2014 Student and Teacher Goals

Like many teachers, my lessons focus on creating proper piano or vocal technique, establishing good practice habits, and the development of a well-rounded repertoire. In addition to those (sometimes lofty) goals, I like to keep things fun and interesting for the student – and even though it can be a little challenging, I’ve found that one of the best ways to do so is to let students decide what they want to learn.

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This year each student received a “2014 Student and Teacher Goals” sheet during their first lesson. They were encouraged to think of goals that would make them better musicians and bring enjoyment to their daily practice. They needed to ask themselves questions, such as “Why am I taking piano lessons?” or “What do I want to get out of taking voice lessons?”

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When they brought the sheet back the following week, I read over their goals with them to make sure that they were clear and concise… but that’s not where this ends. The next step for me was to take all the forms home and to come up with goals of my own that would complement the goals of each student! I’ll admit, this part was a bit tricky for some of the goals, but here are a couple of examples:

Student Goal: To practice more on the weekends.

Teacher Goal: Establish a “Weekend Practice” challenge for my student.

Student Goal: Learn a song by Taylor Swift.

Teacher Goal: Work on reading lead sheets and ear training exercises.

Once I finished writing down my goals for each student, then I copied the goal sheets. I kept one for myself and the other was sent home with the student, preferably in an easily accessible place, such as taped in the front of a method book, or pasted into an assignment book. My hope is that we can return to our goals periodically throughout the year to make sure that we are each working towards the student’s aspirations.

Would you like to join us in this 2014 Music Goals adventure?  Here are a couple of free downloadables.  Click HERE for a version in Word 2010 that has a form for you to add your studio name at the top. (You must download the file for the form to work!) Click HERE for a PDF version that you can alter by pasting your studio name at the top.

How do you inspire your students at the beginning of each year? Please share your ideas in the comments!

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