Set Realistic Goals
It's important to remember—not every student is training to be a virtuoso. Practice time should match the performance goals of the student. Your teacher can suggest the appropriate amount of practice time for your child's age and progress.
Establish a Routine
There are many ways to structure practice. Some students work well with a practice time set for the same time every day, and others work better with a block of time that they can split up into shorter practice sessions.
Everyone is motivated by different things. While one student might work to please parents and teachers, others might be motivated by rewards, the pure joy of playing, or established consequences and rewards. Discover what motivates your child and use that to keep them motivated through periods of distraction.
As a general rule, younger children require more supervision, and this same idea extends to practice. Ask your teacher how you can help your child have more efficient practice sessions. Even if you know nothing about music, your teacher will have plenty of suggestions on how to keep your child focused while practicing. It's also quite enriching to listen to live and recorded performances of whatever instrument or voice part is being studied—this can give the whole family context to appreciate musical studies.
Achievement of goals should always be rewarded—but we're not talking money and prizes here. Musical goals earn musical rewards, and this can accomplished via new equipment to help advance musicianship, such as a new metronome, instrument upgrade, or fun piece of music to study. Reward your student with more tools to foster a love of music.
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Set Realistic Goals
The single most important thing you can do to be prepared for a recital is to practice, practice, practice! Set aside time every day to learn, rehearse, and master your recital piece. The more comfortable you feel with the material, the easier it will be to play for others.
Find an audience
Don't just practice for yourself – invite friends and family to casually listen. Consider this step much like proofreading—you're allowing an unfamiliar person to give constructive feedback about something you already know well. Often, this process will help you to identify things to correct that you might not even be aware of.
Make a recording
If you don't have anyone around to listen while you practice, use your cell phone or computer (or whatever you choose) to make a recording of your practice. Even better if it's a video recording. You will get the chance to observe how you sound and appear to your audience, and refine this appearance before the recital.
Invite friends and family
An interested audience is a great motivator for success. Invite people close to you that you want to share your music with. Doing so will hold you accountable to others in addition to your personal commitment, and will help keep you going during moments when your motivation to practice or keep working through a tough passage might be waning.
Take care of your instrument
Have everything prepared and ready to go the night before. Collect your music, instrument, and any accessories you might need, lay out your recital attire, and put them in a convenient spot. This will help minimize stress on the day of your performance—everything will be just where you set it!
Make sure you are well rested. The day of the recital, eat normally. Try not to eat anything too heavy or rich a few hours before the performance, and stay hydrated. Dry mouth is a common symptom of nervousness, so you'll want to combat this by being extra-hydrated and having a water bottle with you for the show.
Performers will make mistakes—we are all human, after all. Even professional musicians make errors, but they never let the audience know it! There is no need to compare yourself to the progress of other musicians – we all learn at our own pace and have different reasons for studying music. The most important thing is to do your best and share your joy for music with others.
Have fun !!
The recital is all about you and your hard work studying music—enjoy the chance to show off!
Music enhances the process of learning. The systems they nourish include our integrated sensory attention, cognitive, emotional and motor capacities are shown to be the driving forces behind all other learning. Konrad, R.R., "Empathy, Arts and Social Studies," 2000.
The College Entrance Examination Board found that students in music appreciation scored 63 points higher on verbal and 44 points higher in math than students with no arts participation. "College Bound Seniors National Report: Profile of SAT Program Test Takers," Princeton, NJ: The College Entrance Examination Board, 2001.
U.S. Department of Education data show that students who report consistently high levels of involvement in instrumental music during the middle- and high-school years show significantly higher levels of math proficiency by grade 12. Catterall, J., Shapleau, K., and Iwanaga, J., "Involvement in the Arts and Human Development," 1999.
Young children who received a year of musical training showed brain changes and superior memory compared with children who did not receive the instruction. Fyjioka, T., Ross, B., Kakiji, R., Pantev, C., and Trainor, L., "Brain A Journal of Neurology," Oxford University Press, September, 2006.
The vast majority - 96 percent - of the school principals interviewed in a recent study agree that participation in music education encourages and motivates students to stay in school. Further, 89% of principals feel that a high-quality music education program contributes to their school achieving higher graduation rates. Harris Interactive Poll, 2006.
A study of rural and urban inner-city schools found that arts programs helped schools in economically disadvantaged communities develop students' critical thinking and problem-solving skills. Stevenson, L., Deasy, R., Third Space: When Learning Matters, AEP, 2006.
With music in schools, students connect to each other better -- greater camaraderie, fewer fights, less racism and reduced use of hurtful sarcasm. Jensen, E. "Arts with Brain In Mind," Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, 2001.
Students who participate in school band or orchestra have the lowest levels of current and lifelong use of alcohol, tobacco and illicit drugs among any group. U.S. House of Representatives, "Concurrent Res. 266," June 13, 2000.
Music majors are the most likely group of college grads to be admitted to medical school. Thomas, L. "Case For Music In The Schools," PHI DELTA KAPPA, 1994.
The foremost technical designers and engineers in Silicon Valley are almost all practicing musicians. Dickinson, D., Music And The Mind, 1993.
news & events
- 05.02 spring RecitaL Sign ups!Our Spring recital has been scheduled. Look for an e-mail about sign ups, or call the office. Look at pictures from the winter recital.
- 06.09 spring recital The recital is scheduled for June 9. It will begin at 1:00 PM. See you there!!!
- 06.20 first day of summer.Summer is here -- don't forget to let your teacher know if you'll be out of town during the springtime holidays and school vacations!!
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