Parent/Student Resources

How Do I Help My Student Be Successful in Band?

If you have no prior musical experience (and even if you do), you may be unsure how to help your student be successful on their instrument and in band. That's OK!! The following tips and tricks can help you:

  1. This one's first because it's the most important - ENCOURAGE THEM TO PRACTICE!!! Practicing is the #1 way a student gets better on their instrument. Sometimes kids don't want to practice because they are not feeling successful - this is when they need the most encouragement. They should be practicing outside of school a minimum of 20 minutes per day, 6 days per week.

  2. Know the difference between practicing and playing. 'Practicing' is working on stuff you're not good at. 'Playing' is working on stuff you are good at. Most of the student's practice time should be spent actually practicing - making mistakes and working on small chunks over and over. If you hear them playing the same song all the time, they are playing, not practicing.

  3. Have a dedicated, distraction-free practice space. Students should practice in a chair and using a wire music stand (not on the floor, their bed, or the sofa). Sitting correctly and holding their instrument correctly is essential to being a good player.

  4. If they're doing something that looks or sounds weird, ask them "Did your band director teach you to do it that way?" Students will usually tell you the truth and correct it if it's wrong.

  5. Have them play for you!! Ask them to show you what they've learned and are excited about. Encourage and praise them no matter what. :)

  6. Go to A Parent's Guide to Successful Practicing. This website is a wealth of knowledge on how to help your student.