How to Practice

A Guide for Parents/Guardians with Children in Band

Learning a musical instrument is a family affair. Your child needs your guidance and encouragement to make steady progress, to overcome learning hurdles and to enjoy and feel good about the process. Band class mainly focuses on the improvement of the group. Therefore, individual music practice is absolutely necessary if your child want to become a better musician.

  • Your child may need reminders and encouragement to practice. Establish a time of day to practice that works best for your child and for you.
    • 15-20 Minutes, every other day is a good place to start (this does not include setting up and taking apart the instrument). If your student wants to practice longer, then let them
  • Help your child set up a special place at home to practice. The space should be free of distraction. It should have good lighting, a folding music stand and a firm, straight-backed chair to promote correct posture and breathing (standing is fine too).
  • Encourage your child to practice with the CD in their method book. These CDs match up with what they should practice in their method book and show good tone, rhythm, note length, pitch and they are fun to play with. The “Tradition of Excellence” book also includes a DVD with beginner lessons for their specific instrument.
  • Take an interest in what your child is learning. Praise your child for each step forward. NEVER make negative or discouraging remarks about how your child’s playing sounds. It takes time and effort to produce musical sounds. Offer encouragement and show that you’re interested in how your child is doing. The important thing is to remember is that consistent practice will yield results. Students will get out of it what they put into it.
  • The fastest way to get better at in instrument is to take private lessons outside of school time. They will help your child progress much more quickly and could also help them become more motivated on their instrument. If your child is interested in the possibility of a private lesson contact me (adam.streisel@spiritsd.ca) and I will give you some suggestions for professional teachers for your child’s specific instrument.

A few final thoughts: Learning and mastering a musical instrument is an accomplishment to be proud of. It can build self-esteem, confidence and socialization skills. It is an interest and a skill that can last a lifetime. Parents play an important, supportive role in creating an environment that will foster steady progress and enjoyment.

~ Adam Streisel