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Music is Not for Insects

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Practicing tips for parents and students: part 2

When it comes to practicing an instrument, I was always told what to practice but never how. I was also told that more time spent practicing created results. This meant as a young musician, I focused more on watching the clock than practicing with purpose. This same attitude of more practice (TIME)=better musician carried over into my teaching.

It wasn't until I read The Practice Revolution by Philip Johnston I realized my approach to practicing was flawed. This book has given me the tools I need to help students understand the how of practice that is outcome based and results oriented. Geared toward parents and teachers, Johnston makes a compelling argument for quality vs. quantity when it comes to practicing; all in an easy to read, conversational style.

In his third book, Practiceopedia, Johnston has written "the world' first complete practice room reference; a comprehensive 376 page fully-illustrated A-Z of practice ideas, strategies, tips, tricks and traps - in a breezy full-color magazine-style format that is browsable, fun to read, and bursting with information. "

Here is a list of my favorite articles from Philip Johnston's web-site The Practice Spot:

The Practice Revolution (Chapter 1 from the book with the same title)

The Role of Parents

Nintendo Practice
Don't let the title fool you on this one...excellent read, especially for parents of "screenagers" a.k.a "videots" or gamers.

Practice Props

Why some students don't practice