I came across a wonderful chart that I’ve decided to share with my students as they prepare for their upcoming recital. I made a few changes of my own to make it more appropriate for all age groups. If you want to view the original article, you can click on the following link: Practice Makes It Easy: Recital Preparation.
I’ve always been a big fan of practice charts. They help instill the importance of making consistent practice an everyday habit. When used properly, they can also help students make the direct correlation between their improved performance and the time they spent working on their music. A secondary benefit of using a recital preparation practice chart is that it’s an effective tool to help relieve the specific performance anxiety that stems from feeling that “I’m going to be so embarrassed if I mess up in front of all these people because I really don’t know if I prepared my music well enough” .
For most of my students, I use the preparation chart in the following way:
- After the student has selected their recital song(s), they are asked to play through each one 3 times daily.
- The student will then rate each daily practice session as either Good, Great or Wow.
- In the beginning, most students are just learning the music and feel as though they are still in the practicing stage. These less than ‘Good’ days don’t get marked on the chart because I don’t want students to look back and feel that they are recording their failures.
- The goal for each student is to have at least 30 Good, Great or Wow days practicing their recital song(s).
As with most endeavors in life, preparation is the key to success!!