Music Ed Mentor Podcast #052: Connecting Rehearsal with Home Practice

Music Ed Mentor Podcast #052: Connecting Rehearsal with Home Practice

Today we talk about something that can make or break your music classes: at-home practice. 

This is something that continues to come up in discussions between music teachers: how do you get kids to stay engaged enough that they want to practice at home? How do you track or grade it when they do? 

To help me answer these questions, and share tips to help your students get more out of at-home practice, I’ve brought on my friend, Dr. Giovanna Cruz. Giovanna is the education services manager at MakeMusic as well as an experienced orchestral and chamber musician, college and private studio teacher, and public school orchestra teacher. 

Giovanna shares some great, actionable advice based not only on her own teaching experience, but also from the many teachers she’s met and worked with in her work at MakeMusic. 

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Key Takeaways

  • Plan, implement, and evaluate rehearsals. Then rinse and repeat.
  • Model the behavior you want to see in your students
  • Demonstrate HOW to practice in class.
    • Use SmartMusic as visual and aural aid in class every day.
  • Build a culture of practice. 
    • Assign the content and excerpts worked on in class at the desired tempo.
  • Set expectations for your students regarding practice.
  • Listen to student recordings and provide feedback.

Additional Resources

Elisa Janson Jones

Elisa Janson Jones specializes in helping music educators build, manage, and grow thriving school music programs. With an MBA alongside her degree in music, she is also a coach and consultant to small businesses and nonprofits around the country, and serves as the conductor of her local community band. She has been teaching music for nearly 20 years and currently holds the prestigious position of elementary music teacher at a private K-8 Catholic School in Grand Junction, Colorado. Elisa is a frequent conference presenter, podcast guest, and contributor to music education magazines. She is the founder of the International Music Education Summit and the author of The Music Educator’s Guide to Thrive

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