A “Twist on Practicing Perfect” I think practicing is very much like a recipe. Add your ingredients in the wrong order and the entire dish is a disaster. For instance, what if you were to add too much of one ingredient and not enough of the other… like one of those German Pancakes that is supposed to be 10 inches tall? Have yours ever turned out an inch tall and much like a Frisbee? Mmmmm hmmmm. I thought so. Take heart, I too have experience in this department.
I also have experience in the “perfect practicing” AND the “not-so-perfect-practicing department.” Here are some guaranteed ways to keep your students practicing, succeeding and having fun while they do it the right way the first time!!
1. The Triple A list. I developed a way to incorporate older repertoire and still keep up on the new weekly assignments. Insist on a day off. That’s right…. a vacation day once a week from practicing. Your students will be shocked, and you will be one step ahead of them. Reward them PROFUSELY for completing this list WELL. The pieces performed must be memorized. They must be passed off previously by you. They must be played once a week because who knows when the whim for an on-demand performance will pop into your creative (and slightly devious) mind! You retain the right to ask for any piece on the list…. at any time. If they fail to perform, you may just have another devious impulse pop into your mind…. like throwing a one inch frisbee their way. I NEVER JOKE ABOUT FOOD DISASTERS.
DOWNLOAD THE Triple A List here.
2. The “crazy twister practice it right roll the dice” chart. Please don’t laugh at my artwork! I made this chart in ten minutes and it was honestly one of the best things I’ve come up with! Your student simply rolls the dice and whatever number they land on is how they will perform the new line they learned today. This chart requires some preparation…. dividing their music into sections ahead of time makes sure they succeed. You will need two dice. Then you are ready to “play” while they “play”! Snap… this job’s a game!
Piano Mastermind http://www.poolepianostudio.com