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Orchestra Class Handbook

Grading Policies

Practice Logs



Concert Uniforms

Grading Policies

Grading Policies


Orchestra is an academic course with specific Core Knowledge, National Music Standards and State Music Standards guidelines. Poudre School District Middle Schools utilize Standards-Based Grading to calculate each student's progress and growth. Therefore, each student's grades in Orchestra will be tied to one of these four Colorado Music Standards*:

1. Expression of Music

The expression of music is the demonstration of human thought and emotion through the medium of performance, which is a product of knowledge and skills gained in the study of music

 2. Creation of Music

The creation of music is the demonstration of learned skills in the composition, improvisation, and arranging of music. Creating music involves writing music, fashioning new music from an existing piece of music, or forming an entirely new piece of music. 

3. Theory of Music

The theory of music is the understanding of the distinctive language, conventions, mechanics, and structure of organized sound. Investigation of music theory allows for a more complete understanding of all aspects of the musical process, including musical performance and composition. 

4. Response to Music

The value of music focuses on the knowledge needed to make an informed evaluation and to provide a well-thought-out critique about a musical piece. It also addresses the beauty, heart, and soul: the aesthetics of music. Valuing music will permit individuals to distinguish between a scholarly and an individual judgment of music.


Poudre School District Middle Schools also differentiate assignments by categorizing them as either summative or formative assessments.  Simply stated, a summative assessment should be an assessment of learning whereas a formative assessment should be an assessment for learning or even as  learning. For more explanation of the different assessment types, see this article from Carnegie Mellon University: What is the difference between formative and summative assessment?

Practice Logs

Practice Logs

Practice Logs are the primary form of homework in Orchestra and are a formative assessment. The rationale for this is to emphasize and evaluate the quality of music practice in addition to the quantity.

Practice Logs are submitted as responses to the Google Form posted each week in the students' Google Classroom for Orchestra. Practice Logs should record each student's practice from Monday through Sunday of each week and are DUE on the following Monday morning by 8:15 a.m. Students should submit this form every week, regardless of the quantity or quality of their practice. In the case of a student's extended illness, injury, or travel, accommodations may be made. Please use the online Google form to communicate such concerns to Mrs. Griffey. No late logs will be accepted! (There will occasionally be "Optional Weeks" which can be used to replace a previous missing or low grade within the same grading period.)

Grading of practice logs is based on the following rubric:

Kinard Orchestra Practice Log Grading Rubric

Concert Uniform Information

Concert Uniform Information

All students have a required concert uniform that they must wear for concerts and performances.

6th Grade Beginning & Concert (7th Grade)Orchestra:

1. Cardinal red Kinard Orchestra long-sleeve t-shirt tucked in (will be ordered in the fall for new students).

2. Black (or very dark-color) pants or skirt (below knee length); no rips or tears, please.

3. Clean, neat shoes (sneakers or nice athletic shoes OK - please no flip flops)


Concerts celebrate and demonstrate students' learning over a period of time. To perform music for an audience is one of the greatest experiences of learning music! Concerts teach students how to prepare for a long term goal, how to cope with nervousness, to follow directions, appropriate behavior at formal concerts, and how to critically listen to other performers. It is not possible to replace or "make-up" a concert experience due to the unique aspects listed above. Therefore, all concerts are required. Please find a list of Kinard Orchestra concerts here. If there is a concern about a student's ability to participate in a concert, please inform Mrs. Griffey as soon as this concern arises.


Symphony & Philharmonia Orchestra:

As our advanced orchestras at Kinard, these ensembles are more visible as we perform more frequently than other ensembles and occasionally travel outside of our Kinard community to perform. We wear a uniform that reflects the higher level of achievement and commitment to performance these students have as well as their higher level of maturity and focus. The uniform is chosen to look simple and more consistent, thereby helping our audience or judges to focus on our playing skills instead of our attire. It is also chosen to help us look professional, prepared, and polished. 

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