Parent’s corner: tips to encourage your child to practise
1. Ensure practise happens at the same time each day, whether this is in the morning before school or when they get home- before watching tv or playing games.
2 Make it easy to practise- keep the violin case open in a safe place (away from toddlers or pets!) with the shoulder rest left on the violin. This takes the ‘hassle’ out of setting it all up which is one of the reasons kids find playing the piano so appealing!
3. Practise with your child in small chunks, no longer than 15 minutes at a time. Gradually increase practise time, starting with 30 minutes a day for very young children.
4. Find a piece that interests your child (i.e. Star Wars or Frozen theme tunes). Do this as a treat if you’re working on exam repertoire.
5. Make it fun! Try using a ‘lucky dip’, putting all the scales/pieces into a pot and asking them to pick one out (this is very popular with our young students!)
6. Kids love an audience so make sure you encourage them to perform, clapping at the end and giving them plenty of enthusiasm!
7. Sticker charts – a teacher’s best friend, but also a brilliant way of motivating children, whether to reach exam goals or simply achieving small steps.
8. Make sure you give them practising/achievement rewards! A star sticker system towards a favourite toy can work well.