Articles and videos on practicing and motivation for student musicians and parents:

How to Develop the Habit of Practice

11 Tips for Practice Time

For Parents-Finding a Time to Practice

Tips for Learning Your Instrument Faster

For Parents: Finding a Time to Practice

Music Parent Advocacy: Support Your Student's Efforts

A Guide to Great Home Music Practice

Five Essential Tips for Efficient Practice

Some tips from Mr. Kennedy, one of the Band Teachers at the Middle School: Practice Tips for Middle and High School Students, which can be applied to elementary students as well.

The advanced orchestra practice record.

Using the Sound Innovations CDs/DVDs

The mP3 CD that comes with the book has tracks that correspond with each line number in the book, so students can use their mP3 CDs in a computer (or newer CD sound system) to play along when practicing at home.

Directions for opening the mP3 CD on a computer:

1. Insert the CD into drive. If a window appears, click on either "SIPlayer.exe", or on "Open Folder to view Files". Skip to step #4
2. If a window does not appear, Click on "My Computer"
3. Right-click on the SI CD/DVD, then choose "Open" or “Open folder”
4. Click on Sound Innovations mP3s
5. Click on abbreviation for your child's instrument:
VN is violin; VA is viola; VC is cello; SB is String Bass
6. The tracks should appear. Click on the number that corresponds with the song number in the Sound Innovations book. Windows media player, iTunes, etc. can store the tracks on your computer, which can then be transferred to a mobile device.

Practicing with the mP3 CD: Two ways:

1. If you use Windows media/iTunes to play the songs, the speed is not variable. Each song is played twice in one track: once with the melody or part that your child’s instrument plays with accompaniment, and then again without the melody/part, and only the accompaniment playing.

2. If you use the SI Player, the tempo of each track can be adjusted to be played faster or slower, for practicing purposes. Slide the toggle bar left for slower and right for faster than 100%, which is the original speed. Don’t forget to hit the Play button!

The DVD that comes with the Sound Innovations book should work in a computer, a DVD player, and some gaming consoles like PS2, PS3, and XBox.

If you have any questions, let me know!