A few weeks ago, a friend on Facebook stated that her child was going to band camp. I asked already? Not only that, I wasn’t sure if kids were going to be going to band camp due to Coronavirus-19.
She shared a picture of her young son with his face mask on holding an instrument case. I fondly remember band camp and marching band.
In the south, football is king. You are either on the football team, a cheerleader, in the band, or a spectator. With the shut-down due to COVID-19 will the marching band recover for 2020? Included are 7 things that students will miss out in 2020 due to Coronavirus-19.
Why is marching band important?
For one, it is a way for many students to practice their performance. Yes, the uniforms might be a bit old school, but it as opportunity to showcase their talents. You get an opportunity to experience what it is like to work on a team, just as you in a work environment.
You learn that one person isn’t the star and that there are featured artists but without the others in the band, it isn’t going to be successful.
It is a way to stay out of trouble
Some towns have little activities for teenagers. Marching band allows for good, clean fun to occur. It can decrease the number of incidences where kids might be going observing illegal activities such as the use of drugs and alcohol.
It provides a respite for parents
During marching band season, parents can feel confident that their child is getting out the house – and out of their hair. But more importantly, it is a safe environment where they will be watched by their peers and adult chaperones.
It strengths a young person’s character
There is nothing more strange than watching a performance and noticing a post where a member is missing. While kids shouldn’t perform if they are ill, it does provide some lessons in character. Students know that if they don’t show up, they are an integral cog in the wheel and it won’t work right. It also requires them to perform in a variety of settings including heat, cold, rain, and snow. Adults know that the weather isn’t an excuse to stay home from work.
It is a way to escape
Parents have a hard time balancing work, family, home, and other responsibilities. Some parents also have limited opportunities to take their children on vacations. Even a get away for an evening or a day can be financially straining. Away games are available as an outlet for perhaps an overnight trip to a competition or just going to an away game on a charter bus. Many budding musicians have their first taste of being on the road during these events.
It can lead to greater things
Marching band competition, parades, and overseas travels are oftentimes included. I went to New York and was in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade during my junior year of high school. It was an experience I will never forget. I still have pictures and memories of my friends and I traveling and seeing things we wouldn’t dream of. I did return to NY a decade later and it was like the experience happened yesterday.
In addition, musicians oftentimes learn different instruments and skills during marching band season which encourages them to continue learning and improving their skills. Consider adding an additional instrument to your child’s repertoire with music lessons.
It gives them a sense of pride
The ability to play a musical instrument is a feat in itself. Many young kids struggle with depression and feeling like they aren’t good enough. Music is a great way for a budding musician to learn about a hidden talent. While you might want to rip your hair out listening to scales all day long, support them on their journey of self-discovery.
It can provide their first taste of leadership
Drum majors, sections leaders, or solos are a gateway in future leadership positions. Without band, many college freshmen enter without the leadership needed that today’s employers are searching for.
While I understand the need to cancel or postpone school events due to COVID-19, I hope that we find a vaccine and a cure soon. I would hate for students to miss out on an opportunity of a lifetime.