Ever wondered how to get a kid to play the same passage more than once – let alone 6 times? Of course you have if you are trying to help a child learn to play piano! Here is a repurposed game that works extremely well for solving this problem. If you’ve downloaded my Weekly Practice Games Printable, you may have seen this game listed as one of the practice assignments. It’s the classic Silly 6 Pins Game. I tell my students to bowl to see how many pins they can knock down. They try really hard to get a strike which usually results in lots of pins getting knocked down. They get to play whatever passage or piece they need to practice one time for each pin they knocked down. I get really silly with it and take the pins they knocked down to the piano. Each time they play the piece, I ask them which pin they want me to throw away. And, yes, I throw the pin across the room (carefully, of course). Depending on the kids’ personality I might even let him or her throw the pin. Of course I only do that if I’m pretty sure the kid won’t tear up my studio with the pin! Warning: This practice game could take up a large portion of the lesson because kids want to play it over and over again. However, this results in songs well learned, and tricky passages terminated! In case you missed it, you can check out Fun Practice for even more sneaky ways to get kids to “Play It Again”.
What tricks do you use to get your piano player to practice?