Make your lesson and practice time count
Most students find it challenging to remember what was said in a lesson. Perhaps conveniently, they sometimes find it even more difficult to remember what they should practice prior to the next lesson. Keeping a journal will make a student’s practice time more effective.
Keep a simple journal of key learning points in a lesson and write down items to include in the student’s regular practice routine.
It will help jog the memory. It can also serve as a valuable record of progress.
Lesson and Practice Journal
Download a full year of journal pages from playingbrass.com.
The weekly Lesson and Practice Journal is a template that the tutor and student can use during lessons. Students make notes during practice time. Use one page each week.
Music students and teachers use the top half to record key take-aways. The students can then refer back to these during their practice time.
The student can use the bottom half of the journal page during practice time to record:
- what the student should practice over the coming week,
- what the student actually practiced during the week (tick marks),
- how long the student practiced on each day.
This example shows what a completed journal page might look like.
Students should focus their practice time on those areas that will provide them with the most benefit towards improving their playing ability.
A Tool for Students, Parents and Teachers
Keeping a journal is a great resource for students, teachers and parents to support a regular and frequent practice routine. Ideally, students should use the document daily.
Teachers and parents might consider using a reward system to encourage students to practice frequently. you can reward younger students with stickers in their journal, or special treats, for a solid week of practicing.
If a student returns to lessons week after week without any evidence of a practice routine, then the journal serves as an objective basis for a frank discussion about the student’s level of commitment.
If you use a journal effectively, it will help the student retain the key points being taught and encourage them to practice the right exercises frequently.
Other Resources to make good use of your practice time
For some terrific videos on how to practice, check out Harry Wtter’s youtube channel
Also check out Christopher Bill and his resources.
Both Harry and Christopher have some fantastic video on their Youtube channels where you can listen to some expert playing.