Donnerstag, August 28, 2008

The Carrot . . .

The carrot or the stick, this is the question.

I am trying to make piano lessons more fun this year. I have this project laid out to keep me working.

Adamas Shawl by MimKnits; Sappho laceweight by The Sanguine Gryphon in "Come to Me From Crete."

I'm thinking of it for the airplane project for Austria, since it has a simple chart. I will let myself start it after the students' open house tomorrow.

My idea with piano is that if things are more fun for the students, maybe they will be more fun for me. Some of the changes:

A club for kids who practice fives times each week for at least three consecutive weeks, with bonus points and prizes (I'm thinking coupons for Baskin Robbins, Pizza Hut, that kind of thing).

A Get Out of Jail Free card in case people miss a practice day--they can earn it back with two weeks perfect practice.

Contests. Say, are you noticing a trend here? Does it remind you of the yarn world? Let me know if you have ideas for contests. So far I have:

  • September: name the practicing club

  • October: dialing for donuts
  • I call their house and if they have practiced they get a coupon for a donut from a local bakery

  • November: most measures of Christmas music learned
  • We have our recital early in December, then take the rest of the month off

  • December: most minutes practiced during the vacation

  • January: no ideas

  • February: Sight reading Valentines
  • They open the Valentine and sight read the music inside--fewest mistakes wins. Hmmm, that will take some work to make sure each child's music is at the right level.

  • March: no ideas

  • April: something Easter-related?

  • May: no ideas

  • June: no ideas

  • Everyone who enters will get something, although there need to a few special prizes.

    I've also made a new practice chart with stickers so they have no excuse for not tracking their practicing.

    It's hard to know how many packets to make. Only four families have let me know their lesson time preferences. They represent about half the paying students, plus my grandkids. We'll see who shows up for the open house tomorrow. If no one comes I am going to have a heck of a lot of cookies, eclairs, and donut holes to dispose of.

    Incidentally, I'm thinking of a new incentive for me: A sign in the kitchen that says, "Now Earning: Wollmeise or STR" so I don't feel as if I'm wasting my time.


    Margene hat gesagt…

    You are a very good teacher. Makes me want to take lessons! ;-)

    Lynn hat gesagt…

    If *that* gorgeous hank is the yarn you asked me about for Adamas, I am thinking probably "yes". I'd swatch it first before taking it to Austria.

    I think the incentives for your piano students sound great. No suggestions as yet for the missing months. And I think the incentives for the piano teacher sound even better!

    Joanne hat gesagt…

    Those are great ideas! Sounds fun to me!

    No tickers