1. What is included in the Practice Record?
The Practice Records are our number one seller and are designed to include everything (but a pencil) that a parent needs to take into a lesson. The Practice Records include:
- 52 weekly practice charts with review pieces for each day of the week.
- Sections to take specific notes about each piece are you are learning it. This sections includes a Portrait of the Composer (where available - Seitz has no portrait), and space to take notes. This is particularly useful during review. You have everything about that piece in one place and you don't have to look through pages of practice charts.
- Section for 12 group lessons notes.
- A Circle of Fifths Chart.
Practice Records are spiral bound so they will sit flat on a music stand.
2. How do I utilized the Review Cards in my practice?
Review Cards contain a card for each piece in the Suzuki Literature. They are broken into two sections, Books 1-4 and Books 5-10. Here are the most common uses:
- Daily Review: Make a stack of all the pieces you have learned. Decide how many review pieces you wish to practice and randomly pick that many cards from the stack. Place across the bottom of the music stand and play through the piece on each card. This was particularly helpful with one of my sons who would always ask how much longer the practice session would be. He could see exactly how many review pieces he had left.
- Getting Ready for a Book Recital: Gather the cards from the book you are preparing to perform. (It's easy because the cards are color coded by book). Play through each piece in the book and critically ask if the song is "Performance Ready," or "Needs Polishing." Each card will be placed in one of those two stacks. The next day, take the top card on the "Needs Polishing" stack and focus on that piece. The goal is to move all of the cards to the "Performance Ready" pile. I’m addition to working on the "Needs Polishing" stack, you will play through each "Performance Ready" card daily to make sure it stays polished. When all of the cards are in the "Performance Ready" pile, you are ready for your Book Recital.
3. What are Posture Cards?
Posture Cards contain points of good posture. Here are some ways to integrate them into your practice:
- Earn a Card - During practice, tell the player you will be watching for excellent posture, such as, straight bow, play-position feet, etc. When finished with a piece, set out the cards on the stand that they "earned."
- Use with the Review Cards. Select a posture point to focus on. Just one. Place that card on the music stand along with a Review Card. During that review piece, focus on that posture point.
- Pick one Posture Card to work on during the entire practice session. This is very helpful if you have one element of posture that needs intense focus.
- The Pick Your Own Posture Point card is there so you can add other posture points your teacher has asked you to work on.
4. What are Practice Cards?
Practice Cards include fun practice ideas to shake your practice session up. There are activities and games to incorporate into your practice session. For instance, one card is for a freeze game. This activity that was very beneficial with my own children. This game is played by having the child begin a piece and then the practice partner taps the child on the shoulder. The child freezes until they are tapped again and resumes playing. Lots of concentration is required.
5. How do I use Finger Puppets?
Some can ride on a bow, other can ride on your bow thumb. Mostly, the parent/teacher uses the puppets to offer gentle reminders during the lesson. Corrections and repetition requests are more gently given with a puppet. Meredith Strings sells high quality Folkmanis Finger Puppets.
6. I've lost a card, can I order just one replacement card?
Yes! Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and let me know which card you are missing. The card will be $1 including postage and will be shipped first class mail. You will receive an invoice to pay.
7. Why does a Strings store have things for Flute and Piano? In 2009, Meredith Strings started with Violin/Viola Review Cards. We then branched out to Practice Cards and Posture Cards. At our booth at the Suzuki Conference, Flute and Piano teachers requested our cards, so we expanded our line.