Grading and Expectations

In the Aspen School District, Band is a curricular, graded, for-credit course. As such, there are certain standards expected of all students (as there are in every other class). In addition, students are graded on a variety of criteria.

Performance – 25%
Utilizing our SmartMusic software, we are able to do weekly performance assessments for students.  This software allows students to see immediately what they play correctly and incorrectly.  A student’s performance is saved via cloud recording into an individual portfolio.  Students, parents, and teachers can all monitor progress from this software.

Preparation – 40%
To ensure that students are bringing their materials to class, each student will earn up to four daily preparation points.  Students earn one point each for having their instrument, method book, pencil, and being ready to play when class begins.

Participation – 25%
Students are expected to follow a certain set of guidelines while in the classroom.  Students are asked to reflect on their participation and assign themselves this grade.  Periodically, students’ participation grades will be updated to reflect their choices in class.  Here is the Participation Rubric.

Concert Attendance – 10%
Performances are a required part of any performing arts class. Attendance is mandatory. Absences from performances must be arranged at least one month in advance and be approved by a director.  Absences due to last-minute emergencies (severe illness, death in the family, etc.) will be excused.  An unexcused absence from a performance will result in the loss of these points.  There is a hold-harmless policy regarding this criterion in fifth grade.


  • Arrive to class on time. (In the Band Room when passing period ends)
  • Set up chair and stand
  • Set up equipment (materials & instruments) in the Band Cave and be ready to play five minutes after class begins.
  • Have your equipment in class in good playing condition.
  • Woodwinds: Always have at least two reeds broken in and ready to play
  • Brass: Keep your valves lubricated and be ready with mutes or other accessories when appropriate.
  • Percussion: Set up equipment for rehearsal repertoire at the beginning of class. Have appropriate sticks and mallets in your possession.
  • Participate in Daily Warm-up Exercises
  • Participate in Daily Performance Repertoire Rehearsal by following along with group activities and playing when directed to do so
  • Put forth your best effort with posture, tone production, blending, balance, expressiveness, etc.
  • Prepare for rehearsal by establishing a regular at home practice schedule
  • Pay attention to instruction directed at your section and at others
  • Avoid excessive talking/playing/hacking during instruction
  • Remain in your assigned area and be ready to play throughout the rehearsal
  • Be cooperative with the director and other ensemble members in all rehearsal situations
  • Remain seated and attentive through the end of rehearsal
  • Pack up and store all of your equipment including instruments, binders, mutes, and miscellaneous papers in the appropriate areas