5 Tips on How to Keep Your High School Band Students Playing in Harmony

5 Tips on How to Keep Your High School Band Students Playing in Harmony

We've been in music education for over two decades now, and it’s been our mission to help high school band directors get the most out of their students. As any seasoned band director will know, it's not always easy to keep adolescent musicians playing in harmony. Fortunately, there are a few tried-and-true tips that you can use to keep your band running smoothly and prevent those awkward moments of disagreement or stilted performance. Without further ado, let's jump into the five things that you can do to help your high school band students work together as a team better.

Set Common Goals - One of the most effective ways to build a cohesive team is to set common goals for your band members. Make sure everyone in your ensemble understands what you're striving to accomplish together, whether that be performing at a competition or creating a community project. When your students know what they're working towards, they're more likely to work together to achieve success.

Encourage Communication - One of the easiest ways to build camaraderie among high school band students is by encouraging regular communication and conversation. Time spent chatting can bring students closer together, and it can also help them to bond over common interests, like music, sports, or other areas of the arts. Establish a system where band members can chat regularly with one another, talk about things other than music, and get to know each other better. Who knows? You might be surprised at how much less tension there is during practice when there's a sense of commonality among your band members.

Foster a Sense of Community - Creating a sense of community within your band is vital to building a cohesive team. Find ways to involve everyone in the band, regardless of their skill level. Hold team-building activities, such as picnics, game nights, or even rehearsals in unique venues. Creating fun, inclusive experiences that promote togetherness will help your band function as a single unit.

Promote Teamwork - Band directors should encourage their students to work together on projects or learning new songs. Let your band members play to their strengths, and encourage them to work with one another to improve as musicians. This will help to build a sense of teamwork and camaraderie among your band members, and it will ultimately lead to better overall performance.

Make Time for Reflection - It's important to take some time to reflect as a team. Encourage band members to take a few moments at the end of each rehearsal to think about what they've accomplished during that session. Discuss what worked, didn't work, and ways that the team can improve. This simple practice promotes a sense of belonging and investment.


Building team cohesion among your high school band members is no easy feat, but it's worth the effort. By encouraging communication, planning activities, leading by example, encouraging specialization, and creating clear goals and expectations, you can help your band work together more effectively and achieve better outcomes. Remember to be patient, kind, and flexible as you navigate this process, and don't be afraid to experiment with different strategies until you find what works best for your band. Good luck, and happy rehearsing!

Back to blog

Leave a comment