November 10th Email Update

Dear Poppy Music Families,

Based on the responses we received to our call in mid-October, we’re looking forward to our two nights of music next week. As it’s been a while for us and the experience of concerts here at Poppy is new for many of our students, here are the details

  • Grade 10-12 students are performing on Wednesday, November 17th
  • Grade 8 & 9 students are performing on Thursday, November 18th
  • SETUP: Setup will take place each day after school from 3:00pm until we’re done (usually around 3:45) and all music students are expected to assist with at least one setup this year. There are shows now, in March and in June. Setup Sign-out lists will be posted once the Dramnasium is ready for the show.
  • UNIFORM: Black with optional Red Accents (Poppy Ties or Scarves for grade 10-12 students can be purchased from Mr. Follett)
  • TICKETS: Admission is by donation at the door (all proceeds support your child’s music activities here at Poppy) – We are asking that you register ahead so we can gage our audience size against our capacity for the Dramnasium
  • CALL TIME: Arrival time  for students is 6:40pm in uniform. Students need to sign in for the evening in the band room or choir room and their performance will begin at 7:00pm
  • CLEAN UP: We will ask parents to exit the gym through the south doors and then have all performers quickly assist with clean up after the concert. Sign-out lists will be posted when the rehearsal and performance spaces are ready for morning classes (Usually about 15-20min post-concert).

As we are working within the COVID protocols for the evening, a few notes and reminders:

  • All audience members, as well as all students except for woodwind and brass players during their performances, are required to wear masks while in the school
  • All audience members are asked to sign-in for contact tracing
  • Please leave two (2) empty seats between family groups in the audience
  • At the end of the evening, we ask that all audience members exit through the south doors of the gym (the audience’s left) and meet their children outside or at their vehicle after the concert rather than congregating in the lobby during cleanup.
  • While we do not expect to be over capacity for the evening, please let us know how many audience members your child will have with them for their concert here:

Thank you all for supporting your child’s love of music. Please let us know if you have any questions or concerns and we look forward to seeing you here in the Dramnasium next week.

Mark & Jered

October 18 Email Update

Dear DW Poppy Music Families,



Thank you to everyone who responded to our survey regarding performances this year. With 98% responding that, assuming there are no changes to current circumstances, concerts either could or sould go ahead this year, we will be organizing our Fall concerts for November17 and 18 as follows:

  • Senior Night of Music for all grade 10-12 students on Wednesday, November 17
  • Junior Night of Music for all grade 8 & 9 students on Thursday, November 18.
  • Both concerts will start at 7:00pm

Further details will follow next week regarding call times, concert setup, and how the evenings will work, but please put the evening(s) related to your family aside. I will be following up with families with concerns to see how we might better address any, but know that while we look forward to going ahead with this important educational experience, your child’s safety is our priority. If you have further concerns, please let us know.



FUNDRAISING IS BACK! Each student in the music department has their own account that they can raise money towards music department travel and other music expenses. While we may currently not be traveling this year, funds are bankable year-to-year while your child is in the program so these funds will be available until they graduate from music. Any unsued funds can either be passed on to younger siblings in the program or go to support DW Poppy music as a whole.

Poinsettia Sales:

One of our most successful fundraisers every year is Poinsettias. Order Forms are attached and hard copies are available at the school.

  • PAYMENTS NEED TO BE BY CHEQUE Payable to the DW Poppy Music Department
  • Orders must be in an envelope and dropped in the RED BOX on Mr. Follett’s office door no later than November 19th.
  • Poinsettias need to be picked up the afternoon of Friday, December 3

Music Parent Cathy Gropp ( has coordinated this fundraiser for a number of years and is graciously continuing, but please let me know if you are able to assist her as we usually end up with ½ the band room full of plants on pickup day.


Thanks so much for continuing to support your child’s love of music and we look forward to seeing you on November 17 or 18!


Mark and Jered


PS – Save the dates as we hope to also be able to go ahead with the following performances:

  • March 7 & 8 – Junior and Senior Spring Nights of Music
  • June 8 – ESPRESSIVO: Summer Pops

Important Information for First Rehearsals

As we have first rehearsals on Monday/Tuesday this week but have had a different startup than usual, I wanted to pass along a few details for first rehearsals:

  • We will be playing on the first day so bring your instrument and accessories 
  • Grade 8’s – Please also bring your copy of Sound Innovations from last year as we will be working with Book 1 a little before moving into Book 2. 
  • Please be sure your CASE IS LABLED ON BOTH ENDS so you can see which instrument is yours sitting on the storage room shelves
  • We will be setting up TEAMS for class content and REMIND for communication right away so I encourage you to bring your device with you if possible. Also if possible, please install Teams (Microsoft) and REMIND: School Communication (remind101) ahead of time to help speed up the process.
  • EARLY MORNING JAZZ BANDS, SWE and CHOIRS – All music students attending a 7:00am rehearsal are to enter through the main front doors of the school when the arrive and proceed to their rehearsal space. 
  • Woodwinds and Brass players – We have a very small project on the first day that requires scissors. I will have some to borrow and clean, but I’d encourage you to bring a pair if possible JUST FOR THE FIRST DAY
  • Guitars and Basses – Please bring a strap, patch cord and tuner (8’s – no amps needed – we have those) 
  • Percussionists (Drummers) – Please be sure to bring your stick bag with all contents (8’s – we’ll cover this in class) as we are to avoid sharing sticks and mallets this year.
  • Grade 9’s and 10’s – While Concert Band doesn’t fall this quarter, please pop by to say hi if you’re not in Jazz or Choir. 

This will obviously be a different year, but seeing familiar faces yesterday and today, it’s clear the kids are excited to get back to making music. If you have any questions or concerns, please check the website or send me an email.

NOTE: If you are interested, we have posted a list of music-specific protocols posted to These protocols are based on “Guidance for Music Classes in British Columbia during COVID-19” (August 17, 2020 Update) but are subject to change based on adjustments to best practice and other directives. 

20/21 Off-Timetable Schedule


I took the beautiful September 8th sunrise during my run this morning as an encouraging sign around all the potential new opportunities this year.

As we now have our quarterly calendar and our new bell schedules for the year, Jered and I wanted to update you on our off-timetable classes. Please note that as we continue to adapt to the current school format, we may need to tweak these times a bit, but it will let everyone sleep in a bit longer and get home a bit earlier.

DW Poppy Music OFF-TIMETABLE 2020/21 SCHEDULE (STARTING SEPTEMBER 14th) ***Adjusted September 9, 2020***

  • Senior Jazz and Junior Choir – Monday & Thursday before school – 7:00-8:15am
  • Junior Jazz and Senior Choir – Tuesday & Friday before school – 7:00-8:15am
  • Senior Wind Ensemble** – Wednesday before school – 7:00-8:15am and Monday & Friday at lunch
  • Vocal Jazz** – Tuesday & Thursday after school – 2:00-3:15

** We know that the hybrid senior schedule creates some challenges with our regular lunch and afternoon rehearsals, so will be talking to the kids during the first week about how we best address these challenges to meet the kids needs. 

Welcome to DW Poppy’s 2020/21 Season!

Dear Poppy Music Families,

I wanted to take a moment welcome everyone back for DW Poppy Music’s 2020/21 season. I would also like to welcome Mr. Jered Steeves, our new choir director! 

School in 2020/21 will certainly look different due to CoVID-19 and though we know it will look a bit different in the band and choir rooms this year at Poppy, we’re happy to say that when we are in face-to-face instruction with kids, we are also able to run choir and band! We will be doing so by adding a number of safety protocols we will be sharing in the coming weeks, based on research undertaken internationally, collated in the “Guidance for Music Classes in British Columbia During Covid-19”. The largest of these studies is the “International Coalition of Performing Arts Aerosol Study” led by Dr. Shelly Miller (University of Colorado Boulder) and Dr. Jelena Srebric (University of Maryland) which I’ve linked. I will be sharing other research in the coming weeks, but please know that while we are excited to return to making music together, our priority is to do so safely and if new research dictates, we will make changes as we go to protect the kids. SAFETY is our first priority.

While the quarterly timetable will create some interesting new opportunities for Band 8, 9 and 10 which I’m very excited about, our off-timetable music schedule will be running basically as has in past years, allowing us to maintain some of our traditions while we also create new ones. We are waiting to confirm our early-morning start times, but the kids (and parents!) will be able to sleep in later this year!


  • Senior Jazz and Junior Choir – Monday & Thursday before school
  • Junior Jazz and Senior Choir – Tuesday & Friday before school
  • Senior Wind Ensemble – Wednesday before school and Monday & Friday* at lunch
  • Vocal Jazz – Tuesday & Thursday* after school

*Due to the new hybrid senior schedule, these rehearsals will be confirmed with the students

We will share more music program details as we have them confirmed, but know that Jered and I are excited to see the kids and find a bit of normalcy in making music together in a safe way in September!


Uploading large files from iOS to OneDrive for sharing


Here are the written instruction for how to upload large files to your OneDrive on an iPhone/iPad so you can submit them in TEAMS. This is a video version in our Instrumental Music 8-12 TEAM.

  1. Shoot your video on your iPad or iPhone
  2. Install OneDrive and log in using your email address
  3. Find your video in the Photos app and tap the SHARE ICON (box with the arrow up)
  4. Tap the OneDrive icon to select it as your file destination
  5. This brings up a new screen with your file name, your account name and FILES.
  6. Tap FILES and click through the folders to select where in OneDrive you want to store the video. Once you’ve found the right place, tap UPLOAD HERE. 
  7. You will then get a progress bar and it will take a few minutes. Over Wi-Fi at home, it takes about 1 minute to upload a 15MB video for me, but that will depend on your connection. (If it stall out here for more than 5 min without starting, try deleting and reinstalling OneDrive, which worked for me.)

Your file should now be available in OneDrive. Now to share the link:

  1. Open the OneDrive app on your iOS device and it should give you a list of FOLDERS
  2. Tap on the one where you uploaded your video
  3. Once you see your video file, tap on the 3 dots to right of the file
  4. That will bring up a menu allowing you to Share, Delete, Make Available and a number of other things (This is where you can tap Rename This File if you need/want to rename the video)
  5. Tap Share and it will bring up a screen showing Send Link
  6. Tap on People you specify can view and select an option. To share it just with your teacher, tap Specific people and then tap the blue Apply button. Once you’ve tapped apply, you’ll be back to the Send Link screen.
  7. Input your teacher’s last name and they should pop up as an option
  8. Tap Copy Link and it will then be available to paste into your assignment that you send in teams, into the TEAMS chat or into an email.

Login and Music Check-In Reminder


I hope everyone is doing well and thank you so much to everyone who has already responded to the questionnaire that went out earlier. I have setup the Concert Bands, Jazz Bands and CLE9 class in TEAMS. I sent a message for the kids yesterday in their CONCERT BAND team with the code to join the full group for all the band classes as we are working to help get kids connected for next week. Many kids haven’t seen it yet so I wanted to reach out a few ways to be sure they are able to connect

STEPS to login and join the larger music group tor our check-in:

  1. Please have them log in to TEAMS through Office 365
  2. Have them find that message I posted yesterday
  3. Use the code to join the “Mr. Follett – Instrumental Music 8-12” team
  4. I have three 10 minute check-ins today and I’ll add two more for Tuesday. Students just need to pop in to ONE (only 1) of those for just a few minutes to check in so I know they’re able to connect.

If your child is having any challenges logging In (not just for music), please email me and I’ll help them out.

There will be no music content rolled out until next Thursday so the kids have Tuesday and Wednesday to get their feet under them with their academics. (I’ll continue to post fun stuff through, FB and Instagram.)

Thanks so much and stay safe.

Mr. Follett

PS – If you have not completed the music questionnaire, I emailed out again today at about 10:30am. Let me know if you need it sent again.

A quick note to check in with members of the DW Poppy musical community

Teachers will be reaching out on the phone over the next few days and even though your family may not be on my assigned call-list, I wanted to take a moment to touch base and let you know I’ve been thinking about you all. It is clearly going to be a very different Spring and I hope that you are all doing what you need to for yourselves and your families to stay healthy and safe.

I know that numeracy, literacy and academics will be a priority (as they will be with my own children!), but if you intend on going into the school to pick up your child’s essentials, consider grabbing your child’s instrument if was left there over the break. I am NOT asking anyone to make a special trip, only if it is already part of your plans. 

In the coming weeks, we will be offering some opportunities for the kids make music on their own and hopefully in a way that will allow them to connect online with their musical friends and peers as well. In the meantime, consider dragging that horn out of the case and onto the front porch at 7:00pm to make some noise (or play O Canada!) in support of our amazing Front Line Workers.

It has been said that music is what feelings sound like. Right now, for many of us, the ability to express what we may have trouble saying may be just what we need. Take care and I’ll look forward to connecting with everyone again soon.

PS – For now, connect with the music department here at and our Facebook a nd Instagram channels @dwpoppymusic

Dear Poppy Music Musicians and Families,

Clearly our year will be continuing much differently than planned and I wanted to touch base for a moment. At this point I have no concrete directives from the school or district as to how classes, including music, will proceed but we’ll be looking at that next week. When I receive information regarding music classes next week and beyond, I’ll update social media (Instagram @dwpoppymusic and Facebook) and our website ( for the time being.

For now, listen to your favourite music and take out your instrument and play for fun. Share your talent and love of music and know that we will be back at it in one way or another as soon as possible.


Mr. Follett