Are you looking for ways to make practice fun and more effective?
Why not try some of these suggestions made by our own ESPS members?
I like to pick a part in a song to practice and I roll the dice to see how many times I need to practice it.
Record your child with your ipad and then watch it back.  Let your child notice his/her successes and areas to improve.
Arrange a music play date with someone in your neighbourhood.  We have neighbours who are retired and they love music.  So, every month or two we go over there and give them a concert.  The gentleman has Alzheimers but he remembers music the most, so the visits we make are valuable to all of us for so many reasons.
I like to play cards with my mom.  If I practice accurately, I win the card, but if I don’t pay attention, my mom wins the card.  I also earn cards when I am a good listener.  Whoever has the most at the end, wins.
I like to listen to the song before I practice it because it helps me to remember what it sounds like.
We roll the die across the room.  After we have discovered the number, we race back to the piano to practice the song number from the die.
I like to earn stickers and drawing happy faces on my practice sheets.
I like to mark the hard spots in a song with see-through stickies so they help me remember what areas to focus on.
Before you play the song through, try to polish the parts that need a little more work.
I like it when Mom lights the candles in the piano room.
Our oldest son decided to create his own practice plan every week.  He takes the notes that we write at lesson time and then decides how he will practice everything during the week.  Because it is his own plan, he seems to be much more invested in making sure he is successful.
We love to play for our family and friends.  We perform a concert for our family that is far away with skype.  Guests that come to visit receive a concert after dinner!
Reap the benefits – think of piano practice as a way to calm yourself after a long day.  Enjoy the music and put your worries on hold.
Use fun things to help count how many times you have practiced something.
I like to pick a card from a pile and the card tells me what song to practice.
I used to hold pompoms on my hand and my parents would time me to see how long I could keep my hand flat before the pompom would fall off.
We like to make up silly words to the music when we are listening to the cd.
Make sure you pick the right time to practice, not the most convenient time.
I like it when Mom dances while I play the piano.
I have a cup with all the book one piano songs on Popsicle sticks.  I get to pick sticks to see which songs I will play.
Get a box of chocolates and every time you accomplish a difficult task or learn a new song, you can earn a chocolate.
I like colouring in the gumballs in the gumball machine.
I like to play the dominoes game.
We like to race across the basement to see who wins.  The winner decides how many times she/he should practice the repetition.
Think about how you can use your talent in other areas.  It is proven that playing music develops your brain and can be beneficial for hard, logical skills like math.
I like to start by playing my favourite song first.
We like to put together puzzles.  Every time we complete a task, our son earns a puzzle piece.  He gets to put the puzzle together when he has earned all the pieces.
I like to play difficult passages slowly and steadily, making sure to pay attention to every single note.