Frequently Asked Questions

What schools participate in Kids' Orchestra?

For a full list of partner schools, click HERE.

When does Kids' Orchestra meet?

Our traditional after-school programs meet twice a week at each designated teaching site, on either Mondays/Wednesdays or Tuesdays/Thursdays from 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m.

21st Century Community Learning Center sites meet four days a week, Monday through Thursday from 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.

Kids’ Choir meets once a week on Mondays from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

How does transportation work?

Kids’ Orchestra consists of site schools and feeder schools. For children attending a feeder school that is not a host site, transportation will be provided to and from their school and lessons. Children who wish to be a part of Kids’ Orchestra but do not attend a participating school must provide their own transportation to the instructional site that is most convenient to them.

What instruments can my child play?

Students may choose from violin, viola, double bass, cello, flute, clarinet, trumpet, and percussion.

How will my child choose an instrument?

Students will have the chance to see or play all instruments available at their site before they make a decision. Some instruments are limited to a student’s age, size, or physical ability. Younger students are often encouraged to play strings and percussion while older students are offered wind instruments.

Do I need to provide an instrument?

No. Kids’ Orchestra provides all instruments on loan for the school year through an instrument responsibility agreement. If your child already has an instrument that they would prefer to use, they are welcome to use it.

How do lessons work?

Students take group lessons for an hour each program day. Classes contain an average of 10 students from either Kindergarten to the First grade for Foundations classes, or Second to Fifth grade for instrumental classes. Teaching artists are trained to work with diverse age groups and often provide opportunities to the more experienced students in a given class to become leaders, building skills beyond the music score.

Who attends Kids’ Orchestra with my child?

Children in grades K-5 participate in programming at each Kids’ Orchestra site. Each site pairs a feeder school with a host school so your child will participate in classes with students from both schools as well as any individuals who registered for that location and provide their own transportation to lessons.

Who will supervise or teach my child?

A team of professional music teachers and site coordinators supervise your child. Site coordinators are responsible for the operation of the site and oversee arrival, snack, homework, and dismissal time. Our teachers are professional musicians and educators who supervise and instruct your child during lesson time.

How do I know my child is safe?

Safety is our top priority. All staff members must pass a background check and take a child abuse prevention course before working for Kids’ Orchestra. All faculty members also attend Kids’ Orchestra in-service training days before and throughout the program year.

My child has a learning disability. Will my child be accommodated?

All students are welcome to participate in our program if they are able to sustain attention in group lessons for an hour at a time without significant personal attention. Should significant personal attention be required, we ask that parents please provide an adult to supervise and participate with the child in class.

Can I meet my child’s teacher?

Yes! Parents are highly encouraged to meet and engage with their child’s teacher. The best time to speak with your child’s teacher is at the end of a lesson, at 5 p.m. at the site school. You can discuss your child’s progress, instrument care, and at-home practice time.

What is the Honors program and what are the weekend rehearsals?

The Honors ensembles – String Orchestra, Wind Ensemble, and Symphony Orchestra – are comprised of students who have been recommended by their teacher based on their developing musical skills and overall progress on a chosen instrument. Honors students have often participated in Kids’ Orchestra for at least one year. Honors students participate in monthly weekend rehearsals and end of semester Honors concerts. Selected students and parents will be notified of their Honors recommendation by paper notification sent home with the student.

What is the cost of participating in Kids' Orchestra?

All children accepted into Kids’ Orchestra programming participate, regardless of family income. Our tuition works on a sliding scale to meet the specific needs of each child and their family. Click HERE for full tuition information.

Can my child participate in both Kids’ Orchestra and Kids’ Choir?

Yes. Students who participate in our traditional after-school program may also participate in the Kids’ Choir.