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How to Practice

How to Practice

WARM UP (2-4 minutes each)

Begin with long notes using the concert scale for your instrument.
   Clarinets can play descending F scale, leading into thumb exercise (high notes).

Play chromatic scale, learning both names for each fingering/position.
   Use finger chart to clarify any notes.

Brass: practice reaching high and low notes (partials) from the same fingering/slide position.

Percussion: practice taps, buzzes, flams, flam taps, paradiddles and rolls.

LESSON BOOK ASSIGNMENT (10 minutes each day)
Play assigned lines from the book, repeating each line 3-5 times.  Be sure to read all the instruction information (key signature, time signature, tempo, dynamics, on each page to learn the concepts.  New material first needs to be practiced slowly to ensure all the mechanics are included.  With subsequent repetitions and increased comfort, the tempo can be increased.  Consider using a metronome.

BAND MUSIC (5 minutes each day)
First play any circled measures, or parts with details written in for support.  This is called target practicing.  Repeat a small section until it can be played comfortably.
Then play the entire piece through.

WRAP UP (2-3 minutes each day)
Play something enjoyable, or favorite song to end practice session.

Write how many minutes practiced on your chart.  The last day of practicing in a week, add up the total numbers and have a parent/guardian sign practice sheet.

Brass: drain onto a cloth, into a trash can, or in a sink.  Oil valves and grease slides regularly.
Woodwinds: swab instruments with instrument specific cleaners. Add cork grease if necessary.
Play each note you know for 4 beats.  Then play each note 4 times, tonguing each note.
Play 5 note warm-up in whole notes (practice sustaining notes) and quarter notes (practice articulating/tonguing) notes.