Monday Morning Mustang Memo

Information, News, and Updates for the 7th/8th Grade Bands

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Week 28: March 23-29, 2020

COVID-19 Online Learning, Week 1

Online Learning Reminders

If you are in need of technology, please fill out the district technology form!

The district is handing out free meals to students at Dobbs and Rochell elementary schools every Monday through Friday, free of cost, to all students from 11am-1pm through April 3rd.

Continue to check all emails from the district. If you have not received district correspondence, please update your contact information in Skyward.

Please continue to give ALL of your teachers some grace and patience as we move forward. This is all brand new to all of us and we are all doing everything in our power to make Social Distancing as easy as possible for you.

Band-Specific Online Learning Reminders

Each week on Monday morning, your child's band director will post all of the band assignments for the week as well as a weekly video. This week's assignments and videos are already posted!

Please keep an eye out for Google Classroom and Remind for any daily updates. As the situation continues to develop and the district learns, we will keep you as in the loop as possible regarding what we know.

Your weekly band assignments will have a "required" section as well as an "additional" assignment. We cannot require anything that is not sent from the district to complete; however, these additional items are listed for your benefit!

Your recordings do not have to be perfect! There are no real "grades" at this time - we wish to hear your best effort just as if we are in class listening to you play.

Percussion: You also have a 2nd Google Classroom for your percussion-specific assignments courtesy of Mr. Kosterman. So, watch the weekly video in your band Google Classroom first, then complete the assignments listed in your Percussion Google Classroom.

Please read and use the comments we post on your individual assignments. We will give you feedback to help you best develop as musicians!

Please let your child's band director know if you or your child need anything at all! We are here for our band family!

If your child is having difficulty accessing our band Google Classrooms, please let us know today!

Spring Semester Updates

As of Monday morning, here are the latest schedule updates:

  • UIL Contest has been canceled for this year
  • Dallas Winds Invitational has been canceled for this year
  • All Spring Festival performances have been canceled for this year
  • The Spring Concert is tentative
  • Solo Contest is tentative

As our Spring Semester continues to develop, we will keep you informed through the memo and with our online calendar.

Click here to view/subscribe to the Cain Band calendar

This includes all events, rehearsals, sectionals, and activities for the entire band program all year, and is updated frequently!

Band Aide Application - Deadline Extended

If your 7th grade band student is interested in serving as a band-aide next year, please have them complete and submit the Band Aide application by Friday, May 1st.

Who to Contact

If you have questions, concerns, or need additional information, please contact your child's band director:

Mr. Ousey -

  • Honors Band

Mr. Prior -

  • Symphonic Band
  • Concert Band
  • Jazz Band

Mr. Kosterman -

  • All Percussion

If you need to reach your child's private lesson teacher, please visit to locate their email or phone number.

Remind Text Alerts - Class Code Reminder

Still need to sign up for the Remind?

  • Honors Band Woodwinds: @cmshbww
  • Honors Band Brass/Percussion: @cmshbbap
  • Symphonic Band Woodwinds: @cmssbww
  • Symphonic Band Brass/Percussion: @cmssbbap
  • Concert Band Woodwinds: @cmscbww
  • Concert Band Brass/Percussion: @cmscbbap

Text your group's remind code to the phone number 81010 to sign up. You may also use the Remind app. Use the code above to search and join the class.

Social Media Accounts

Please consider following our official Cain Band social media accounts:

If you are not receiving Charms emails, please contact Mr. Ousey.

Private Lessons

We HIGHLY ENCOURAGE families who take private lessons to communicate with their teachers and work to the best of their ability to continue lessons remotely through Skype, Facetime, or work at home lessons.

If you feel that you are uncomfortable in this situation, then we suggest "donating" your normal lesson fees and working with your teacher to reschedule as necessary. This suggestion is for your discretion.

We want to make sure that you are aware that teaching privately in many cases is the only source of income for many of our teachers. Any week/day that school is canceled directly impacts their livelihood. Our teachers also have families, mortgages, rent, bills, and groceries to purchase. Please keep this in mind when making your decisions.

If you want to ensure your child will not fall behind, we STRONGLY encourage online private lessons! Please contact us if you have not heard from your child's private teacher.

Instrument Cleaning and Health

Continue to monitor your child and reinforce proper instrument cleaning and maintenance. A well-maintained instrument will collect fewer germs and keep your child from getting sick.

Upon returning to school, the band will be in need of new reeds and instrument-safe sanitizing spray. If you are able, we would greatly appreciate your donation of some of these items.

We have updated our band Amazon Wish List to include these items:

We also sent out a detailed newsletter on how to properly clean your child's instrument back in the early winter. Here is the link to that newsletter:

If you have any questions, concerns, or need clarification, please contact your child's band director.

Need the Instrument Supply List with Links?

Click the button above and scroll down in last week's memo the list of supplies with Amazon links. Contact your child's band director if you have any questions.


Over this extended break, it is imperative that every student spend time practicing their instrument. Playing an instrument requires focus on very small muscles that need to be exercised daily as well as muscle memory that will diminish if not practiced over time. The success of the entire band program depends on every student focusing at least 30 minutes each day on playing their instrument.

What should my child have at home?

  • Instrument
  • Band Binder and any concert music
  • Pencil
  • Tuner/Metronome
  • Music stand
  • Sturdy chair

What should my child practice?

Every child has lots of resources and materials in their binder to practice. A typical, efficient practice routine should be split into 5 parts:

  1. Tone Development: (5 mins) Long tones, Nelson warmups, play low and slow.
  2. Flexibility: (5 mins) Lip slurs, octave slurs, vibrato exercises, register key exercises, interval studies
  3. Technique Development: (5 mins) Scales, scale patterns, articulation and rhythm studies. Can be found in Nelson Technique Packets, scale sheets, any rhythm sheets. Scales should be practiced in ALL ranges of the instrument!
  4. Sight Reading: (5 mins) Sight reading is when you play a piece of music for the first time without prior practice. Concert Band students can use the Essential Elements book to practice. Symphonic and Honors students can use any of the Nelson Sight Reading or Herring Sight Reading packets. Spend 30 seconds to silent practice a line, then play one time through without stopping.
  5. Literature: (10 mins) Concert music, Solo Contest Music, and other music. Honors Band students should focus on their "Top 5" - spend this time focusing on the materials that are the weakest. Really pinpoint places that need improvement and break them down into smaller, bite-sized chunks to practice. Start slow and then gradually work up to speed. Be VERY detailed - focus first on notes and rhythms, then add in articulations, then add in the musical side of things (vibrato, style, and dynamics). Once all parts are perfected, then put them into context and play the entire segment or the entire piece. 10 minutes of hyper-focused musical practice will way farther than 30 minutes of running through the music.

Visit the band website!

The latest news, calendar, and information about the Mighty Mustang Band.

Contact the Mustang Band

If you have questions, please feel free to contact us! We will make every effort to return your call or email within 24 hours.

Band Hall Hours

  • M-Th: 7AM - 5:30PM
  • Friday: 7AM - 4:30PM