5th Grade Strings

    Instrument Rental Information:
    Please visit one of the following locations to ensure you are able to rent an instrument. You should also be able to purchase any of the method books assigned below, and the staff can help answer any questions about additional accessories and supplies you will need.

    The Magic Flute
    182 Northgate One, San Rafael CA 94903
    (415) 479-3112

    Marin Music Center
    1559 South Novato Blvd, Novato CA 94947
    (415) 897-4131                  

    Dolce Violins
    1115 Irwin St, Suite 100, San Rafael CA 94901
    (415) 453-1517

    In previous years, the music stores have occasionally run out of books and rental instruments as the fall approaches. Some music stores will allow you to rent an instrument now, without an additional fee for the summer months. Our goal is for every student to be ready to start playing when school begins.

    Please! – Do not purchase low cost instruments from Target, Costco, or discount websites! They are often of very poor quality, may not play properly, and can make learning an instrument frustrating and difficult for students. It is, however, sometimes possible to borrow or purchase used instruments that are of good quality. Please contact us for advice.

    The school district owns a small number of instruments that can be loaned to students for the year. If you are interested in using a district-owned violin or cello, please contact the Orchestra Teacher, Gricelda Calderon. The YES Foundation pays to have each school instrument cleaned and repaired each year. A suggested $50 donation is requested for each loaned instrument to help with its maintenance, but any amount will help with this effort. This donation is completely voluntary and is not required. All discussions will be kept confidential.

    ·         Violin of the correct size, case labeled with student’s name
    ·         Shoulder rest or sponge & elastic band
    ·         Rosin
    ·         String Basics Book 1 for Violin, by Terry Shade
    ·         Pencil (required for every class)
    ·         Highly recommended: “First frets” transfer sticker (helps with finger placement)

    ·         Cello of the correct size, case labeled with student’s name
    ·         Rosin
    ·         Endpin anchor strap (alternative: Rock Stop)
    ·         String Basics Book 1 for Cello, by Terry Shade
    ·         Pencil (required for every class)
    ·         Highly recommended: “First frets” transfer sticker (helps with finger placement)

    Students learning an instrument will also benefit from having a folding music stand for practicing at home.

    It is expected that all fifth graders will set aside 30 minutes to practice their instrument or chorus music per week. Students will have a practice log in their music books or chorus folders to keep track of practice time. Music teachers will check for practice log completion with parent initials each week as part of each student's trimester grade in music. Please help students to schedule consistent times to work on the concepts we cover in class, and help them to set up a dedicated place to practice, where they will not be distracted by other activities.

    Instrument Care:
    Each instrument requires different accessories and maintenance supplies. Directions for instrument care will be included in the method book, and you can also find helpful video instructions for instrument maintenance and cleaning by searching on YouTube. Instruments should always be carried in the case and handled with care. If repairs are needed during the school year, it is critical the instrument be taken to the music store for repairs in a timely manner so that students don’t miss instruction or get behind in class.

    ALL Ross Valley fifth grade strings students are invited to perform at the evening orchestra concerts at White Hill Middle School in February and May.

    Students will wear an RVSD 5th Grade Music t-shirt at all performances. Purchase information will be provided in the fall.

    Fifth grade music students will also perform at daytime assemblies at each school site in December and May/June.