In just a few days, Sept 6th to be exact, my university students (all piano majors) will converge on UBC for a new year of study, practice and goals to attain. The latter, of course, is my ultimate concern and that they pass their end-of-year exams with flying colors. The lesson to be learned is that the months are fleeting and prove challenging when it comes to managing time and attaining goals. This is not just true for university students but for all of us for whom productivity is important (and who wouldn’t want to be productive?).

Instructors at New World Music Academy, and many after-school music academies like it, struggle with these same issues: time management of their students during the week and attaining goals. Goals, in our case, come in the form of recital performances for our students. These happen in December and in May. Creating a trajectory and an overall plan for our students, from week to week and even over months, is a critical part of teaching. Setting realistic goals, choosing the right repertoire and creating lesson plans that ensure consistent weekly practice are just a few of the topics that are fundamental to a student’s success. Of course, a home environment that compliments these plans is crucial as well.

Much of this blog will be committed to discussing good practice habits and good teaching skills to make sure success is a big part of our students’ studies!