another INCREDIBLE weekend of music making by our all-region band musicians at Bentonville West! We also got to hear the high school all-region jazz bands made up mostly of Bentonville Students and former Wildcats. Fun fact, 66% of all the all-region bands for concert and jazz were made up of Bentonville Students this year. To make up 66% of the bands with 12 other school districts in our region is pretty amazing. You student is truly a part of one of the top 20 programs in the country. This is possible because of your support of your student. It's possible because of the helpful and constant reminders for them to practice on a regular bases, especially when the students are being teens and pre-teens and just don't wanna. Parents and guardians, YOU MATTER in the development and success of your musician through your on going support and sacrifice. Your student may not truly appreciate all you do for them right now, but they will.

This week we have continued work on class solos in 7th grade brass and woodwind classes as well as increasing our technical facility through new scale patterns. We also had some in class assignments on Friday in the flute/saxophone and clarinet class that should have been turned in by the end of the period for my sub while I was out with all-region. These assignments were meant as check ins to see how each individual student is currently doing. There were several in each class that turned nothing in in 80 minutes. Please check in with your student to see if they turned it in. You can also check HAC as grades for those have been posted.

8th grade band has our first check-in of the quarter due on Monday night by 11:59pm. It includes 2 parts: Concert Eb Scale technique from our Habits Book and a section of our concert music (different depending on which instrument they play but posted in google classroom). This assignment was posted last Sunday to give students 8 days to work on it, 10 1/2 hours of at school time to practice/get help and the usual 2 1/2 hours of expected time they should be practicing outside the school day. All parts of the assignment are things we have been working on in class since late December or first week back in January. Nothing new. :) I have reiterated that it is NOT about submitting a video that is perfect, but turning their best effort of these excerpts as they are right now. This helps me to plan pull outs and full band lessons to reteach areas of weakness to help us all get better. To encourage students to get it in on time, there will be a 10% reduction for each day the assignment is turned in late. Students will be able to absolutely redo an assignment if they want a higher grade but it should be turned in on time. Percussion students MUST use the equipment in the band room to record their assignment as most don't have a concert bass drum, marimba, set of timpani, chimes, etc... at home. :) These assignments MUST be recorded per the instructions in google classroom. No in person/live submissions for these check-ins. This is to help students prepare for the high school band placement auditions later this semester.

This Thursday, February 2nd 5:30-8:00pm, we are partnering with Saied Music to provide an opportunity for our students to step up to an intermediate or professional model instrument, head joint, barrel, or mouthpiece at discounted rates. We will have 14 representatives available for families to talk with and plenty of instruments for students to try out. Even if you aren't in the market yet to upgrade your student's instrument, come out, get information to help plan for the future of your student's musical growth and success. You are NOT pressured into buying anything. If you are in the market, great, if you just want more information AWESOME! The Saied reps are just here to help.

8th Grade band and Jazz Band, please remember to be making your spring trip payments. We have 10 partial trips and 30 full trips paid. The cost per student is $330. Please let me know how I can help your family. Since we are competing we need all of our students in the 8th grade band and jazz band there to be successful. Not to mention, just to get to have a lot of fun with friends the week after state testing! :)

Please take a few moment to review the information below so you are fully prepared for the week ahead.

This week:

  • Monday - A Day (Classes 1-4 and Advisory)

    • Band Room Open until 4:30 for students to complete assignments/get help

    • 11:59p - 8th Grade Band Assignment Due

      • Please note that students with IEPs giving them extended time on assignments, will have until Friday to turn it in and still be able to earn full credit.

  • Tuesday - B Day (Classes 6-8 and Priority)

    • Open band during Priority Time

    • Bright Field MS 5th Grade Instrument Fitting

      • If you know a 5th grade student at Bright Field, encourage them to attend the instrument fitting night 5:30-8 and to join band! :)

  • Wednesday - A Day (Classes 1-4 and Priority)

    • Faculty Meeting until 8:27

      • Keep instruments with you and go to gym/commons until bell

    • Flute sectional during priority time with Mrs. Richardson

    • Band Room closes at 4:00pm

  • Thursday - B Day (Classes 5-8 and Priority)

    • Open band during Priority Time

    • Instrument Step-Up Night 5:30-8:00p at WJHS

      • Intermediate models, Pro Level models, gently used instruments, head joints, barrels, mouthpieces and practice marimbas! Come check it out!

      • Parents will park on the back side of the school in the bus loop and enter through the cafeteria doors.

  • Friday - B Day (Classes 5-8 and Engagement Friday)

    • Old High Pep Rally (if we miss more than 1 day of school this week, we will postpone this trip)

      • Complete this form so you get school business for 5th and 6th period.

      • Meet at 7:45am in grey band shirt

      • Bus leaves at 8

    • GOOD LUCK to our forensics team this weekend!!!!!

    • 8th Grade Assignments submitted today will encounter a 40% reduction. Meaning, if they happen to turn in their assignment and get everything correct, the highest grade they can get is a 60%. Please note that students with IEPs giving them extended time on assignments, this would be the last day for them to turn it in and be able to earn full credit.


Current 7th Grade Band Members

Current 8th Grade Band Members

Times will be determined once speaking with XC, Cheer, Dance, Volleyball and Football Coaches so that there aren't any conflicts. Typically, these are 12:30-3:30. For those planning to attend Camp War Eagle, please plan to do one of the early sessions.

July 17th - Expected Beginning of Daily Summer Pride Band Rehearsals (only for those who are in the BHS Pride Marching Band or Color Guard. (Could change depending on start of school dates yet to be released.)

​August 7th- Low Brass and Low Reeds Sectional (Bass Clarinets, Saxophone, French Horns, Trombones, Euphoniums and Tubas)

For full calendar, please see

August 8th - High Woodwinds and High Brass Sectional (Flutes, Clarinets and Trumpets)

August 9th - Percussion Sectional

August 10th - Full Band Rehearsal

August 11th - Full Band Rehearsal


You can find a complete copy of this year's calendar of events here.


PRIVATE LESSONS ARE AWESOME! They are designed to be fun, engaging, supportive and focused on the individual student.

We have an awesome partnership with Arkansas Music Conservatory where your student can take a lesson or two on US to see what private lessons can do for your band student! We have set aside $1150 for lessons this year. We can also help pay for additional lessons and offset the cost of lessons for families who need financial assistance in this area.

Who should take private lessons:

  • Advanced students who need to be pushed and challenged

  • Students who need some 1-on-1 assistance to learn and master concepts covered in class

  • Students who missed substantial class time due to illness

  • Students who just began playing this year

  • Students who want to get better


To sign up for a free lesson:

  • Contact Mr. Jones so he can track who is taking the exploratory lessons

  • Contact Arkansas Music Conservatory to setup a lesson 479-268-3307 (call) or 479-430-2226 (text)


To stay in the know be sure to follow us on your social media platform of choice: Facebook or Instagram - @wjhswildcatband and/or at

If you have any questions or concerns, please never hesitate to reach out. We are partners in your student's growth and need to work together for them to be as successful as possible.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

Musically Yours,

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