Beginning Recorder Band

Here’s a 10-minute video overview of this new course. I asked our Skits cast to fill in for our actual class members, since the class hasn’t met yet!

For ages 9 and up, including parents. Learn to play the recorder, which is one of the simplest to learn of all the instruments. You’ll also be learning the basics of music, such as steady beat, note reading, rhythm, and following the director. Please note that an instrument and a book are required for this course. (Details below)

We regretted canceling our Beginning Band program, but it was just too much to learn on a one-day-a-week schedule. Switching to recorders should solve that problem pretty well by switching to an instrument that’s easier for most to master than are the traditional band instruments. And this helps us in particular in getting students ready for our Homeschool Chorus, where these musician skills are so crucial to have. But even if you’re not headed to chorus, there are many other benefits to learning the recorder in this class. If nothing else, the teacher is really funny. But he’s also very orderly, and this class teaches a good routine of personal discipline as the students must all begin and end together, and so forth. Further, it introduces them to traditional folk melodies that tend to disappear more and more with each passing generation.

Music is a system, of course, and learning any system is great for the mind. Students learning the basics on recorder are in a great position to learn any other instrument later, and to learn it faster, since they’ll already have the basics down. So many who don’t learn to read music when they’re young never pick up the skill later—even though it’s so easy to learn. Learning recorder is easier than learning piano (because you only play one note at a time on recorder), so there’s really no easier way to learn than in this class.


Click here to register ASAP
as space is limited.

A Code of Conduct agreement is required for this course. This helps to ensure the positive environment in each class. This document is being updated and will be published this summer.

Mondays, 9:50 a.m. to 10:40 a.m.
First Semester runs September 14 through our December 15 concert.
Second Semester runs January 11 through through April 26.

We’ll play at least one concert date at the end of each semester, but if things go well, we might also join in to the big Chorus concerts for a number or two–or at least have some of our more advanced players do so. Concert Dates are to be announced. We are shooting for three events in the 2020/2021 school year: 1 in mid-October (October 26th?), 1 in mid-December (December 14th?), and one at the end of the school year, around April 20-26th.

For this course, you’ll need a standard Baroque Recorder, a portable music stand, and the method book listed below. The recorder is available from many manufacturers, but be sure you’re getting a “Baroque” recorder, because there’s more than one kind, and the fingering is different on the others. The one pictured below is the “Lauren” brand, available for $5.99 at Hansen Music in Billings.

Lauren brand Baroque recorders, available at Hansen’s for $5.99. Assorted colors.
Essential Elements Recorder Classroom Method,
available at Hansen’s for $8.99

We have a dress code for our concerts, because we are cool like that! All Recorder Band members are expected to dress in all black as follows:
Boys/Men: Black slacks. Black belt and black shoes. Black long-sleeve, button-down shirts.
Girls/Women: Black bottoms of modest length, whether slacks, skirts, or dresses. Modest black tops, long or short sleeve. Sequins or other sparklies are OK, provided they do not change the color from the basic black look. NOTE: Ballroom gowns are too fancy for this event, and would stick out. Meanwhile, cowboy boots and hats with all black are too un-fancy, and would stick out in the opposite way!

30 students

This course meets, as do all our courses, in the We, Montana! Great Room.

Jack Pelham

This course is part of our Homeschool Program. You’ll find our fee structure detailed here.