Tag Archives: practising

34/60 Christmas is a time for sudden progess

At this time of year I switch to focussing on Christmas Carols. With careful choice of book, many of the students will make great gains in confidence and motivation. As well as choosing “off-the-shelf” books, I’ve also transposed carols into … Continue reading

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85/100 Intentional Learning

That sounds a bit serious… But I mean that kind of practising when you first work out, and then work at, exactly what has to happen to manage to play the right notes. Let’s take this extract from the A2 … Continue reading

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69/100 – Jig-saw Learning

What do you do when a pupil turns up at a lesson, declaring that she hadn’t done any work on the piece from last week because “it is too difficult”…. Let’s pretend she was a violin pupil learning to play … Continue reading

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23/100 “Daily” practice record

We’re issued with a pre-printed A4 sheet to give to students that we teach through Music Services.There is a box for writing down what the student is supposed to practice, and another box with 7 circles and a dotted line … Continue reading

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Issue 125: In the Mood for Practising

Years ago, I watched a television documentary on one of the specialist music schools. During a lesson, the music teacher was teaching a young lad, and issued the instruction “when you practice this exercise, if you are not in the mood to … Continue reading

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Issue 34: Olympic Practising

The athletes competing at the Olympics will have got there through spending hours and hours working on the different elements of their sport. In one way, playing an instrument is exactly the same as learning as sport. It is about … Continue reading

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Issue 26: Play it again, Sam. And again. And again…

Repetition is a cornerstone of learning – that is, Intelligent Repetition, where each time you repeat the phrase or bar, or section, you play it accurately. I feel I have made a breakthrough with one of my teenage piano students … Continue reading

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Issue 23: Intentionality

Doing things “on purpose” is a key to understanding how to learn – in general, and in music. The problem that many learners have is that this requires slow, purposeful work in the early stages of learning something new. The … Continue reading

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