• Frequently Asked Questions
    (Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about the string program.)

    When do lessons begin?
    Orchestra Lessons will begin the third week of school.  I will place the students into small groups according to each student's schedule so that he or she is not pulled out of math, communication arts, GOAL, or any other important conflict. 

    Is it too late for my child to begin lessons?

     While most students decide to participate in orchestra at the end of the previous school year, we are more than happy to welcome students who decide to join orchestra in the fall.  If you are new to the area in the fall, we would love to have your child participate. While we typically start orchestra lessons in the third grade, fourth and fifth graders are more than welcome to start instruction on an instrument. 

    What is the cost for my child to participate?

    There is no fee to participate in the orchestra program. The only costs involved are renting/purchasing an instrument from a vendor, method book, and extra supplies (shoulder rests, rosin, strings....) For any instrument rental/purchase questions, please contact the recommended instrument vendors. You can find their contact info in the Links section.

    Will the school provide an instrument?

    You will need to rent or purchase an instrument for your child. You can rent or purchase an instrument from any of the recommended instrument vendors in the area. Checkout thehttps://www.northallegheny.org//site/Default.aspx?PageID=11722 section for their contact information. If you would like to purchase an instrument from somewhere else other than a recommended instrument vendor, please contact Ms. Semanco first for important information.  Once in the middle school and high school students that play the cello or bass can use a school instrument and can leave their rental instrument at home for practice. 

    Should my child take private lessons in addition to the school lessons?

    While outside private instruction is not required to participate in our program, it is strongly encouraged. This provides the student with extra one-on-one instruction on their instrument. For suggestions on a private teacher in the area, please feel free to contact Ms. Semanco for a recommended list.

    Does my child get a grade for orchestra?

    Evaluation and assessment are vital parts of our elementary orchestra curriculum in the North Allegheny School District, as well as part of the Pennsylvania Standards for the Arts and Humanities and the MENC National Standards for Music. While the students do not receive a letter grade on their report card for orchestra, they do receive two progress reports during the school year. One is given in January, and the other at the end of the school year. These progress reports allow us to give extensive evaluation of the students' mastery of musical skills, as well as give specific feedback and suggestions for future improvement.
Last Modified on September 10, 2018