Creating a Practice Routine
The key to success on a musical instrument is practicing. By having a regular routine at home, playing your instrument will become easier and more fun. 4 or more days a week is the standard recommendation. Have your parents help you create a schedule at home.
This routine fits a 15-30 minute practice session.
1. Warm-up 2-5 minutes
- Should be the same each day, add or replace exercises as you improve.
- Long tones- develops a proper sound and strengthens embouchure muscles, time yourself to see how long you can play.
- Mouthpiece buzzing for brass, head joint for flute
- Simple tonguing and slur exercises
- Accent on instrument lines in book, pages 38-43
- Warm-up exercise page, airflow and legato page, etc.
- Concert Bb scale and chromatic scale- page 37
2. Technique 3-5 minutes
- Focus on some concept you are having difficulty with- fingerings, note names, foot-tapping, tone, tonguing, high notes, speed, dynamics, etc.
3. Assignment 5-10 minutes
- Focus on assigned pieces in book and band music. Work on the difficult parts, slow them down and repeat until comfortable. This will ensure progress in your next lesson and will prevent you from being “stuck” on something for too long. If your assignment is easy, feel free to move ahead in the book, learn a new note, etc.
4. Fun 5-10 minutes
- Your choice of favorite pieces, improvising, playing by ear something you heard on TV, radio or a movie. There are a variety of songbooks available for your instrument that include recordings. Many music stores have these or can order them. The internet is also a great resource for sheetmusic and recordings.
5. Write the number of minutes you just practiced in the front of your book 5-10 seconds