All bands have the same class architecture, starting with a drum circle, followed by a Rock Pit game, finishing with the bandstand. Each activity has a purpose and focuses on a specific element of music - rhythm, harmony, melody and songwriting. Class begins in the drum circle, setting goals for the day’s rehearsal, and then playing a fun rhythm game on the drums as a team. Next up in Rock Pit, students are up on their feet, perhaps diving into songwriting, maybe playing a harmony game to get them ready for the band stand. On the bandstand, students grab instruments and work on their original song, solidifying the musical BLAM (Big Lesson About Music) for the day!
Q: What instruments do we play in band?
Jam Band, Rock Write Record Exploration and GirlPop Exploration students will play ALL instruments, regardless of the one they play at the gig. Students in ‘position’ bands play designated instruments. (Though we encourage exploration at all levels!) Position bands are for students who are taking private lessons on their instrument and typically have played in bands previously.
Q: Do I need to buy an instrument? How do I practice?
Brooklyn Music Factory supplies the instruments for in-class rehearsals, and every week you will receive a Band Report with specific practice suggestions for home. Because students in beginner bands play multiple instrument/s—and we do not expect students to have all the instruments at home—the practice suggestions will be exercises that don’t require specific instruments. Students can also play BLAM (Big Lessons About Music) games at home on Big Music Games, our mobile app.
What’s a BLAM game? BLAM games are games bands play in class with their teachers to learn different components of music fluency. They’re super fun and super effective! You can download the Big Music Games iOS app on the App Store.
Q: What songs do we play?
All bands—Jam Bands, Rock Write Record and GirlPop bands—spend lots of time writing original songs. Writing songs allows students to go “under the hood” of the songs and develop a knowledge and understanding of the components of music. We call that music fluency. Students are also SUPER engaged in their own songs, which keeps them inspired and motivated.
Q: I just want to try a couple of classes and see how I like it before I register. Do you offer trial classes?
We do not offer drop-in or free trial classes. However, our registration is risk-free, meaning that once you register, if you decide after two or fewer lessons that BMF is not the right fit for whatever reason, we will refund your membership fee and any tuition you have paid. If you withdraw after your 3rd lesson, we require 30 days’ written notice (please email Jessica at firstname.lastname@example.org) and the $40 membership fee is not refunded. These policies apply to both band and private lesson enrollment.
Makeup Policy & Missed Classes
Q: If we miss a class, can we make it up? OR What happens if we miss a class?
We do not offer makeup classes for bands, because every group is working on different material. However, you will receive a Band Report for the missed class from your teacher--so you can see what the band worked on and any suggestions for practicing before the next class.
For private lessons, all students are allowed one makeup lesson between Sept-Jan, and one makeup lesson between Feb-June. Most makeup lessons are held during designated makeup weeks in January and June, and students who are owed makeup lessons come at their regular day/time. for a lesson (Students who are not owed makeup lessons have the week off.)
Q: My band/private lesson was cancelled because of a snow day. Will there be a makeup or a refund for the missed class?
No. We plan on a couple of surprise snow days every year, so your minimum number of lessons (30 per school year) is unaffected and your monthly tuition will be billed as normal.
Q: How is billing at BMF structured?
Bands and private lessons at Brooklyn Music Factory follow a 30-week curriculum (NB: Mini Keys follows a 15-week arc) from September-June. Our annual tuition is based on each student receiving 30 classes per school year. The annual tuition is divided into 10 equal monthly installments, which post to your credit card on file on the 1st of each month.
Q: I’m only getting two classes this month because of holiday closures. Why am I being billed in full this month?
Holidays and planned closures are accounted for in our annual lesson count, so even though some months have more or fewer lessons than others, your tuition will be the same from month to month---remember, the overall annual tuition is divided into equal monthly installments, regardless of planned closures or an unplanned snow day.
Q: Classes begin part-way through September and end part-way through June. Why am I being billed in full for those months?
You’re guaranteed to receive 30 classes per school year (September-June). This total annual tuition is divided into 10 equal monthly installments, so your tuition will be the same every month, even though classes start and end mid-month in September and June, respectively.
Q: What time can I arrive to set up for my child’s party?
The birthday child and parents are welcome to arrive 20-30 minutes prior to the start of your party. All other party guests will need to arrive at the party’s official start time to ensure we’re all set up and ready to go!
Q: I’d like to bring some extra decorations (balloons, banners, tablecloth). Is that ok?
Absolutely! We just ask that families take all of their decorations with them when the party’s over.
Q: I want to order pizza for the party. Where should I order it? What time should it come?
We like Cotta Bene which is near BMF. You should plan on having the pizza arrive in the last 30-40 minutes of your party.
Q: Is there a place for the adults to hang out during the party?
Adults are welcome to hang out in our community room during the party. Please be aware, however, that this is the same space as the birthday party; there’s not a separate area for adults/siblings to hang out during the party.
Q: Can I bring some beer/wine/snacks for the adults?
Yes. We have a fridge onsite and it’s fine to bring some goodies for the grownups.
Q: What info do you need to create a great playlist for my Move & Groove party?
You can be as general or specific as you’d like. Any of the information below will help us create a playlist the kids will love:
Your child’s favorite musical genre.
Your child’s favorite artist.
A list of specific songs your child loves.
A Spotify playlist you’ve already created (approx. 30 mins).
Q: How many kids can attend a Rock & Write party?
Up to 8 kids (including the birthday boy/girl).
Q: How many kids can attend a Sing & Play or Move & Groove Party?
Up to 20 kids (including the birthday boy/girl).
Q: I have a few extra kids who will be attending. Is there a supplemental charge?
Rock & Write: these parties are firmly capped at 8 kids; they write a song and become a band together, so it’s necessary to keep it small.
Sing & Play/Move & Groove: there is a $15 charge for each child over the 20-guest limit. NB: We cannot accommodate more than 25 kids at one party.
Q: Whom can I contact the day of my party with any last-minute questions?
Your birthday party teacher. You’ll receive your birthday party teacher’s direct contact information prior to your party.
Q: I have a question about my party that hasn’t been answered here.
Jessica would be happy to speak with you in more detail about your party! Email her directly at email@example.com with a good time to talk and she’ll be in touch soon.