Elementary Bands

This page is for students/ parents attending Julia Morgan and John Muir Elementary Schools. It will provide scheduling information, important forms/ documents and policies.


Here is a brief overview of how the Elementary Band Programs work:

A. 5th and 6th Students are pulled out of class for rehearsal twice a week for 40 minutes total each rehearsal.

B. 5th grade band members are split into woodwinds + mallets and brass + battery. Each group is seen for 20 minutes of instruction and 20 minutes of practicing/ classwork. This system allows beginners to get as much individual attention as possible and, overall, will allow for faster growth.

C. 6th grade band members are those who have played their instrument for one  or more years or who have played in the 5th grade band.

D. There are three evening performances total per year: the Winter Concert, the Cluster Concert and the Spring Concert.

E. A student studying music is required to practice daily. This is their homework alongside worksheets and other assignments. Practice sheets are due every month along with the accompanying theory worksheet. The director may do random practice sheet checks to assess whether students are doing what is expected.

F. Playing tests are used to assess progress and ensure that students are progressing according to their practice sheets.

G. With enough hard work and perseverance, many of the students in these programs will continue into the award-winning Christa McAuliffe Middle School band program.



     Informational packets and registration forms will be sent home with your child during the first or second week of school. Upon return of the registration forms by the given deadline, parents will be emailed with important information regarding registering for Remind, the instrument selection process and much more. Students meet with Mr. Fonzi one on one to be tested during their assigned band time. After the proper instrument is selected for the student, rental information, supplies and more are discussed and we are ready to move forward!


     Our program is a comprehensive, layered sequence which allows for incredible growth and success- especially for students who begin in 5th grade! Here is an outline of the educational sequence students undertake in our program:

5th Grade Beginning Band

      In this class, students are introduced to basic musical concepts such as posture, breathing, articulation, note reading, and much more. Students in this class are beginners who progress rather quickly in small groups. These young musicians work their way up from playing chorally/ in unison to playing basic harmonies and melody/ accompaniment. They begin to play in more of a full band setting by the end of the year.

6th Grade Intermediate Band

     This class picks up where the beginning band class left off. In 6th grade, students begin to move faster and expand their technical skills while refining their musicianship. The focus shifts to more independence in playing as students begin to work through more complex musical challenges. Students are prepared to audition for the award-winning CMMS Wind Ensemble by the end of the year. Many of the students who audition are placed in the middle school program and continue to thrive in music.

CMMS Concert Band

     Concert Band is often a student’s first experience with having band as a daily class. It is a regular part of the school day and each rehearsal lasts 55 minutes total. The Concert Band is a very diverse class; some students attempt to play an instrument for the first time and others are preparing themselves to move forward into wind ensemble, jazz ensemble or any of the other musical ensembles we offer at CMMS. Students work hard in Concert Band to achieve the excellence in performance our program is known for, and many of these students move forward into the award-winning Wind Ensemble.

CMMS Wind Ensemble

     Wind Ensemble is an audition only group comprised of some of the best young musicians in the county. In 2018, this ensemble competed at the Music in the Parks festival in San Jose and brought home our schools first ever “Superior” rating, First Place in our division and the highest score for a middle school in LUSD history. The expectations are raised each year as our program continues to grow and develop into one known for superior performance and quality music education.

This group is a premier performing group which plays at an advanced level. Students are challenged to achieve results consistent with some of the best bands in the state of California. Many students in this ensemble go on to join the Bear Creek High School band program and experience wonderful success in music, school and life.

BCHS Band Program

     The Bear Creek High School band program is an award-winning program directed by Joe Sandoval. Mr. Sandoval is largely regarded as one of the best teachers in our district, having earned the distinction of “Teacher of the Year” in 2015. He is a passionate educator who has been at the center of the effort to continually keep music in our schools and guide his students to live successful, fulfilling lives.

The Bear Creek High School band program currently has a Jazz Ensemble, Symphonic Band, Beginning Band and Pep Band. A marching band may be fully re-established within the next few years. For more information on the BCHS band program, please contact Mr. Sandoval at jsandoval@lodiusd.net.



Current Practice Sheet- August

Current Theory Sheet- The Staff

Elementary Bands Calendar of Events

Julia Morgan Remind

John Muir Remind