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 for the carer to sign and make a comment on.
My first instrumental teachers always used notebooks – we brought them to each lesson, and the teacher would write down what we needed to do. I can remember my piano teacher writing out, step by step, how I was to practice certain bars or technical problems, and so I do the same for my pupils. Their note books are full of my attempts to draw a “good rounded hand shape”, maybe with a cute little mouse sheltering under the arches of the fingers, contrasted with “flatty splatty fingers” (and maybe a flattened splattened mouse).
Or scales, written out in letters with sharps or vital fingerings high-lighted, or on quickly drawn manuscript lines, or even the required notes lettered in on a diagram of a keyboard (very good method for chromatic scales).
Or specific preparatory exercises to approach a particularly tricky bit.
Or compositions written specifically for a young student to teach her baby sister, or mother, or favourite “My Little Pony”.
And then, especially for the younger children, the practice incentives. Sometimes it need to be a chart showing how many minutes of the 10-15-20-30 minute practice should be spent on each activity.
Or just some variously-shaped “circles”, to be turned into faces each time they practice. Like this:
So, for the moment, I’m sticking with the note book for most of my pupils, as the official sheet of paper barely lasts me half a term….