Why Join Band?
Marching band is more than just another after school activity- it’s an adventure in experiencing a new realm of performance and making new friends. Not only does marching band exercise the mind and body, but it encourages friendships, cultivates creativity, and provides students with a unique opportunity to grow as individuals. The foundations and lessons make it an extremely valuable learning experience for all students who get to experience it. From becoming more disciplined to understanding the complexities of working as a team, here are just a few of the valuable life lessons your child will learn during their time in marching band.
Marching bands are known for being tight-knit communities and are often a second family for many students. Being a part of the marching band not only enables students to be a part of this community, but also helps them learn valuable lessons in empathy, inclusion, and acceptance through the medium of music and the marching arts.
When it comes to marching band, each member is held accountable for certain things. For example, a color guard member is responsible for memorizing their flag work, while a tuba player is responsible for ensuring their instrument is tuned and polished. In being held accountable for their own responsibilities, your child will become a more independent, self-reliant, and responsible member of society.
If you’ve never spent time in a marching band, you might not realize exactly how disciplined marching band members are. Members of the marching band learn to develop the discipline needed to maintain consistent and focused effort throughout a performance. Being able to discipline the mind and body is not only critical in marching band, but critical in life.
One of the best things about marching band is the idea that each individual member is as important as the next. There is a saying among members of the marching arts community that "we're all greater than any one of us." While each member has individual responsibilities, the quality of the performance will always be dependent on each and every member consistently doing their best to perform at the highest level. It is through this process of interdependence and service to one another that your child will hone lifelong skills of collaboration and teamwork.
Marching band is a time-consuming, all-weather sport. Your child will take part in challenging summer rehearsals before school starts in the fall, and at times the activity and performances will be physically demanding. In addition to the physical demands, marching band requires a great deal of consistent mental focus and effort. Even when the going gets tough, marching band members learn to encourage one another to keep going. This endurance can be translated to school projects, employee groups, and interpersonal relationships.
6. Time management
Anyone who has been in marching band can agree that it is a huge time commitment. Between the hours of time spent rehearsing, and the performances at football games, exhibitions, and competitions, finding the time for homework, after-school jobs, and other activities can be difficult. Through all of this, students will quickly learn how to manage their time and find a work-life balance that will be essential as they enter adulthood.
While winning is always the goal, marching band members will learn through competitive performance that winning isn’t everything. Marching up to salute the head judge at a competition only to receive an honorable mention award in front of an entire stadium of people is a memorable lesson in humility. The competitive aspect of marching band allows students to celebrate the marching arts among their peers and appreciate the hard work put in by all of the performing groups. From break-ups to lost jobs, being able to accept outcomes (good or bad) and move on with life is a key lesson to learn.
8. Personal Growth
For students who are especially shy or afraid of performing in front of others, joining a marching band can help calm their fears and boost their self-confidence. Additionally, by sharing in the same experiences and downfalls with a group of like minded individuals, your child will have access to a built-in support system from which they can personally grow and develop. Each time your child takes the stage or gears up for a performance, they’ll gain a little bit more confidence.
As a color guard or marching band member, your child will be expected to present themselves in a professional manner, including a clean, pressed uniform, and impeccable posture. By having to pay close attention to how they present themselves to other people, they’ll feel more prepared for similar situations such as college consultations, job interviews, and any other instance where looking (and acting) their best is essential.
Regardless of whether a student is selected or named to a position of leadership, being in a marching band provides built-in opportunities for students to gain and practice leadership skills. Students will learn what it means to "lead by example" and display the highest standards of excellence in both character and musicianship. Students in named leadership roles will learn all of the responsibilities that come with their position, as well as how to collaborate with a team of peers to better serve the band.