Quick Tips for a Successful
A successful band camp is crucial because in many cases, band students spend as many hours rehearsing at camp as they do rehearsing for the entire fall season. Here are some tips to maximize the effectiveness of your pre-season preparations.
1. Establish Health and Weather Procedures First
- Have a policy for camp about protecting your students' health. Insist that they cover their heads with a hat, etc. Establish a policy for how often and how long water breaks occur and make sure that your instructional staff follow them.
2. Orient Your Staff and Student Leaders Before Camp Begins
- Your teaching staff (if you are blessed enough to have one) and your student leaders need to feel like a cohesive unit even before the camp begins. Be sure to delegate authority to them so they have ownership of the program with you.
3. Establish Routines
- Remember that student retention and energy levels will be greatest just before noon and will be better maintained if you keep rehearsal segments to a maximum of two hours.
4. Build In Some Fun
- Theme days such as Pajama Day, Crazy Hat Day, and other activities at camp can be fun and community-building. Just be sure that the activities do not become a distraction or hamper students' physical movement.
5. Establish Goals
- Create goals for two-hour rehearsal segments, full camp days, camp weeks, and the end of camp. Revise goals as necessary as you work toward them.
Remember, if you don't communicate what is happening and how things are going, your staff, students, and parents will come to their own conclusions based on their own perceptions.
To read more ideas, check out Thomas J. West Music's blog: 10 Quick Tips for a Successful Band Camp
Thanks goes to Thomas J. West Music for letting us use his blog!
Thomas J. West is an active music educator, composer, adjudicator, clinician, and award-winning blogger. http://thomasjwestmusic.com