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#14172 - 06/22/01 08:09 AM Using stickers & such
cecilly Offline
Mainstay Member

Registered: 04/11/01
Posts: 779
Loc: Illinois
Hey all, In all of my teaching, I've never used sticker charts with my kids for regular practice or learning pieces, etc. I have put occaisional stickers near the title of a piece after it's been learned, but never in a given chart. I know several of you have mentioned awarding stickers for regular attendance, practice, etc. I am thinking of doing this for weekly practice since I'm going to include a place for students to record their practice times on their assignment sheets now and think the visual chart will provide some accountability.
My question is, what kind of charts do you use (personal-that only you & student see, public-displayed on bulletin bd for all students to see, etc) and what is the critera for awarding the stickers? Do you only give one if the student has practiced The maximum? Anything less and no sticker? Or do you use say different colored stars with gold stars for daily practicers, silver for 5 days, blue for 4, etc. etc.?
I ask this because I have a few students who do well to get 4 days in due to legit reasons. Nevertheless, these practices are good ones and the students are accomplishing the goals for the assignments. I don't want to not award these kids a sticker when it's the best they can do in their given situations.
Finally, how old is too old for the use of sticker charts? Thanks.

Cecilly, starting to gear up and get organized for the Fall

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#14173 - 06/22/01 08:48 AM Re: Using stickers & such
Carole Offline
Star Member

Registered: 06/08/00
Posts: 2229
Loc: southern California
Cecilly, I get my little charts at the teacher store. They come in packages of about 30 I think. The charts have 20 spaces and each time they practice at least 5 times a week( and show me on their practice calendar), they get a sticker. After 10 stickers, they go to the Treasure Chest. I have them on one of those movable science fair boards-all displayed. I don't give stickers for any other reason but practice, except I do put them on pieces passed in their books. This has worked well for me for many years. If I tried to give stickers for other things, I would never be able to keep up with it all. The stickers I use are the kind that come in pkg. of about 500. I have several teenagers that still love their stickers, so it just depends on the personality, I guess. I AM flexible for some kids about the no. of days practiced-One goes to the other parent every other weekend, etc. so you do have to take that under consideration. Hope this has helped. \:\)

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#14174 - 06/22/01 08:51 AM Re: Using stickers & such
John Offline
Star Member

Registered: 03/29/01
Posts: 2454
Loc: Bellingham, WA
Cecilly, I have a few charts posted for all to see. I use a chart with "Performance Points", and students earn points every time they play a piece at a monthly class (elementary students usually play between 3-5 each month). I tend to award the points based on the effort required to master each piece (so less points for short, easy pieces).

I also have a chart for note flashcards with two "time-lines"; one for how fast students can play the notes on the keyboard by sight, another for their fastest time playing by touch only. (One student has held a "record" by playing ALL note flashcards, 36 I think, BY TOUCH in 45 seconds and 31 by sight. I can barely change cards fast enough for her!)

Another is for my own technique series, where they move from level to level after mastering specific scales, arpeggios, and chords.

You can save a ton of $$$$ by just using different colored push pins on a bulletin board. I find that students are equally excited about "moving ahead" with the pins as they were when I dealt with stickers, and it also allows me to move pins BACKWARDS to kep up-to-date with flashcard times and scale skills (esp. after a summer break).

You can buy those pre-made charts, but I recommend making all of them yourself, creating exactly the kind of priorities and atmosphere you value in your studio setting. With a computer and printer, some brightly colored markers, and imagination, you can devise all sorts of charts. Try ascending steps, a "yellow-brick road" pathway, a race car track, etc..., and maybe have stops along the way where you can reward progress.


I do recommend rewarding the actual ACCOMPLISHMENTS of good practice more than the time spent; make it goal oriented!

(not dissing stickers here, I was just SO inconsistent in using them that I stopped altogether!)

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#14175 - 06/22/01 08:57 AM Re: Using stickers & such
Vivace' Offline
Star Member

Registered: 05/25/01
Posts: 1717
Loc: USA
I do recommend rewarding the actual ACCOMPLISHMENTS of good practice more than the time spent; make it goal oriented!

moi aussi \:\)

Student: How long should I practice?
Moi: As long as it takes to prepare your lesson assignment.
_________________________
Then let us all do what is right, strive with all our might toward the unattainable, develop as fully as we can the gifts God has given us,and never stop learning." ~ Ludwig van Beethoven

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#14176 - 06/22/01 09:04 AM Re: Using stickers & such
Jalapeņo Offline
Star Member

Registered: 11/04/00
Posts: 5712
 Quote:
Originally posted by Vivace:
I do recommend rewarding the actual ACCOMPLISHMENTS of good practice more than the time spent; make it goal oriented!

moi aussi \:\)

Student: How long should I practice?
Moi: As long as it takes to prepare your lesson assignment.


AMEN! \:\) BTW, my sister just sent my kids a Xyron sticker maker machine. It's the neatest little gadget, 'cuz it's easy to use & doesn't require electricity. If you're interested, the website URL cited on the product brochure is http://www.xyron.com

My kids get bored, so I'm having them make me some stickers for my piano students. \:D

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#14177 - 06/22/01 09:11 AM Re: Using stickers & such
Eric Offline
Star Member

Registered: 04/04/00
Posts: 2325
Loc: New York, NY
 Quote:
Originally posted by Vivace:

Student: How long should I practice?
Moi: As long as it takes to prepare your lesson assignment.


Vivace,

That is the perfect answer to the practice question IF the student is a fellow NT!! \:\) Here's where understanding temperament can aid us in our teaching.

If the student is an NT, they want the priviledge of figuring out on their own what must be done to accomplish the goal. This is not as appealing to the SJ child, who would rather be given specific instructions; ("Practice this 3 times a day", etc.) The SP child will benefit from suggestions that makes practicing into a game, (a practice contest is perfect for them) and NFs will respond well if they know that it pleases you or their parent when they practice regularly.

Of course, it's good for children to develop their secondary learning modes as well, so it IS beneficial for the SJ child to be asked to create their own practice regime, and it can be a learning experience for an NT to just "do what they're told," even though they'd prefer to come up with their own way.

[ June 22, 2001: Message edited by: Eric ]

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#14178 - 06/22/01 09:22 AM Re: Using stickers & such
Vivace' Offline
Star Member

Registered: 05/25/01
Posts: 1717
Loc: USA
I know, you're exactly right. I provide each student with a practice calendar every month. Along with a space to record their practice time, I provide reminders of music club, audition dates, etc. A monthly newsletter is also given to each student elaborating on speakers for music club, congratulations to students for special achievements, a happy birthday spot,etc.
I am just more concerned with them perfecting the piece than playing it 5x each day. I want to prepare them to "do without" me............ When they get home from piano lessons, they, then become the teacher. \:\)
_________________________
Then let us all do what is right, strive with all our might toward the unattainable, develop as fully as we can the gifts God has given us,and never stop learning." ~ Ludwig van Beethoven

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#14179 - 06/22/01 09:27 AM Re: Using stickers & such
Vivace' Offline
Star Member

Registered: 05/25/01
Posts: 1717
Loc: USA
I can't get away from this computer!
I have 1 hour to dress and drive 30 minutes to hear one of my students perform at the closing ceremony for her music camp.................
I shall return!
_________________________
Then let us all do what is right, strive with all our might toward the unattainable, develop as fully as we can the gifts God has given us,and never stop learning." ~ Ludwig van Beethoven

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#14180 - 06/22/01 09:32 AM Re: Using stickers & such
Vivace' Offline
Star Member

Registered: 05/25/01
Posts: 1717
Loc: USA
PS When they practice regularly, the lesson date on the calendar has a HUGE smiley face added to the date. \:\)
_________________________
Then let us all do what is right, strive with all our might toward the unattainable, develop as fully as we can the gifts God has given us,and never stop learning." ~ Ludwig van Beethoven

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#14181 - 06/22/01 11:43 AM Re: Using stickers & such
Jalapeņo Offline
Star Member

Registered: 11/04/00
Posts: 5712
Interesting, Eric, that you say SJs have to be given specific instructions. I was never told how to practice, how long to practice, or even to practice. I just practiced because I wanted to learn to play. I learned to use the computer without a manual, too. I just got on & started doing things, figuring that if I screwed something up, I could simply hit the Exit key & get out. I learn most things by just diving in & doing them. Does that mean I'm not an SF? Or am I just a smart SF?

BTW, I give my students specific practice directions because I want to make sure they know how to practice. I don't assume they know anything that I haven't told or taught them. In other words, I don't assume that because one student is bright &/or has a certain learning style, s/he doesn't need to be given the same instructions as everyone else.

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