Winter Season 2024!
We are so happy to have you as a member of this program! Our vision is for the entire band and guard community to work together to develop life-applicable skills and lifelong memories in a safe, respectful, and engaging environment. Music inspires us. It provides us with experiences and memories that we will never forget. Add teamwork, motivation, and passion, and this program will go as far as we want it to go. The staff and I are ready to continue this amazing journey towards success, and we want YOU to be a part of it.
Please make sure you read through this handbook, as it contains important information, especially for new members. Please refer to these resources as often as your can to be aware of the schedule, expectations, and more!
Please register here:
to: 1) confirm your commitment to the program and 2) acknowledge receipt of the student handbook. Please check the Monthly Events on our website to make sure you don't have any significant conflicts. Please register ASAP so that we can ensure we have up-to-date contact information and to confirm participation in the program.
NHS Band Director
NPS Fine Arts Coordinator
Parents are asked to volunteer in at least one major event during the season: a parade, fundraiser, concert, or competition. We have a fantastic parent group called the Greyhound Band Association. If you are interested in participating in our parent program and contributing to critical decision-making processes, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Early Season Practices
Introduction to Marching Band/Winter Percussion, Winter Guard. Here, we develop fundamental techniques for our music and visual program. Practices run from 5:45pm-9:15pm at NHS. The additional 15 minutes on each end of rehearsal is dedicated to set up and break down so that the entire team can get 3 hours of quality practice in. To be early is to be on time! Winter Guard practices will mostly take place in one of the gyms. Marching Band and Winter Percussion will start in the NHS Music Wing. Members will have multiple opportunities to test the waters. They will meet the staff, parent volunteers, and other members, as well as receive music and other resources needed to master our competitive programs. Check out the Monthly Events on this site for practice dates and times.
FUNdamentals Camp (Marching Band - June)
This 5-day camp is a chance for students to learn from Music Education Majors and Music Teachers about the fundamentals of their instrument and music literacy. All band students are encouraged to attend, especially new members, because it's a great transition from intermediate school to middle school, or middle school to high school. We'll throw in fun activities and new music to make sure there's something for everyone. This will occur from 9am-12pm June 19, 20, 21, 22, and 23 with a show and tell at the end of the last day. There is a participation fee for FUNdamentals camp to cover the cost of the extra staff that we hire for the 12 hours of instruction throughout the week. The fee is $10 a day. Checks can be made to Greyhound Band Association. We also accept cash.
Summer Practices (Marching Band)
The NHS Music Wing and the practice lot will be available Tuesdays and Thursdays throughout the summer from 6pm-9pm leading up to Band Camp. Color Guard will practice every Thursday starting June 8th until Band Camp. Winds and Percussion will practice every Thursday in July. During this time, we continue to define and refine our music and visual technique by advancing through the show music, music warm-ups, and visual blocks/choreography. **We understand summer is summer, so we ask that you please make the effort to come to practices if you are not away on vacation.**
Regular Season Practices (Marching Band, Winter Percussion, Winter Guard)
These practices run from 5:45pm-9:15pm every Tuesday and Thursday. The attendance policy will be in effect from Band Camp until the end of the season for Marching Band, and after winter break for Winter Guard and Winter Percussion. We grow together, and in this activity, one absence can negatively affect several members in a drill form and/or musical phrase.
Once a week, student-led practices allow students to work on their show music or visual technique with their instrumental section one hour before the official practice starts. Sectionals are an excellent way for students to bond with their section and provide/apply individualized feedback before joining the rest of the ensemble at 6pm.
Parades (Marching Band)
One way to support our community is by participating in parades. We usually march in 3: Naugatuck Veterans Day, Ansonia Memorial Day (Sunday), and Naugatuck Memorial Day (Monday). These performances are required as a member of the Marching Band program. Dates and times for the 2023-2024 parades will be announced as soon as we get details from the parade officiants.
Football Games (Marching Band)
We perform at every home game in the fall. On the days when the Greyhound Band Association runs the concessions booth (usually 2-3 games), the band stays for the entire game. Otherwise, we will leave right after the halftime show. We will always perform at halftime because it is an excellent way to 1) promote the activity to the community and 2) prepare for the competition the following day.
Typical Game Schedule:
Dates TBA - 5:45pm arrival - 7pm start (may stay until Quarter 3 or for the whole game, depending on who's running the concessions booth that night)
We will update the website and send a parentsquare once we know the fall football home game schedule.
Here’s a list to help you be prepared for all practices:
What to wear? (Appropriate for weather)
- Comfortable sneakers with socks (No flip flops or sandals – including pit students)
- Comfortable athletic gear (no jeans)
What to bring?
- Music – all of it – all of the time
- Instrument and accessories for maintenance (valve oil, grease, etc)
- 3-ring binder with sheet protectors (for show music/drill)
- Pencil (edit music and drill)
- Dot book – provided by Greyhound Band Association
- Water only in the band room. No “sugared” beverages are allowed. No eating in the band room. Let's keep the ants out!
Band Camp (Marching Band)
A successful Band Camp leads to a successful season! Here, every member works together to learn the entire competitive show, musically and visually. All members must commit to this camp so we start the season at full speed.
Aug. 7-11 and Aug. 14-18
- 8:30 am-12 pm Block 1
- 12 pm-1 pm Lunch
- 1 pm-4:30 pm Block 2
Advice: Eat a healthy breakfast every day. Apply sunscreen before you arrive to practice. Apply appropriate lotion for sunburn, if applicable, at night. Stretch before bed. Drink water frequently. Set two alarms. Mark sure you have a ride/ask for a ride if you need one.
Saturday Competitions (Marching Band, Winter Percussion, Winter Guard)
Show Day Run Down
Practice Before Travel: Saturday practices typically start at 10am, depending on our afternoon or evening performance time. If a practice ever needs to start sooner or later, we will be sure to send out an update in advance via REMIND (Text this number: 81010 and type this message: @greymarch to receive instant updates) REMIND will be used for quick, instant updates such as last minute cancellations, emergency notifications, and important reminders. ParentSquare will be used for longer messages and important information throughout the year.
Students should pack a lunch or have someone bring them lunch to eat before leaving for the show. After lunch, all members clean and service their instruments/equipment. Then, they get into “halves”. This is the halfway point before being in full Class A Uniform. Halves dress is for the musicians in the ensemble: a black t-shirt, black tall socks, black undergarments, the pants of the Class A uniform, and marching shoes/gloves. The Color Guard uses this time to prepare and change into their show uniform. The uniform top for musicians should be hung nicely in the garment bag and brought onto the bus with the shako/head wear for that season, instrument, and a separate packed bag with the Class B uniform, extra layers, extra snacks or water, and/or money for food following the performance. More info on Class B jackets To Be Announced.
Students are expected to be on their best behavior at all times.
Under no circumstances may students leave the competition site without prior parental written request and subsequent director approval.
Class A Uniform: Traditional uniform seen on the field during competitions and parades. All hair must be up and invisible under the shako (headwear). The students are responsible for hair elastics, bobby pins, snap-clips, or headbands required to make this happen. For Winter Percussion and Winter Guard, the Class A uniform is determined based on the theme of the show for that season.
Marching shoes should have your name, in permanent marker, written on the inside of the shoe. Black socks must be pure black. No stripes, symbols, etc. Socks must be tall. Undergarments are black. Includes: T-shirts (no tank tops/cutoffs), shorts, thermals, & socks. Athletic wear works best; no jeans material is to be used.
Here's the Winter Competition Schedule:
2/3 - Masuk HS (Winter Guard)
2/10 - Westhill HS (Winter Guard)
2/17 - East Haven HS (Winter Guard)
2/24 - Naugatuck HS (Winter Guard and Winter Percussion)
3/2 - Newtown HS (Winter Guard and Percussion)
3/9 - New Milford HS (Winter Percussion)
3/16 - Bunnell HS (Winter Guard)
4/4 - NHS Friends and Family Night (Thursday, 6pm)
4/6 - Trumbull HS (Winter Guard Championships)
4/6 - Shelton HS (Winter Percussion)
4/13 - Westhill HS (Winter Percussion Championships)
4/28 - PAS Day of Percussion (Winter Percussion)
- The director and instructors will carry cell phones for necessary communication. The band director will carry emergency contact forms and medical forms. The parent volunteers will always carry a first aid kit.
- Before the performance, students must always remain with their sections. Percussion, guard, and winds will often be separated and designated to different areas at the warm-up site.
- Chaperones will accompany the team and assist as needed. Upon arrival at the performance site, chaperones will follow the field's end zone to the home stands for band viewing.
- The front ensemble crew will assemble the pit and will subsequently move away from the competition field to the home stands. Upon completion of the performance, the students in the front ensemble will assist the crew in loading the truck.
- After the performance, students return to the busses to change into Class B uniforms and pick up extra layers and/or money or food. Then chaperones will watch over members as they watch other bands’ performances and the award ceremony.
- Students must always travel with a buddy (a “2”) if they leave the area to go to the bathroom or buy a souvenir or food/drink. They cannot leave without notifying a chaperone or staff member.
- While students are watching other schools, the staff is either listening to judges' tapes or talking to the judges at the feedback meeting.
- After retreat/awards, students will return to the buses, where the chaperones will account for attendance.
- Then, we take the bus back to NHS, where parents/guardians will wait to pick up their child on time. We will have the students call/text home to notify when we are close to the high school.
Equipment Care and Maintenance
Students are responsible for the care, cleaning, and continual maintenance of their equipment. Each student is responsible for always ensuring the equipment is in perfect working condition. Please be sure it is oiled, cleaned, polished, and checked professionally to ensure it is in working order.
There is a limited number of school equipment that is loaned to students. There is also a rental fee for wind instruments that belong to the school. Any damage to equipment due to misuse or negligence will be billed to the student. The students are responsible for properly caring for all equipment, including purchasing reeds, oiling, cleaning, and polishing.
Students are responsible for purchasing their reeds from local music retailers. All reed players (clarinets, all saxophones, and bass clarinets) should come to rehearsal with two reeds. Students who do not have a reed can purchase one in the band room for $3.00. This money goes towards the Naugatuck Public Music account to support the band with more reeds and other essential items.
These instruments should have valve oil and slide grease. Instruments should be cleaned twice a year in a sink/tub. All parts should be in good working order.
The band program provides all percussion instruments, but each student is responsible for their assigned instruments and care. Students must have sticks and mallets at every rehearsal. They are part of your instrument, as they cannot be played without them. Extra sticks are provided to students at $10 per pair.
It is everyone’s responsibility to keep the band room clean and neat. Instruments must be put away in their assigned area. Only water is allowed in the band room. No food or drinks.
Student Leaders are a great resource to students as they can assist in answering many questions you will have. (i.e. – Are we rehearsing in the band room or the parking lot? When do I get my uniform? What time will we be getting home?). These questions and many more can and should be answered by the student leaders. If a student leader can’t answer a question, they will bring it to the Drum Majors or the Director. The leadership chain is set up this way, from Section Leader to Drum Major to Band Director, to allow rehearsals to run smoothly without interruption or confusion.
are responsible for taking care of an instrumental section. Students earn the right to be Leaders through an application process considering their leadership qualities, participation in band activities, and attitude. These leaders will assist their instrumental group with show music, marching, and other administrative responsibilities.
Guard Captains (Marching Band)
are the student leaders of the color guard. These leaders will run ‘sectionals’ to assist the guard with the weapon and flag work. The captains are also responsible for ensuring that all students are prepared for rehearsals and competitions, including checking to make sure that all students have all necessary uniforms, hair, and makeup for competitions, as well as their equipment. They are also required to stop by the band room occasionally to check in with the band director for updates and check the scheduled upcoming events on the whiteboard to ensure all the information regarding events, fundraisers, rehearsals, etc., is communicated efficiently to the guard.
are the marching band’s student conductors. The band director/assistant band director cannot be on the field with the students while performing at competitions; student leaders must direct them. The Drum Majors are responsible for getting to rehearsal half an hour early each evening to set up the field with the podiums, cones, and field markers. Drum Majors, the director, and staff will run many elements of our rehearsals. The students must follow all instructions given by the Drum Major. The band director and the drum majors work closely to ensure things operate smoothly. Students must trust that the Drum Majors will do what is in the band's best interest.
Absences may impact a student’s earned credit and/or future participation. Even if just one student is absent, it adversely affects the ensemble’s ability to practice effectively. Unlike other competitive activities, we do not have subs to put in when a student is absent.
For the ensemble to be successful, all students must be present and on time every time. Some advice: arrive 10-15 minutes before practice begins. This allows you to gather all necessary equipment/information and be ready to start practice on time.
If you have an extenuating circumstance and must be absent, a form must be submitted before the absence, and your section leader should be notified.
In the event of a last-minute unavoidable emergency, you must notify your director.
Missing multiple rehearsals and/or a performance is subject to immediate dismissal from the group.
- Students must be on time and present at all practices and performances
- Performances include football games, parades, competitions, and concerts.
- Excused absences may include illness, death in the family, school-sponsored trip, game/performance in lieu of a practice
- Illness is only excused with a doctor's note
- Attendance in school is defined as a student being present for four hours in a given day. A member will not be allowed to attend or participate in a practice or performance that day if they are absent from school.
- similarly, a student who leaves early due to illness will not be allowed to attend or participate in a practice or performance that day/night.
- A student suspended from school is also suspended from team practices/performances for the duration of the suspension.
Students who ARE LATE UP TO THREE TIMES, miss an unexcused performance, or MISS three unexcused practices will be:
- Asked to meet with the director and their parents/guardians to discuss future participation on the team
- Denied the extra 1.0 credit if enrolled at NHS
- May be asked to sit out of a performance depending on how much was missed in preparation of that performance. If that's the case, students must still attend the event.
Credit and Behavior Policies
Fine Arts Credit
NHS Students who successfully complete a competitive season without being late more than three times, missing an unexcused performance, or missing three unexcused practices will be awarded 1 full fine arts credit if enrolled at NHS (per season).
- Students must be respectful at all times to the staff, ensemble members, and volunteers.
- Do not use or be in possession of any controlled substances, drugs, or alcohol
- Keep away from equipment/instruments that do not belong to you. Stay in your assigned area at all times
- Treat others with respect
- Attend all activities unless a legitimate reason has been communicated to the director
- Honor all team rules established by the staff
- Maintain appropriate academic standing
- Report any injuries that took place on-site to the director immediately
- Use appropriate language at all times; profanity is not welcome
- Be your best self!
Students WHO disrupt the learning environment, engage in behavior that is against NPS policy, or do not meet our behavior expectations will incur the following repercussions:
- First offense - student will receive a verbal/written warning
- Second offense - temporary suspension from the program (all rehearsals & performances) until a meeting is held with the student, student’s parents, band director, and an administrator (this can also happen on the first offense, depending on the severity)
- Third offense - student may be dismissed from the competitive program (this can also happen on the first or second offense, depending on the severity)
Resources, Communication, and Monthly Events:
Registration for Winter 2024:
Saturday Dec 9 - Winter Guard Practice 10-4
Tuesday Dec 12 - Winter Concert 7pm
Tuesday Dec 12 - Winter Guard Practice 6-9 (no Winter Percussion)
Thursday Dec 14 - Winter Guard and Winter Percussion Practice 6-9
Saturday Dec 16 - Winter Guard and Winter Percussion Practice 10-4
Tuesday Dec 19 - Winter Guard and Winter Percussion Practice 6-9
Thursday Dec 21 - Winter Guard and Winter Percussion Practice 6-9
Winter Break!!! Next practice Is January 2nd