Master Teacher Blog: Encouragement to Practice Through Positive Reinforcement

Here at Park Cities School of Music in Dallas, TX, we stress the importance of proper practice in order for our students to progress. Without it, there would be little to no improvement. Practice in music is not only important when developing each person’s craft, but it teaches valuable character traits such as discipline, focus, and responsibility. It is also a skill that we need to teach in not only direct but creative ways.

One of the ways that has proven to be helpful in teaching children the skill of practicing is goal setting. When you give students specific tasks each week, they then approach their practice time with a sense of purpose and direction. They learn that practice is not about playing through their favorite pieces, but it’s to accomplish certain things and hone in on areas that need to get stronger. That’s why, at Park Cities School of Music in Dallas, TX, we use forms in every lesson that outline what’s been worked on that day and what should be each student’s focus during the upcoming week.

Another very effective tool in developing practice skills is positive reinforcement. When children learn that achieving their goals yields them praise and reward, they are more likely to feel motivated to continue. This month, at Park Cities School of Music in Dallas, TX, we will be doing just that. We are implementing a Halloween practice challenge that is designed to last throughout the month of October. Although that challenge has been mostly outlined, each teach will be tweaking it to fit their students’ age, instrument, goals, and development. At the end of four weeks, all students that completed every week’s tasks will receive a prize from the school. These types of challenges and competition has been proven to strike enthusiasm about music and goal setting. We look forward to seeing those same results in our PCSM musicians.

Ebonee Davis

PCSM Master Teacher

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